Now That We’re Grown
by Duane Simolke
My rating: 4 stars
Publication Date: January 1, 2019
Publisher: Duane Simolke
Genre: M/M Romance | Short Story | Social Issues
Print Length: 25 pages
Gavin Hernandez and Peter Montoya meet before high school. Gavin admires how Peter never complains about being gay or using a wheelchair. During their senior year, Gavin takes profile pictures of Peter in that chair, but the gesture of good will leads to online bullying and a painful final stretch of school. Best friends slowly drift apart.
After college, they reunite in Dallas as more than friends. Gavin now designs facilities for people with physical challenges. Peter looks for a job to match his business administration degree. The past might destroy their relationship, or their love might change their lives.
MM romance/gay romance. Contains bullying, threats, mild violence, and sexual references.
Now That We're Grown by Duane Simolke
In High school, a well-intentioned act becomes a cruel target for ridicule when Gavin takes pictures of wheelchair-bound Peter and these pictures of strength become ugly and twisted. When they meet up after college, the sparks from their youth still remain, but so do the ghosts of the past. Has life and their personal maturity taken them far enough from the pain to find a home for their hearts?
Duane Simolke’s NOW THAT WE’RE GROWN is a simple and sweet love story of strength against the odds. Very short, this is a tiny slice of life, of letting the past stay in the past and looking to a future that promises so much more. The characters feel real, tentative, yet clearly meant for each other, if society’s judgment hadn’t got in their way.
This author writes with a gentle strength that comes through as he both spotlights social issues and love. The potential for a much longer tale is here, but perhaps we were never meant to be voyeurs to years of pain.
I received a complimentary ARC edition from Duane Simolke!