Title and Link: Couched as a Question (Charity Sip Blitz Leather Bound)
Author: Jane Davitt
Publisher: Torquere Press
Cover Artist: n/a
Buy link: n/a
Genre: Contemporary M/M
Length: Short story/29PDG pages/appr. 7,800 words
Rating: 4 stars out of 5
A guest review by LadyM
Review summary: Light, funny story about an established couple at the turning point in their relationshipBlurb:
When Matt’s partner Jordan suggests redecorating, Matt’s agreeable until he discovers it means getting rid of the red couch. They bought that couch together, and they’ve done a lot more than sit on it. It means a lot to Matt and if Jordan’s bored of it, maybe it’s not the only part of Jordan’s life he wants to change…
Matt and Jordan are in relationship for over two years. When Jordan decides to redecorate their apartment and suggests getting rid of the red leather couch they bought together, it ignites all Matt’s insecurities.
I enjoyed Couched as a Question very much. It was a quick, light read with some humor thrown in. I liked both guys very much as well as their friend Rob, the only other significant character in the story. We don’t really get their ages, but they are both old enough to be accomplished professionals, with Matt owning a landscaping company. They lead a comfortable life together and they are very much in love, which makes seeing Matt getting worked up about the couch very funny.
You see, for Matt, the red leather couch symbolizes everything good and sound in his relationship with Jordan: it was the first thing they bought together and they had some sexy and gentle times on it. These were shown through some well-integrated flashbacks and provided us with the good insight in men’s relationship and its progression. For Jordan, the couch is a piece of furniture that simply doesn’t fit the new color scheme. Matt wants Jordan to know how he feels, but Jordan cannot read his mind. Though he realizes this isn’t rational at all, Matt cannot stop himself. He feels hurt and resentment and his imagination gets the better of him, so much so that he fails to see how his behavior affects Jordan. The lack of communication between the two men or, better said, Matt’s failure to communicate his feelings to the man he loves would probably get irritating in a longer work. As it is, you can only shake your head and laugh at Matt’s silliness, though his charm and sense of humor also help. Jordan is a nice counterbalance to Matt. He clearly loves Matt and, by the end of the story, it becomes clear just how much. Though he comes across as young and excitable, in this story at least, he is the more mature one. Sensing that something is wrong, he tries to initiate the conversation to no avail.
Rob, Matt’s childhood friend, acts as a voice of reason. Though the author hints that he has a crush on Matt, he is supportive of the couple and has a significant role in resolving the situation. I very much enjoyed the banter between him and Matt, because it perfectly showed their personalities. This is one example:
“You’re so hard-core, Matt. So macho.”
The hell? “I’m a landscape gardener. I plant petunias in patterns.”
Couched as a Question is well-written, quick read. For all that it’s light and funny, it has one of the better definitions of committed love I’ve encountered in fiction.
“And wasn’t that what love was all about? Not the immediate bone-melting lust and roller-coaster emotions, but the promise of it all lasting, mellowing into something that got stronger, better every year.”
Well worth your time. Recommended.