Title: Holiday Hootenanny by Ari McKay
Genre: M/M Romance, Contemporary
Published December 11th 2013 by Torquere Press, Inc
Length: 80 pages
Rating: 4 Stars
Review Copy Provided by Publisher
Clint Barker wants to take his relationship with boyfriend Joshua Cash to the next level, and that means meeting Josh’s family at Christmas. Clint is sure he can deal with anything, even though Josh has expressed reservations that his big, loud hillbilly family might be too overwhelming for an introvert like Clint to handle.
Josh loves his family, but the only other time he brought a boyfriend home to meet them, the guy didn’t last through dinner. Clint means everything to him, and though he knows his family means well, Josh is worried their nosiness and sheer overwhelming presence will drive Clint away.
Between having to fix an illegal still, getting treed by a wild hog, and barely avoiding a bar fight between rednecks and bikers, the holiday doesn’t get off to an auspicious start. Then at the traditional Christmas Eve
Hootenanny, Josh and Clint argue, and Clint later turns up missing. Will this spell the end of their relationship, or will a newborn in a stable work a little Christmas miracle for them both?
3.5 stars rounded up to 4
This is a short story about meeting the boyfriend's family for the holiday and taking the next step in their relationship. Josh spent Thanksgiving with Clint's small family, so Clint decides to spend Christmas with Josh's family. After Josh's last boyfriend ran away from meeting his family, Josh have some reservations about letting Clint meet the family and survive the holiday with their relationship intact.
Clint and Josh gets into lots of interesting adventures with meeting the family, drinking illegal moonshine, and running from a wild boar. The writing is easy to read and the story flows smoothly.
Clint is an only child and works as a vet in the city. He can't handle the crowds, drink Josh's family moonshine, and have no privacy in the farm house. I really like how Clint makes the effort to get along with the family because he loves Josh, even if life on the farm is out of his comfort zone. Josh also makes a big effort to help Clint adjust and survive the holiday. He also worries a lot about the relationship and that makes the story more fun and builds up the drama.
Overall, this is a very successful "meet the family" story for the holidays. Josh takes Clint on a grand adventure that's fun to read about.