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Did Michael Ferraiuolo do a good job differentiating all the characters? How?
Michael Ferraiuolo delivers a solid performance without going over the top in this quiet love story.
Any additional comments?
Buyer be aware: The editing and sound quality at times was a little grainy and glitchy, but does not detract from the overall enjoyment of the story.
Riley is a boy who's been destroyed so badly he's considered a "lifer" at Hartfield, the mental institution he's been in for over two years, and he's been in and out of institutions for ten years. His story is heartbreaking and hopeful all at once because it's not until he has someone to show him his worth he begins to fight for himself and it is a beautiful thing to get to listen to.
Hunter, on the other hand, takes his own self-destruction to new lows. His circumstances end with a choice - confinement at Hartfield or prison. At Hartfield he gets roomed with Riley and it's frankly the best thing to ever happen to him. I just loved hearing the steps Hunter goes through to get better.
Ferraiuolo brings to life the pain, frustration, hope, happiness and love they find in a pretty hopeless place and at a very difficult time in both their lives.
I liked the dual POV, getting into both character's heads and seeing what they were feeling, because, frankly, there's a whole lot of "telling" in this story and not a lot of "showing"; a lot of what happens is mental, and for those looking for a steamy story - beware - the steam level here is really low. I didn't miss it though, because this really was more about the emotional connection more than any physical one.
To be honest, there were a couple of things I didn't like. I would have liked a little more action and steaminess; more time of them actually being able to be together. But my biggest complaint is I didn't like that I never got to find out what happened to Riley's parents or his abductors, John and Miranda Lee. I realize it's about how Riley's feeling and doing, but I would have loved at least one therapy session to include some tidbit about what had happened to the Lees and what ended up happening with his parents.
My imagination has John and Miranda Lee still in prison being tortured and beaten daily. I also hope his parents were shunned from their community after abandoning Riley and wound up being set upon by a vicious pack of wild dogs in some third world country - but that's more because I have a mean streak a mile wide, and I'm sure that's just me.
Bottom line: I enjoyed the realism, all the little things that add up to make this a sweet story about finding love in a hopeless place, and making yourself the best version of "you" before you make yourself an "us".
4 of 4 people found this review helpful
I really enjoyed this sweet and sad story of two men finding each other in a most unlikely place, a mental hospital. Riley has a tragic life and has resigned himself to being a "lifer" in the hospital he detests, but is the only home he has. Hunter's demons are a little less tragic but he still has to fight to overcome them. They find solace and then love in each other before they are torn away. I like the way the author handled the struggles of each man. It wasn't just "poof" and they are better. These men had to fight to be together. The narrator did a wonderful job bring these men to life. He really gave voice and emotion to this story.
2 of 2 people found this review helpful