07 September 2014

Understanding Jeremy by A.M. Arthur

 No one in Jeremy Collins's life ever stays. His parents, sister, and wife are all dead. Now he has taken Cole Alston into his home to help him recover from years of abuse at the hands of his ex. Jeremy hopes Cole, who he loves, will stick around, but after eight years of Cole not being allowed to make his own choices, Jeremy doesn't think he has the right to ask. As Jeremy keeps his concerns and desires to himself, his best friend Bethann calls on him for a huge favor--claim he's the father of her baby so she isn't ostracized in their small town for sleeping with a married man. However doing so would be tantamount to denying his relationship with Cole. Rumors fly before Jeremy can explain to Cole that he said no, and suddenly the whole town is in his business. Rather than reassure Cole, Jeremy's explanations have the opposite effect. Something is going on in Cole's mind that Jeremy doesn't know about, and in order to get Cole to talk, Jeremy will need to confront his own deepest fear.

I had not read the first book in the journey of Cole and Jeremy so I was kind of lost at the beginning.  It felt like I was missing a lot of the plot.  When talking to a friend about this review she said she had the first book and I had to read it so I borrowed it.  Let me tell you after finishing the first book, I was so in love with Cole and Jeremy that it shed a whole new light on Understanding Jeremy.  Please make sure you read Unearthing Cole first so you will also understand the meaning of this book. 
Cole is still getting over the abuse from his ex-boyfriend Martin.  It is clear Cole has PTSD and agonizes with nightmares and flashbacks from that abuse.  He also carries around the trauma of living with hording parents in a house that was unsafe and unfit.  Now looking at a second chance at happiness he lives with Jeremy but must keep his relationship secret because the small town won’t accept them.
Jeremy isn’t without his insecurities and fears from past pain but he is dedicated to being there for Cole and helping him recover.  Never being angry at Cole for the flashbacks and nightmares, Jeremy always takes Cole and his progress into consideration when making plans for the two of them.  Jeremy suffered a great loss and his sister in law Bethann was a guiding force for him in his recovery but now she needs something in return.  What she asks of Jeremy will risk their bond and friendship that they have made and attack what little trust he has in people as a whole. This request could also shatter what he is trying to build with Cole.   Jeremy is frighten every day that Cole will be added to the long list of people who have abandoned him and now with this new betrayal, he will have to work hard and keeping his fear of Cole at bay. 
The author did a wonderful job at giving us Cole and Jeremy’s story while focusing on the real emotions that build a relationship.  Yes there is m/m sex in the book but what touched me was the raw fear and emotions that each had for the other and how they came together to heal the wounds of their partner.  With little to no support they hid their feelings from the community and in turn from each other for a long time.  The moment they could be honest about how they felt was a freeing moment for me as a reader.  It pained me to watch them hide their love and desires, their dreams and their pain. 
I am so glad that I had the chance to read this book and learn of the first book.  Please keep an eye out in the future for my review for Unearthing Cole.  This story will touch your heart and tug at your emotions with the characters and what they have had to endure to find their happiness.  I even loved that the author was able to give me secondary characters that left me wanting to smack them because they hurt Jeremy and Cole.  Make sure you get your copy of this series.   

This is the sequel to Unearthing Cole and the second book in the Discovering Me Series.  I loved this book and thought it was wonderful to see the relationship through Jeremy’s eyes. Throughout the first book Cole seems like the more “broken” character when in fact they both have a lot of healing to do.  In this book we get to watch the relationship between Cole and Jeremy blossom and each of them begin to take control of their lives again.

Jeremy has dealt with an extreme amount of loss in his years and while he loves Cole it is really hard for him to believe that he will stick around for the long haul especially when it seems things can’t go their way.  This was a beautiful continuation to a wonderful story. I cannot wait to read the next book in this series.


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