Restaurant owner Tom Fearnes has loved his partner Cass for as long as he can remember, but their work often keeps them apart. When he meets a striking young man named Jake on the vibrant streets of Camden Town, their heady first encounter takes an unexpected turn.
Jake Thompson can hardly believe his luck when he wakes up in Tom’s bed. Tom is gorgeous, kind, and . . . taken. Tom’s explanation of his open relationship leaves Jake cold, but Tom is too tempting, and when hard times force Jake to accept Tom’s helping hand, he finds himself between two men who’ve lost their way.
Cass Pearson is a troubled soul. He loves Tom with all he has, but some days it feels like he hasn’t much to give. Jake seems like the perfect solution. Cass risks everything to push Jake and Tom together, but Jake resists, wary, until the darkness of Cass’s past comes to call. Then Jake finds himself the last man standing, and it’s time to dig deep and shine a light for the men he’s grown to love.
LAMBDA Finalist 2016
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As I have said a few times, I am a huge fan of Leigh’s works (and yes, I do have to say it often 🙂 ), so I jumped at the opportunity to grab Misfits while the book was free on Amazon. And as usual, my expectations were totally met.
This is the first Leigh book I’ve read that has polyamorous couple, and it was great. I loved how their relationship was described, how they progressed from a couple with open relationship to Tom and Jack being lovers and eventually Cass joining them.
Of course it would not be Leigh’s book if it did not deal with difficult themes. One is definitely Jack’s Tourette’s Syndrome, but it is not actually a huge difficulty, and not too much fuss is made about it. Tom generally ignores it, and Cass, whose life has been harder, and in some senses similar to Jack’s, talks to Jack about it, and even knows which ticks mean what. Now, I do not have personal experience with TS, the only things I know is what little I read in other sources, and from one Twitter action that generated tweets for a couple of hours to mimic TS. It was meant to raise awareness about TS. But it is obvious that Leigh, at least partly, knows what she is talking about. It is also helped by the fact that in author’s note she tells that she had talked with a person with TS. It certainly seems very realistic, but it is noted that it is not the same way for everyone. What is even more awesome is the fact that nothing feels like the book is trying to ‘teach’ you about it nor is it considered as something wrong or that you must pity Jack because of it. It’s just…acceptance.
The other difficult theme is Cass’ past. For most of the book, we don’t know much about it. But it is obvious in many things that Cass has been very affected by it. It is mentioned that he has a record, and temper as well, but only close to the end of the book is it explained more. He comes from a hard background, while Tom has been more shielded. Which is an excuse to Cass to keep his past from Tom as much as he can, so as not to ‘ruin’ his view of the world.
It is all happening in the world of restaurants as well. Tom meets Jack in a restaurant (and a bad one at that 🙂 ) and Cass is working as a cook, while Tom takes care of more business side of things.
I loved the realness of the characters, the setting, and the acceptance of differences they have. Not to mention some scenes were really hot J. The book did not have too much angst in it, much less than some other Leigh’s books (*looking at you, What Remains*), but it was great in many aspects and I recommend it, especially if you have read author’s books before, or if you want a m/m/m story…or just want to read about very real characters with their own flaws.
Garrett Leigh is an award-winning British writer and book designer, currently working for Dreamspinner Press, Loose Id, Riptide Publishing, and Fox Love Press.
Garrett’s debut novel, Slide, won Best Bisexual Debut at the 2014 Rainbow Book Awards, and her polyamorous novel, Misfits was a finalist in the 2016 LAMBDA awards.
When not writing, Garrett can generally be found procrastinating on Twitter, cooking up a storm, or sitting on her behind doing as little as possible, all the while shouting at her menagerie of children and animals and attempting to tame her unruly and wonderful FOX.
Garrett is also an award winning cover artist, taking the silver medal at the Benjamin Franklin Book Awards in 2016. She designs for various publishing houses and independent authors at blackjazzdesign.com, and co-owns the specialist stock site moonstockphotography.com with photographer Dan Burgess.