Monday, 25 January 2010

January 26 – A Day Out With The Ladies and Willa

 

 

Once a week for a good while now I visit a set of old girls at a care home and read to them and every couple of weeks I drag all my old books or books that I have collected over a period of weeks into the home for the ladies to read.

I try not to discuss them on here because for one – they are the bane of my existence – they are cheeky, opinionated and just plain embarrassing and I cannot imagine my life without them.

Something happened with us last week and for a few days I was not only trying to get over the fact that I had exposed these ladies to their first m/m books which they took it in their stride and like a duck to water, but that they still have what to takes to embarrass the hell out of me.

While delivering my latest set of books to the home – the girls decided to give my bag a  good old search, I have given up on them,  it’s no use telling them not to do it, I just check to make sure all the incriminating stuff is left at home.

Anyhow I had my ereader (Fitzroy) with me and the first book on top was none other than Willa Okati – And Call me in The Morning. By the time I came back to where we were set up to read they were already on page seventeen ( they do know how to manipulate my Fitzroy, we have all been together a long time).... So my entire plan to read Charlotte Lamb – Runaway Wife went right through the window.  

 

I should have realised that something was up when the care worker asked them what was up and their response was – “They were checking out my Alternative reads”…  That’s the code for risqué reading material (once again, we have been together too long, we have codes)

Anyhow it took me two lots of reading session to get through the books – but it was the discussion after that made this day one of the best and one of the most embarrassing since a long time.

I am just going to give the highlights of this book for me and the girls, but to read a sum up of the book itself check out Jesse review of it…

 

While they took the teasing in stride, at times it was frustrating that no one believed they were just friends. One day while out with their colleagues the constant teasing became unbearable so Zane suggested privately to Eli one way to put a stop to it. His plan: that they kiss each other and hopefully find it a horrible experience,…..

Jesse © Reviews By Jesse Wave 

 

Willa Okati

 And Call Me in the Morning

Genre: LGBT Erotic Contemporary
Length: Novel
Take two, and call me in the morning.
Eli and Zane. Colleagues at work and close friends, though on the surface it's an unexpected friendship between an odd couple. While Zane took the "high school to college to med school" track, medicine is Eli's second career and the best choice he ever made. He has work that he loves, an extended second family of colleagues and friends, and Zane.
So why does everyone make such a big deal about the pair of them?
Yes, they spend a lot of time together. It doesn't mean they're a real couple. When teased about it one too many times by their colleagues, Zane challenges Eli to set the record straight with a kiss to prove there's absolutely no chemistry between them.
Neither expected a spark to ignite between them. More than a spark. Desire. Passion.
Zane wants to try getting up close and personal again to see if it was a one-time fluke or something more. Eli thinks he's too old to jump the fence now, but he can't say no to Zane and he doesn't want to.
Truth be told, Eli's not so sure they can set the record straight after all.

 

Our thoughts

Let me declare straight off  that Willa Okati work is a hit and miss for me, but I was lead to the Book by Kris from Kris 'n' Good Books because of the cover  - I was loving it. It is following in the vein of a set of recent releases where the story line is about mature men and the cover is reflecting this. I was pleased.

Once the book was finished the girls wanted to know if this is what I read when I am home – I of course said yes and I have been reading it for a long time. This led to them wanting to know why they were not aware of this.

I cut straight to the point and told them I was not sure if they could handle it and I was not sure how open-minded they would be to m/m lifestyle and the books in general. I could see the hurt in a few of them, just by their shoulders and a little drop in their devil may care  attitude – but I explained as best as I could and we had a little chat about it and  I am not sure if we are OK, but we moved on and chatted about the book.

To say I was impressed by how they took this book apart is an understatement.

 

Highlights.

  • The book started with guys who are comfortable with each other and are not shy about this, so a good start.
  • Enough differences between them – but they are mature enough to appreciate the commonalities and have fun with it.
  • No double talk was in this – once the guys decided to have ago at figuring out what was between them, they didn’t pussy foot around - plain speaking all round.
  • Supports cast  - well done, well places, very defined and lots of balances at work eg.

                 .Younger guy being very insightful and counselling older guy

                 .Female cast was not the obligatory hateful creatures – I  loved the two ladies in this – they meant well and they acted it and made a difference to both Eli’s and Zane’ life.

                 .I Loved the sort of hero worship thing that was happening in this as well – so underplayed, but there none the less and it was really sweet.

                 .We got a look at the men at play and at work and it was clear they had something between them.

         

  • Some genuine issues were dealt with – topical, suited the plot and dished out in such a way that even the ladies who are used to a different type of health care system could understand.
  • One thing I absolutely loved in this book was that there was none of the standard overuse words – Like,  mine, yours, forever etc… not one was in this book…  such a refreshing change.

