I'm an avid reader and reviewer of romance books, especially m-m and erotica. You can find me on http://www.goodreads.com/user/show/4669232-baba-marcus-tyler-tate-dan-ty-hunter
2.5 stars. Review completed March 4, 2014
"Shostakovich wrote the symphony when things were pretty rough for him… The dissonances are all about that. Suffering."
Shostakovich -- Symphony No. 5
Let's not beat around the bush. I suffered through Encore because frustration paved the way through the entire plot. I'm fine dealing with problems (emphasis on dealing), not running away and leaving people frustrated and angry. Urgh. I've enjoyed Shira Anthony's books in the past and I've had pretty high hopes that I would like Encore as well. My rating does by no means reflect the quality of the author's writing. In fact, the writing was good as expected but my low rating reflects my feelings and of those, I assure you, I've had enough. Unfortunately, they belong to the annoys-the-heck-outta-me category.
Let me arrange a nice bouquet of flowers irritating issues:
LACK OF COMMUNICATION. LACK OF COMMUNICATION. LACK OF COMMUNICATION. It feels like a mantra and one that gets old fast. I caught myself soliloquizing numerous times while reading Encore. Yeah, Baba, encore une fois parce que ce n'est jamais assez. It was like an effin' and unwanted encore all the time. BTW, the let's-be-honest-with-each-other conversation took place at (view spoiler) Not even the well internalized phrase Better late than never could really placate my agitated state of mind. Granted, I did like the final 15 % and yet the book was beyond saving for me. That ship had sailed, so to speak. Besides, Encore is not your common romance book because the main protagonists spend a huge majority of the plot apart from each other and that didn't sit all too well with me either.
I'm fine. It's not your fault. You didn't do anything wrong. Blah, blah blah. Just…please, talk already and come clean for $*+!?!!£^!!?=&% sake!
Did I say they did not talk about things that bothered them?
I can imagine it must have been tough being queer in the 70s, and I do understand that Roger was afraid of being openly gay but he couldn't even admit it when he was alone with John. Also, even as a grown man when he didn't depend on his parents' financial support anymore, Roger did not have enough backbone to come out to his parents. It's all Miranda here and Miranda there (Roger's mom). He was under her thumb and it was not reasonable. Yeah, let's keep mommy happy, shall we. Although when Roger turned (view spoiler) Sorry but that was too late.
Roger was responsible (view spoiler) of assuming responsibility and acknowledging that he was guilty, he wallowed in misery and self-pity. He felt sorry for himself FOR YEARS because he couldn't (view spoiler)
And then there was this situation in New York. Roger and John were lovers for four years and during the time in New York Roger had a hard time supporting John and his dreams. Due to Roger's weak psyche he (view spoiler) Wow. Unbelievable. This must be love. No, scratch that, they're (view spoiler) That's the stuff that dreams are made of. Not. Thinking back about all those "special" moments makes my anger flare up again. Well, and when Roger FINALLY (view spoiler) Oh my, Baba calm down and take a deep breath.
Both of them were very jealous...
It's quite telling that my favorite scene of Encore was when Roger (view spoiler) Alex Bishop, hero of Prelude. In fact, both main characters of Prelude make a cameo in Encore. I've read three books by Shira Anthony and Prelude is still my favorite.
Schubert -- Fantasy in F minor D.940 (part 1)
Well, Mr. Schubert, are you going to sit there watching me play half the piece, or are you going to join me?"
"I thought you said my piano playing was deficient," Roger said as he sat to John's left on the bench.
"You could convince me otherwise." John's eyes sparkled in obvious challenge.
I love a good coming-of-age story and the premise of Encore did sound promising. It is very unfortunate, however, that certain plot twists and the MCs didn't really do it for me. Regardless, I hope you'll enjoy it more than I did.
"God. I've missed you so damn much." Like a fucking hole in my heart. My life.
If you'd like to read my spoilers then check out the GR link below.