Monday, November 7, 2016

Release Day Review ~ Running Blind by Kim Fielding and Venona Keyes

Release Day Review ~ Running Blind by Kim Fielding and Venona Keyes 

Title: Running Blind
Authors: Kim Fielding and Venona Keyes
Release Date: November 7, 2016
Category: Contemporary
Pages: 200

Kyle Green is on top of the world. He and Matt have been together for ten years, and—as the voice of Ecos, the wildly popular anime character—Kyle is treated like a rock star in anime circles. But in an instant, a stroke leaves him blind. When photographer Matt gets the opportunity of a lifetime, Kyle reexamines their relationship, discovers it has been a safety net rather than a true romance, and sets Matt free to pursue his dream. Kyle’s life and career as he knew them are gone, and he must now find the courage and creativity to draft a new plan.
After being away for fifteen years, Seth Caplan comes home to Chicago to care for his mother and to partner with a small start-up tech company. He and Kyle meet after Kyle’s collision with a child’s sidewalk toy, and they hit it off. Kyle wants to get back into running, and Seth becomes his guide. As they get to know each other, they start seeing each other beyond their three-times-a-week runs. But Seth’s revelation of the dark reason why he left his career in California sends the relationship into a tailspin and leaves both men running blind.

3.5 Stars

*** Copy provided to Bayou Book Junkie by the author/publisher for my reading pleasure in hopes of an unbiased opinion, a review was not a requirement.***

After a stroke causes Kyle to lose his sight, he has to relearn to do everything. How to read, cook, even finding his way around his own home and these are just the beginning. Kyle has been with Matt for a long time. They are great friends, but there is no spark in their relationship. They love one another, but they aren't in love with each other. At Kyle's urging when Matt gets his dream job opportunity, they agree to go their separate ways.

I loved the premise of the story, and it was a good story, but it was so slooooow in the beginning that it was hard to stay focused. Kyle and Seth don't meet until 25% into the book, then they don't have another interaction until 40%. If the story had been told in alternating POVs, that might have been okay, but because it's told completely from Kyle's POV, it felt very much like his story, not their story. Seth is kept in the background and at times feels almost like an afterthought. Both of these men are damaged to a degree. They both had a story to tell, I just wish we had gotten more page time with Seth.

Enough about what I didn't like, now on to what I did. They story was heartwarming and sweet. Two men, neither looking for love, but they trip into it, literally. Kyle and Seth were both likable characters and they had a good chemistry. I loved that Kyle's disability didn't phase Seth. He took it in stride and really saw Kyle, not his limitations. He was loving and encouraging and they seemed to fit together quite well. The supporting characters of Seth's mom and Kyle's sister weren't just in the background. They added to the story nicely, although to be honest Lily, Seth's sister, dominated the story at times. If the authors had cut some of her scenes and added Seth scenes, I think the book would have been much more balanced.

The authors' collaboration was outstanding. Really, until I looked the book up on my schedule, I totally forgot I was even reading a collaboration. It was a seamless process. The subject of Kyle's blindness seemed very well researched and I learned a lot from the story. Once Kyle and Seth finally meet, the pace of the story seemed to pick up and it was a really enjoyable read. I'd recommend it!

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