 

Where the ladies fell in love with Zane and Eli.

 

Zane waved from his position stretched out on the couch, arms crossed under his head.
He'd loosened his tie and rolled up his shirt sleeves, taken off his shoes, but was otherwise
ready for anything. Right now, that seemed to be lying still with his eyes closed, listening to
something jazzy and bluesy wafting from his speaker system. Eli glanced at the iPod dock
and wished, for a moment, they still did records. A phonograph and a scratch every now and
then would make the picture perfect.

Willa Okati© And Call me in the Morning

 

“Still in my scrubs. I was so fucking spaced I didn't even think to shower, much less
change to my streets. You had me all tied up in knots, you know that?”
“Yet you're here,” Zane said.
Eli was better with the silences, not the words—quelle surprise, that—and it took him a
second to interpret this. “Where else would I want to be?” he asked, stating the plain facts.
“After a rough day, all I want is to go home.”

Willa Okati© And Call me in the Morning

 

 

The embarrassing moments

The ladies range from the ages 67years to 82years and I was sure there was going to be some embarrassing questions and they didn’t let me down.

 

Eli chuckled at himself, took the washcloth back and did a proper—better, anyway—job of
clean-up. That done, he collapsed on his back. In the wet spot. Bah; he couldn't be bothered
to move. He held one arm out at his side, silently beckoning Zane in.

Willa Okati© And Call me in the Morning

 

When we got to this part – they promptly asked me why the wet spot would be such a big deal

This was how it was phrase -  “I have slept in loads of wet spot before”.

and I wanted to die…. 

I barely had time to recover before they wanted to know why the fingers were used….

At this point I thought  - just kill me and be done with it..

I couldn’t take anymore…

Yup – I did not touch that topic -  I packed up and told them next week we will discuss it…

I am dreading next week…

What did I get myself into.. 

 

Bottom Line

I got this book specifically because of the cover. The cover suited the book but I was even more impressed with the book itself. I thought Ms. Okati took a well trodden product, used what was available to her, namely the characters, the support cast and some well place angst and made this book a winner.

She drew me in with the fun loving, but practical attitude that she gave her cast, the straight talking that she allowed them to toss out at will and used some topical issues to explore the strength of their characters.

With little to no fluffing around she literally cut right to the chase and produced a tightly written books with barely anything to moan about.

If you are looking for a book with a hell of alot of difference this is it. For me this was a wonderful reintroduction to Okati’s work.

 

20 Speak To Me:

Eyre on 26 January 2010 at 00:40 said...

First of all, I love that you go read to the ladies. That's just spectacular. I'm sure many of them don't have family who visit.

Secondly, I would have absolutely died if I had been in your position, but I'm sure the ladies had fun. Also, you've probably given them something to talk about for days to come.

This may be ageist of me, but I really don't want to think about grannies and wet spots. *shudders*

Please, please share with us how next week goes. You know they'll make you answer that question!

Chris on 26 January 2010 at 00:58 said...

First off, EH, let me just tell you how much I admire you for surviving the experience! I think I would've either expired on the spot or curled into a little ball under the table.

That said, I don't envy you the next session. Um, can you find some terribly dry and clinical descriptions online and take a laptop along so they can read those if you don't feel up to reading such?

Finally, I have to agree - WO is totally hit or miss for me, too. This one definitely goes on the TBB list.

Jenna Byrnes on 26 January 2010 at 01:35 said...

This was a wonderful post, EH. The book sounds great (the cover alone is amazing) and your day with the ladies made for quite a story!

Thanks for sharing.

Jenna

wren boudreau on 26 January 2010 at 02:02 said...

I just loved this post! Yes, the book was great. But your surrounding story about the ladies was wonderful! And I agree with Eyre - do write about the follow-up visit!

Smokinhotbooks on 26 January 2010 at 03:56 said...

EH sometimes I have nightmares where my boss somehow finds out that I read explict m/m romances and then I'm fired. I wake up with my heart pounding.

I totally admire you for going with the flow and not fainting with humiliation as I would have.

Ava March on 26 January 2010 at 05:12 said...

You made me totally bust out laughing!!! Oh, that was the best laugh I've had all day. I could so picture the old ladies asking their questions and you just wanting to crawl under the table.

Yes, you *must* tell us how it goes next week!

And the book sounds fabulous. I'm putting it in the TBR pile. I've read some books by Willa Okati that I really loved, and others were okay. This one sounds like one I'll definitely enjoy reading.

Kris on 26 January 2010 at 07:17 said...

