Book Reviews

Snow Angel (Angel 1) by Sharon Maria Bidwell at JMS Books

Genre Gay / Contemporary / BDSM / Erotic Romance
Reviewed by Serena Yates on 07-December-2017

Book Blurb

Come out of the cold, into the warm ...

Dean Chapman has always had a thing for April Reid, ‘the girl next door’, the woman he’s never had. What he doesn’t know is that while he made puppy dog eyes at her, her younger brother Jay spent time looking at him the same way.

Now, years later, he considers the two Reid siblings as close friends, nothing more. Little does he know Jay is still in love with him, always has been, always will be, but he’s about to find out. When he does, it not only throws his sexuality into question, it shines an ugly light in his direction.

Reacting as he often does, on impulse, he’s about to make an understandable but life-altering mistake ... and then he makes another one. Dean has to take a long look at himself and he isn’t sure he likes what he sees. He can’t remember being this arrogant, not to mention a control freak, and that’s only a few of the nicer things April Reid has taken to calling him in defence of her brother. Can he change? Does he want to? Does he even need to, or is it really just a question of making the right choice?

It’s winter and snow is falling, but he doesn’t yet know which of them might yet be left out in the cold. If Dean isn’t careful, he might lose the one person who can take him just as he is, ego included.

First edition published by Loose Id in December 2006.

Book Review

While not a Christmas story in the “traditional” sense, I think that ‘Snow Angel’ incorporates the spirit of Christmas, its message of hope, and multitude of miracles - eventually and after much pain and more than one false start. Even though I have read the original edition many years ago, I can honestly say I had forgotten how long and painful Dean and Jay’s road to happiness is. I mostly blame Dean, and not just because he is older. Jay’s sister, April, has a lot to answer for as well, and poor Jay is caught in the middle. The result of all this drama, as painful as all of Dean’s errors are to watch, is a fascinating story about two complex characters, one of whom has a lot of growing to do before he catches on to what is really important in life. Dean needs to develop self-awareness, the ability to be honest with himself, and only then can he find true happiness with the man he has called angel, in his own mind at least, more than once over the years.

Dean is not a nice man, not that he has ever had to be. His parents are strict, his career predetermined, and he has never had to question himself or his place in the world. Of course he will take over his father’s garage when he graduates from college, never mind that he has a well-hidden talent for writing. Of course he is straight and his many one-night stands and short flings are proof of that. Of course he and Jay are friends, like they have always been, and the kisses they have shared were – aberrations. Or -  something. Dean needs a wakeup call, a long hard look at himself without the rose-colored glasses of everyone else’s expectations, and the result of what he finds is not pretty. In fact it is ugly enough to almost send him right back into the familiar clutches of determined denial and learned defensive behaviors – except for the incentive of becoming someone worthy of Jay’s friendship, and possibly more.

Jay may not be a literal angel, but he definitely has the kind of patience I would call angelic. He has loved Dean for years, has grown impatient and gotten angry at him for not “seeing the light”, but deep down, he never gives up hope. It causes a lot of pain when he is rejected and ignored and treated without any sensitivity whatsoever – again and again and again. I am sure he wishes he could forget Dean and move on, but he does not seem to have it in him. Not that he doesn’t try! But when Dean decides to start opening up and Jay is tempted to see where things will go, in many ways that is when the real pain for Jay begins. That little sliver of hope makes him far more vulnerable than he’d like to admit, and I really felt for Jay as he battles himself, his sister’s controlling meddling, and Dean’s stupidity and lack of insight. Rarely has a character deserved a happy ending as much as Jay, in my opinion.

If you have the patience to watch the long, hard battle of a young man who wants to come out of the cold or emotional isolation but has no clue how to do it, if you want to see what effect “trial and error” can have on a budding relationship, and if you’re looking for a read that is as harrowing as it is rewarding, then you will probably like this novel. I think the ending (and the prospect of going straight to the sequel this time) makes it all worth it!





DISCLAIMER: Books reviewed on this site were usually provided at no cost by the publisher or author. This book has been provided by JMS Books for the purpose of a review.

Additional Information

Format ebook
Length Novel, 68479 words
Heat Level
Publication Date 03-December-2016
Price $5.99 ebook
Buy Link