Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Junk by Josephine Myles

fpo  Junk by Josephine Myles is a sweet M/M romance between a hoarder and the decluttering expert that comes to help. Jasper is a librarian who simply can't bear to let any piece of paper with words on it go into the trash bin without thinking about the potential information that may be lost to civilization. Any book or newspaper the library or a student (Jasper works at an academic library) wants to throw away is rescued from the trash bin by Jasper and taken home. His house becomes so overwhelmed with books and papers that there are whole rooms he no longer is able to enter. Luckily Jasper isn't so far gone that he can't see that he needs help. Knowing that he can't do it on his own, Jasper seeks professional help. That helps takes the shape of twin brother and sister, Lewis and Carroll (their mother is a serious Alice in Wonderland fan). Carroll may be bright and bubbly but it is Lewis that Jasper is immediately drawn to.

As a librarian and book collector myself (no books are cutting off access to any part of my home, thank you very much), Jasper's tendency to want to protect and preserve the written word was understandable. Obviously he had taken this a little too far. I've never been particularly interested in watching any of the reality shows about hoarding but it was interesting to see how Lewis and Carroll worked with Jasper and their other clients in helping them confront the various emotional issues that led to hoarding in the first place.

As for the romance, it was sweet if somewhat anti-climatic. That Jasper and Lewis would get together was never a question. In a romance, it is the journey that counts. Here the journey was both too quick and too drawn out. The two men have an immediate sexual attraction but Lewis has ethical concerns about getting involved with a client. So they do, but they don't, and then of course they do. Of the two lead characters, Jasper was the most intriguing, what with his hoarding and mother issues. Lewis didn't develop quite as much as I would have liked. He has issues with moving (and moving in) too fast in relationships and doesn't seem to have changed all that much by the end of the novel. Notwithstanding these quibbles, overall I enjoyed Junk. The hoarding angle was a new to me and it seemed to be handled well. This is the first book I've read by Myles and I look forward to finding what else she has written.

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