Hey EH :)

I gigglesnorted my way through this post. You MUST tell us what happens next. I'm waiting on tenterhooks.

I'm thrilled that you ended up buying this book based on the cover. We both took the risk despite our hit and miss experiences with the author in the past and boy was it worth it. It was a terrific read and both the characters and their relationship were developed wonderfully. I'm so glad that your ladies liked it. :)

Erotic Horizon on 26 January 2010 at 08:57 said...

@Eyre..

I love reading to them and they make good company to be arround...

I think all of us have sort of adopted each other...

I'm sure the ladies had fun. Also, you've probably given them something to talk about for days to come.

This is what worries me a little - If I leave this too long it gives them time to prepare more embarassing questions..

This may be ageist of me, but I really don't want to think about grannies and wet spots. *shudders*

Did you hear me say Kill me and be done with it... This was a new high for them...


P.S - Just pray I survive next week in order to report back...

E.H>

Erotic Horizon on 26 January 2010 at 09:01 said...

@Chris...

I am a little surprise I survived as well - I am actually used to some of the things they get up to...

It was just the fact that I was not prepared to read that book - so they sort of caught me on the trot...

knowing them, if I go the clinical route they drag it out make it feel like a toothache for me...

HELP....

I do get that WO is a hit and miss with quite a few people - I am going to have to check out more of her work though...

This book was really good...

E.H>

Erotic Horizon on 26 January 2010 at 09:03 said...

@Jenna

Thank hon...

This was a good book - I do love the cover - alot..

My ladies are a class act and they do make my week, every week..

E.H>

Erotic Horizon on 26 January 2010 at 09:04 said...

@Wren..

Thank you...

I good fill a book with the things they get up to..

Pray that I survive next weeks visit and I am definitey sharing the outcome..

E.H>

Erotic Horizon on 26 January 2010 at 09:11 said...

@SHB

You know I think a lot of the ladies attitude have rubbed off on me - I am finding I am telling people more and more about the genre of book I read - without fear...

I took a stance in my library the other day...

As the ladies told me - Life is too short to worry about crap like that.(they do swear)..

I totally admire you for going with the flow and not fainting with humiliation as I would have.

I remember when they asked me what was my favourite sex position - I survived that - barely, so I think I might just scrap through this one... Just to find the right words...


E.H>

Erotic Horizon on 26 January 2010 at 09:15 said...

@Ava
I could so picture the old ladies asking their questions and you just wanting to crawl under the table

They literally box me in to read - so I have nowhere to go but drop my face between my knees or put a book up to my face, when I can't be brave any more...

They are going to kill me yet - I swear they will...

I will let you guys know.

I hope this one works for you, Like it did for us...

Enjoy hon...

E.H>

Erotic Horizon on 26 January 2010 at 09:31 said...

@Kris..

Glad I could give you some giggles - I will hon..

This book was so worth it - it would be lovely if she follow up with the young doctor and trainee chef story .. I loved them...

E.H>

Blodeuedd on 26 January 2010 at 13:42 said...

Lol, those ladies sound like so much fun. Good of you to do this, I'd sure appreciate it

Erotic Horizon on 26 January 2010 at 16:21 said...

#Blodeuedd...

They are absolute fun - after so long, I am addicted to them...

I think we all think the world of each other....

E.H>

Jude Mason on 26 January 2010 at 22:26 said...

E.H., I want to be one of those ladies! OMG, I would love to have seen your face. LOL Yes, I'm a cruel evil person...Snicker!

But, I love you. Oh, the book sounds wonderful. If I can get say a dozen women together could we get you to come and read for us?

You are amazing. Thank you so much for the chuckle, the wonderful review and the prospect of more to come.

Hugs

Erotic Horizon on 29 January 2010 at 12:41 said...

@Jude...

I think I have enough on my hand with those hoodlums - dont you be wanting to join them....

And the book is really wonderful... I will most certianly up date you guys....


E.H>

Tracy on 21 February 2010 at 20:42 said...

My heavens I would have been beet red and then some! When I told my 70 year old mother that I read m/m romance she said that she probably wouldn't mind it, as long as there was no sex! Hello? How can you leave the sex out! lol And to think, these wonderful ladies were thinking that the wet spot was no big deal. That's just too fun!

Good for you for reading to these women. You're a good soul.

Erotic Horizon on 23 February 2010 at 07:36 said...

@Tracy..

You willing told your mother you read m/m stuff... I think I left mine out so she figured it out herself...

I am not brave on that front...

These ladies are great - they do have a practical stiff upper lip attitude but they have been known to get down and dirty when it suits them...

Which in my case is whenever I am around...

Thank you...

E.H>