Felt vaguely bad for being tepid on Slam (not that anyone cares, except me) - so I thought I'd write something about how much I adore this.
I think Merrow might be the Queen of short-form fiction. It's just a perfect little jewel of a book. An ideal comfort read - "like your favourite cup of tea" as Liz says in her review.
An unlikely love story between a Cambridge professor and ... well ... a tattoo-ed giant of a man who is generally considered to be a bit stupid, the twist being that the narrative is told entirely from the latter's POV. What that they have in common -- apart from desire, and then love -- is, hilariously enough, sensitivity. They are both a little lost, a little melancholic, a little inclined to to be too-hurt by the world, despite their disparities in appearance and life experience.
It's so completely lovely to see them come together and slowly, carefully learn to make each other happy. And, obviously, the book very gently explores a lot of the issues closest to my heart: class and masculinity and the mutual care-taking of love.
Because it's a Merrow book, this is funny as hell, but it's got as much as heart as it's narrator.
I reiterate: I have all the love for this book.