Review: Starfish and Coffee

Starfish and Coffee
Starfish and Coffee by Kele Moon

My rating: 4.5 of 5 stars

Slice my heart into ribbons and then pour salt into the wounds as I lay crushed. This is how I felt through many parts of this book. Alex and Matt spend a summer of kinky love together. Matt is the rich boy slumming with the “local” boys by working as a short order cook in a rundown cafĂ©.

Ms. Moon writes lovely moving books for me. She spends time building the characters and showing how their family and choices lead them to where they are today. She invokes emotions from the start of the book. Within the third page, my heartstrings are already yanked hard. “He looked up, seeing Matt’s handsome face fade away and turn to dust. He reached frantically for Matt’s shoulders, once powerful l and strong. Alex’s fingers slipped through the air, clutching at emptiness. Matt was nothing but a memory now, and Alex had known it. It’d been years since he’d gotten more than just a taste of love lost in these nighttime fantasies; even his subconscious was jaded and burned.” Now if that doesn’t immediately set the tone for love lost, I don’t know what does. Ms. Moon definitely knows how to show rather than tell.

Alex is a carefree boy who wants to enjoy life and he does to its fullest. Meeting Matt and falling in love with him was not on his plans for a happy enjoyable life. Matt is an uptight rich boy with too many expectations. He sees his regimented future through his father’s life – a life of stress, ulcers, heart attack and nasty wife. Matt is taking a year off to think about what he wants to do after college and meets the fun loving yet exasperating Alex.

Ms. Moon does an excellent job of flipping between the past and present. The reader knows upfront something terrible happened. Yet the journey to this heartbreak is filled with touching moments of young love. When the conflict hits, it is no surprise to anyone - the characters or the readers. The interaction between the characters is really what makes this book so good. Seeing their struggles from each one’s perspective helps gain insight. It also helps the reader bond and root for the characters.

The dialog between the characters is also awesome. Ms. Moon excels with witty retorts and insightful musings. There is always an evil character in her books and it’s always a family member. It’s sad in this manner. For it seems it’s always the family which tears the lovers apart. It would be nice to see a protagonist who is actually trying to do what is best for the lovers and not be fully evil. This would shoot the book over the edge in conflicted feelings and heartbreak. I love this type of angst filled book. This latest book reminds me of Megan Hart books. I love Megan Hart books because they make me feel so much and they always make me cry. Ms. Moon does the same for me. The difference is Ms. Moon still gives the reader a happily ever after while Ms. Hart leaves me gasping on the floor without any hope of resolution. This m/m romance is highly recommended to readers who want to feel more than just a sweet romance. It’s a book for readers who want a love conquers all theme.

* Reviewed for BDSM Book Reviews

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