Monday, October 17, 2016

Book Tour for Bluewater Blues by G.B. Gordon (Review & GIVEAWAY)

As a reader drawn to the theme of disability in romance I was immediately captivated by the premise of this book, and its depiction of autism, and am excited to introduce you to it today.  Keep reading to get a tempting glimpse of Bluewater Blues by G.B. Gordon, along with my impressions of it, and discover even more about this m/m book by visiting the other sites hosting this tour.  In honor of this engaging 15th installment in the Bluewater Bay series make sure to leave a comment below for the chance to win a $20 Riptide Publishing GC too!

Jack Daley left his music career behind—along with his domineering father—and is struggling to make a new life for himself and his autistic sister in Bluewater Bay. When a summer storm sweeps a handsome stranger into his general store, Jack is more than ready for a fling. No strings attached, because Jack can’t share the secrets he and his sister are hiding from. Unfortunately, his feelings refuse to stay casual.
Mark Keao is married to his job as a costume designer on Wolf’s Landing. He’s autistic, so he’s used to people not knowing how to interact with him, but that doesn’t mean he wants to be a hermit. Especially when he meets Jack Daley, who dances with brooms, shares his love of the blues, and gets him like no one else. But relationships have proven complicated in the past.
Just when Mark is ready to try anyway, Jack pulls back. But Mark isn’t giving up, and neither is Jack’s sister. And then there’s the music both men love, bringing them together time and again. It will take trust, though, to bring them together for good.


As a disabled reader I applaud any author brave enough to tackle the topic of disability in romance as it's a complex balancing act to depict it realistically yet make it relatable to those that are not disabled.  With this book the author deals with autism from two opposite ends of the spectrum as it brings together two lovers and deepens the bond between a brother and sister.  It depicts every quirk and all the highs and lows of the intense feelings and emotions that are heightened for those with autism and which sometimes leave them lost in their own world.

Mark's an immensely likable young man who's overcome a lot in life.  He may appear a bit cold at first but to those few he calls friend, he's intensely loyal and nonjudgmental.  He's made a life for himself working as costume director on TVs hottest show and takes great pride in his talents.  He's learned how to accommodate his work needs when it comes to his autism and in the process he's been able to keep his disability a secret, finding success on his own terms. Keeping secrets though leads to a solitary life of work and home with only casual hook-ups satisfying his other needs.  The day he meets Jack is the day that he realizes that casual hook-ups no longer satisfy him as the spark that flies between them forces Mark into pushing past his fear of touch and other quirks so that something long-term can flourish.  It's not an easy journey though as Mark's self-esteem issues and self-doubts war with his desires in a relationship that evolves slowly, but no less sensually.  Mark's disability is mostly tactile as he hates being touched which clearly weighs on his and Jack's burgeoning relationship, causing lots of hesitancy on Jack's part and much uncertainty for the reader regarding their HEA.  Add in secrets that have followed Jack and Margaret across the country and readers will be left crossing their fingers for a HEA.

Music has always been a major part of Jack's life, the only thing he loves besides Margaret, and the thing he's most saddened by giving up when Margaret needs him most.  Because Jack and Margaret grew up in a family of money and political aspirations, Margaret and her mother's autism were things to be kept hidden.  They were a dirty little secret made worse after their mother's death and it was only through the power of their grandmother that kept Margaret from being institutionalized.  A single event though leaves Margaret's future in doubt as a vicious lie has them leaving their pasts behind and starting over in a small town that has both of them living in the shadows. Jack clearly loves Margaret and understands her like no other.  Their connection is heartwarming as they have their own language (as her autism leaves her far less communicative than Mark) and a bond that brought a tear to my eyes at times.  He's a devoted and loving brother focused solely on her happiness and a future where she'll reach her fullest potential.  His devotion to her, and fear over their past coming to light, leaves little time for romance or commitment despite how starved he is for a loving embrace.  Meeting Mark leaves him reeling as their first glance and touch is combustible.  It's not something he can ignore, or wants to ignore, but their burgeoning friends-to-lovers relationship doesn't go smoothly as doubts and fears have him pushing Mark away at a time when he needs help the most.  When certain truths come to light it changes everything for Jack and Mark, and for Jack and Margaret, and leaves readers on the edge of their seats rooting for a HEA.  Jack's very understanding when it comes to the quirks of autism which adds an intriguing element to his and Mark's lovemaking. It makes each encounter more meaningful and is an unspoken proof of his love for Mark.  Through every word and deed Jack shows himself to be an honorable man, a kindhearted one, who deserves to get his music back as that's part of a HEA he sacrificed much to achieve and that I was rooting for every step of the way.

When it comes to this story's depictions of autism the author is very successful. Even when no words were spoken you could understand what Mark and Margaret went through.  Their personal frustrations had me aching for them and cheering each time they surpassed other's expectations.  Margaret especially had me cheering as she was much wiser than she was given credit for.  She was honest and wanted nothing more for her brother than his happiness which had her playing matchmaker in surprising ways.  Overall I found the depictions sensitively handled as the sister of an autistic brother and easy to relate to as a disabled person myself and recommend it to those looking for romances that beautifully balance heavy issues with respect while retaining the romance. When it comes to the melodramatic aspects of the story though things fell a bit short. When a secret from the past comes to light I expected a bigger falling-out than that which occurred.  All the fears Jack had throughout the story appeared unnecessary and diminished what could've been a more powerful conclusion. The conclusion itself felt a bit incomplete as things just sort of ended.  While there's a definite HEA I wanted it wrapped up with a prettier bow.  Despite these small quibbles this was an engaging read that depicted disability in a positive light.  The romance was sweet yet sexy with interludes that were creative when dealing with disability and I applaud the author for showing the disabled as sexual beings as opposed to their often being labeled asexual.  On a whole I found this a delightful addition to the Bluewater Bay series and look forward to the next romance to scorch this small town.

My rating for this is a B.

*I got this book from NetGalley for review in exchange for my honest opinion.


G.B.Gordon worked as a packer, landscaper, waiter, and coach before going back to school to major in linguistics and, at 35, switch to less backbreaking monetary pursuits like translating, editing, and writing.
Having lived in various parts of the world, Gordon is now happily ensconced in suburban Ontario with the best of all husbands. Santuario is G.B. Gordon’s first published work, but many more stories are just waiting to hit the keyboard.




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  1. I love that the author didn't shy away from a disability that people don't like to talk about (as with most disabilities). I like tat we get to see a different side of Jack that most people, besides his sister, get to see.


  2. Having two autistic characters sounds really interesting. I love reading about how different types of people live and find love.

    Also, thanks for the review.


  3. Congratulations on the release of Bluewater Blues! I can't wait to read this! Thank you so much for sharing!
    ree.dee.2014 (at) gmail (dot) com

  4. I appreciate the review!

    vitajex at aol dot com

  5. Thank you for the lovely review, Jody, And for having me on your blog.

    1. TY GB for stopping by and for your kind comment! As a disabled person I'd love to see more books depicting our lives and appreciate the work you did with this release to portray autism in the positive light that you did.

      What do you have coming up next?

      The Scarf Princess

    2. Typing away on another BWB story. ;)

      I'm really glad you like Bluewater Blues. We all need to see ourselves reflected in stories. So very important.

  6. Thanks, everyone for stopping by and playing.

  7. Thanks for the review


  8. Thank you for the review!
    humhumbum AT yahoo DOT com

  9. Thank you for the thorough review! violet817(at)aol(dot)com

  10. Thanks for your review. I look forward to reading Jack's story.