Friday, April 2, 2010

Review: Faith and Fidelity by Tere Michaels

This book falls into my M/M Reading Challenge.

I had seen several reviews of this book around the blogosphere and my curiosity was piqued. I really, really liked this book...with one reservation; which I'll address at the end of my review.

Evan Cerelli is a NY City cop. His wife died one year previous to the events in this story, leaving him alone to raise 4 children - 2 teenage girls and a set of younger twins. He'd basically been going through the motions of living since his wife died, living his life in a fog. While at a retirement party for a fellow cop, he meets Matt Height, a former Detective who'd left the force a few years earlier after turning in a dishonest fellow cop.

Evan and Matt each see something familiar, I think, in the other, and they start meeting for beer and to talk about their losses - for Evan, his wife and for Matt, the job that he'd loved. Their meetings grew into a friendship, then something more. Matt started having dreams about Evan which confused and excited him; dreams about being with Evan. He fought the thoughts going through his head because he didn't want to ruin this friendship, one of the only friendships that he'd had in a long time.

One thing leads to another and Evan and Matt confront the feelings that have been developing between them. Both are concerned about their jobs, Evan's kids, and other people's reactions. They start the relationship and it grows deeper, until Evan starts having second thoughts.

I really liked this story. The scenes between Evan and Matt were so tender and sensual and emotionally charged. The wants and fears and desires were well-written and my heart ached for both men when things got rocky.

Ms. Michaels' secondary characters were engaging and a nice foil for Evan and Matt's relationship. I liked Evan's boss Vic, and his partner Helena - they were both open and accepting of this surprising relationship between Evan and Matt. Their concern for Evan was heartwarming and sincere. Evan's kids were realistic and enchanting, not obnoxious at all, and added another layer to this already intriguing story.

Here's my reservation: It was hard for me to believe that two previously heterosexual men would suddenly (or gradually, as the case may be) fall in love. I just don't see it happening; probably because of my belief that you're either born gay or you're not, you don't actually get to choose. BUT, the story was so well-written and engaging it was easy to fall right into it and take an interest in their lives.

I give Faith & Fidelity 4 1/2 out of 5 stars - I really enjoyed reading it!


  1. I LOVED this book!!!

    I thought their evolution into becoming gay worked in this book. I felt Matt maybe always had gay tendencies, but denied it. And I think for Evan, it was a complete surprise, and they way he deals with it (both good and bad) made sense.

    Overall - it is a beautiful story. You need to read the sequel now ;)

    My only squishy moments were when they were making out on the couch with the kids upstairs...hello, they could walk down any moment!

  2. Wonderful review Patti :) This book really made an impact on me, and definitely gave me the romance that have been lacking in the books I've been reading. I can't wait for the next one!

  3. I really need to get these books NOW...thankfully I still have a small GC at fictionwise :) Thanks for this great review Patti, I'm so sold on this book LOL

  4. Glad you enjoyed it, Patti!

    Re: your reservation. You're right, that's probably unlikely. BUT - it definitely can happen that people realize they are bisexual or gay later in life. Lots of societal conditioning against being other than hetero. Author Rick R. Reed is a good example.

  5. Patti so happy you liked this book, this was one of my favs!

    I can see Mandi's point. I think the main characters always had some tendencies but never acted on them. Hubs used to work with someone that was married, had a son, & then realized he was gay and now lives happily ever after with his partner. The End. So I guess I could believe that aspect of the story. And I admit I do like man love books where one of the main character just 'discovers' he might be gay.

    Awesome review!!!!

  6. Mandi: I'm so ready for the sequel! And I was holdling my breath at the couch scene too,LOL!

    Stacy: Thanks - The romance in this book was wonderful - I really liked it.

    Leontine: Definitely get it!!

    Chris: Hmmm...hadn't thought of societal conditioning, good point!

    Smokinhotbooks: You have another good point. Even with my reservation though I thought it was well-written and a great read!

  7. Like you Patti, I have seen this book around blog land too.. and want to try my hand it at as well. And I love your honest review of this book. I like your reservation about the book. I think that is something that stays in the back of our mind when reading m/m or even f/f books. That the characters have always been gay or les or whatever. But in reality... don't we all have those tendencies... (our girl crushes, lol). Oh a serious note, I loved your review for this book!!!
    Thanks for sharing!

  8. Yay, you really enjoyed this book! It's one of my favorite reads, I loved it!
    I can see your point about the being born gay thing, but I didn't feel your reservation while I was reading the book. I know a few people that are bi so I wasn't surprised at them discovering their gay or bi feelings in a later stage of their lives.
    I agree with you that the scenes between Matt and Evan are tender and sensual and emotional charged. Tere Michaels knows very well how to make me feel what her characters feel. I loved that about this book too!
    Wonderful review! :)

  9. I might have felt the same way, 2 straight men just falling in love, well at least it was good :=)

  10. I've been looking for something to fill my 'Adrien English' void, and this sounds PERFECT!
    Great review, I'm going off to buy it right now!

  11. Oh, Cecile, you will love this!

    Janna: "Tere Michaels knows how to make me feel what my charactes feel" <---so true!

    Blodeuedd: It really was a good read!

    Danielle: I really think you'll like it! (It's nice to pimp back your way once in a while, LOL)

  12. As a working Law Enforcement Officer I can say that there are many gay officers that are riding around out there. Most are out of the closet (but some aren't). As I said before, ain't gonna happen in real life! They will remain in the closet for fear that the pressure from the job will either make them quit or worse.

    Hope you don't mind that I commented on this, my dear. I just wanted to give you my honest opinion:0