Bobby’s Old Man by A.C. Katt

Bobby’s Old Man by A.C. Katt
Publisher: MLR Press
Genre: Contemporary
Length: Full Length (175 pgs)
Other: M/M
Rating: 3.5 stars
Reviewed by Fern

Keith Anderson believes he’s caught in gay hell – almost forty and too old for love. Bobby Michaels disagrees and thinks Keith is just right for him.

Keith Anderson is in love with Bobby Michaels. Unfortunately, Keith with their fifteen year age difference thinks he’s too old for Bobby. The two start as ‘friends with benefits’ but Keith dumps Bobby when it turns serious leaving Bobby brokenhearted.

When tragedy strikes and Bobby needs Keith, he steps up to support his lover. But Bobby lacks trust in Keith and everything around him. Can Keith convince Bobby that this time is for real, or will the two lovers never reconcile?

Bobby loves Keith, but Keith is sharply aware of their fifteen year age difference. The two men met when their respective best friends started dating and sparks flew from the very first second. Neither Keith nor Bobby were looking for anything stable to begin with, but as their “friends with benefits” hook ups became more regular Bobby became more serious. Keith has warned Bobby from the very beginning that their age difference made him nervous, and so the men break up and Bobby is heartbroken.

I found this an interesting story. The pace meanders but focuses fully on the relationship between Bobby and Keith. Apart from the fact this is an M/M I’d actually say this is very similar to many of the older-style romances where the plot *is* the relationship between the two protagonists. I enjoyed how the author spent their time developing the story around the two men. The conversations weren’t rushed and all the scenes/interactions took their time. I’ve honestly become quite used to the quicker pace of action based plots and more modern, faster relationships. So it felt quite the breath of fresh air to find a slower paced book that really fleshed out all the conversations.

At times in the full length story I did wonder if some of the pace might be tightened, but I think that was my personal feelings, I got the impression the author purposely had the slower pace so the reader could more fully appreciate all the complexities that really surround a blossoming romance. I also privately wondered why the age difference between Bobby and Keith was so important, particularly to Keith. Fifteen years isn’t anything to blithely ignore – but it’s also not so incredibly uncommon nowadays either. While this might be something for some readers to consider, I honestly feel that the author meshed this in with the “older style” storytelling quite well. I did enjoy it, but just couldn’t help question whether it was really such a current/modern style of problem – particularly it acted as a big part of the plot and catalyst for much of the conflict. It was a pivotal point to my mind in the book, and I just wasn’t completely sold on it being such a critical issue.

I found the sex to be tenderly written – almost “spicy” as opposed to “erotic”. I had no qualm about this though, as this fit with the slower pace, older style of writing and far more emotional type of story this was to my mind. Emotional and spicy, rather than erotic and over the top. The characters were amazingly written. I loved how they actually started almost as protagonists – each the best friend of a new couple, Zach and Jason, and both Keith and Bobby were looking out for their own best friend and trying to extract information from the other. I found that a fantastic set-up for Keith and Bobby and it drew me right into the story. None of the characters were simple or easily understood – and that made them even more interesting to me. I also really loved how deeply emotional the plot was. In some places I genuinely teared up – at what both Keith and Bobby went through. I felt such a strong connection to the two men that I was deeply invested in both them and their relationship.

A strongly written, deeply emotional read, I found the characters and situations they worked through to be excellently written. While a few snags kept this from being a fantastic read, I really enjoyed it and will happily read it again and would eagerly read more from this author.

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