Muscling Through

Muscling Through - J.L. Merrow I read the first passage of this book and I just knew I would Love It... and Love it, I did!


This book is a love story of two very different people, from opposite walks of life, beautifully narrated from Al's point of view and is almost childlike in it's simplicity. Al has an innocent honesty with no filters, the delivery of which is authentic in his British regional dialect, I could actually hear his accent in my head!, his unintentional humour had me laughing out loud through out the book...

Even though there are two main characters in this book, Al and Larry. The star of the show is Al, as we see this very loving relationship unfold through his eyes and with his voice.

Larry, who is small in stature and described by Al as 'pretty', is a Professor in the History of Art at Cambridge University, highly intellectual and used to the finer things in life! Al is in awe of Larry's beauty and intelligence and unselfishly wants nothing more than for Larry to be happy... his heart is fit to bursting with the pride he feels towards him.

Oh Al... my sweet, loveable, endearing, gentle giant. He is huge, covered in tattoo's with a nasty scar on his face, thanks to a broken glass in a bar fight, he is a typical lad about town who likes nothing more than going down the pub with his mates and having a pint. Larry on the other hand prefers his nights out at the Opera, Theatre, or the occasional dinner party with colleagues and fellow Professors from the University.

Al see's the simple beauty of life without it's complexities, uneducated with no self esteem, describing himself as 'thick as pig shit'. He therefore has no expectations from life and is never disappointed with his lot, empty promises are what he expect's! Larry... bless him, peel's away the insecurities, accepting Al for the meek, mild mannered fellow he is - warts 'n' all. Larry never condescends him, despite his simple nature and laughs with him, rather than at him!.

Unfortunately Larry's family and friends see something completely different and they really don't care about voicing their pompous, conceited, bigoted opinions in Al's company, while my sweet, sweet Al is totally oblivious to the educated barbs and remarks voiced purely to humiliate him!

I wanted to cry at his humility... he only see's the good in the world, thinking himself insignificant in the bigger picture. He is not good with words, but when he expresses himself in the way only he can with total innocence and honesty... Oh dear lord, the tissues were out again!

This is a really 'Ahh....Bless', book and I truly loved their refreshingly different relationship and even though we have the word 'fuck' in the first and last sentence, I wasn't feeling the sex scene's and yes I do mean that literally! It was described rather than felt, left me unsatisfied and detached and I wanted wonderful. It probably wouldn't have been fitting in the context of the book for Al to all of a sudden sprout a new vocabulary and animated descriptions just to satisfy my carnal needs!

This really is a feel good kind of book, highly entertaining and something I could relate to. If you are wanting an m/m book which is hot, hot, hot... this is not for you! but if you want sweet and loving, get it now!

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