Cover Design:Black Jazz Design
Length:60,000 words approx.
Shay Maloney is living his dream—on tour with his pirate/folk-rock band. But you can’t know where you’re going until you know where you’re from, and that’s where moody filmmaker and researcher Ollie Pietruska comes in.
The band’s management persuades Shay to let a television company film a documentary about his roots beyond his adoptive Irish family, and Ollie comes into his life knowing more about Shay than Shay’s ever known about himself.
But while Ollie holds the key to Shay’s past, he’s also hiding deep scars. Even as the hardships of the tour bring them closer, Ollie’s demons threaten the blossoming romance. They might both reach the breaking point before Ollie realises he’s been standing on the edge of the world for too long, and it’s Shay who holds the key to his future.
Just the facts: A friends-to-lovers, rock star, road-tripping romance, with a guaranteed happily-ever-after.
This is a beautiful novel, always engaging and often funny in spite of how emotional it is. – Kinzie Things
My thoughts bit: I loved this novel. This is the first M/M romance I’ve read in a long time that I was compelled to give my highest rating. Not only is this book well-written and absolutely absorbing! It’s got a fantastic cover! The premise for this book is really original… certainly nothing that I’ve ever read before. Shay is on tour in Ireland with his band, Smuggler’s Beat, when Ollie arrives to film a documentary about Shay’s family history.
The basis for the documentary is that Shay is adopted and doesn’t know anything about his birth family. When Ollie appears on the tour bus, it’s clear that he knows a lot about Shay’s past. The “schtick” for the filming will be that he reveals information to Shay as they travel on tour. As the two men work together, they get to know each other. They’re very different in their approaches to life… they each have their burdens. Shay is a diabetic and a bit of a loner while he’s on the road. Ollie… well, he has some secrets that keep him at arm’s length from Shay… until he isn’t.
I loved the way Leigh wrote the two main characters in this novel. Shay is creative, reserved in some ways even though he’s a brightly burning light on stage. Ollie is tortured by something that happened in his past… I won’t reveal that here because I want you to read about it. He’s a creative filmmaker, definitely burying himself in his work. He’s drawn to Shay when he’s on stage, when he’s sleeping or when he’s simply sitting with him. It’s clear from the very beginning of the novel that he doesn’t want a relationship and he certainly doesn’t want one with someone like Shay.
Shay has live his entire life with the restrictions of being a diabetic…taking solace in the few hours that he can forget about it. He loves music… lives for it really. He plays multiple instruments… and one of the first things that Ollie reveals is that the musical talent may come from his ancestors.
There are some dark issues/themes in this book. Ollie’s trauma is a result of an accident in his past. It’s changed his entire life in more ways than one. When he meets Shay, he’s unable to even consider having a relationship because of the walls he’s built around himself. The two men seem to bond with each other initially over Shay’s illness. Being on the road is difficult for Shay in terms of managing his health. For some reason, he is immediately comforted by Ollie’s presence.
The progression of Ollie and Shay’s relationship was perfectly paced. It was believable and sweet… I loved the conversations they had; they were revealing and tender. It’s a beautiful romance that kept me guessing until the end.
I loved this novel and will gladly read anything else I can find by this author!
The warnings bit: Please be aware, I’m by no means an expert on what may or may not have the potential to disturb people. I simply list things that I think a reader might want to be aware of. In this book: (SPOILERS) descriptions of a car accident in the past resulting in burn injuries, description of severe burn scars, mentions of drug use and excessive drinking, a character is a diabetic, description of low blood sugar leading to illness.
Garrett Leigh is an award-winning British writer and book designer.
Garrett’s debut novel, Slide, won Best Bisexual Debut at the 2014 Rainbow Book Awards, and her polyamorous novel, Misfits was a finalist in the 2016 LAMBDA awards.
When not writing, Garrett can generally be found procrastinating on Twitter, cooking up a storm, or sitting on her behind doing as little as possible, all the while shouting at her menagerie of children and animals and attempting to tame her unruly and wonderful FOX.
Garrett is also an award-winning cover artist, taking the silver medal at the Benjamin Franklin Book Awards in 2016. She designs for various publishing houses and independent authors at blackjazzdesign.com, and co-owns the specialist stock site moonstockphotography.com with renowned LGBTQA+ photographer Dan Burgess.
I received an ARC of The Edge of the World by Garrett Leigh via Signal Boost Promotions in exchange for an unbiased review.