Book – What Everyone Deserves
Author – Dan Ackerman
Star rating - ★★★★★
No. of Pages – 222
Cover – Perfect!
POV – 3rd person, one character POV
Would I read it again – Yes!
Genre – Paranormal, LGBT, Alt. History, Period, 1950's
** I WAS GIVEN THIS BOOK FOR MY READING PLEASURE **
Reviewed for Divine Magazine
Wow! Initially, the blurb and intriguing cover caught my attention, but I'll admit I was a little nervous about starting it. I'm not really a historical reader, unless it's crime or archaeology based and even then there are very few periods that I've read and enjoyed (1800's, 20's etc) but I promised myself that I'd be adventurous since it sounded just way too good to miss out on.
I wasn't wrong. The attention to detail within the historical element was perfect. Not too overpowering, not incorrect or exaggerated, as often happens. It was like taking a snippet of 1950's life and making it real. Only, adding demons, vampires and supernatural creatures, obviously.
Quite honestly, I normally make at least 2 dozen notes while I'm reading, so that I can point out various aspects of the story with accuracy when it comes to writing my review. I didn't do that here. I was too engrossed in the story to highlight or note anything other than the brilliant pieces of dialogue that made me melt. Because that's what this book did. I came in a little nervous, unsure of what I'd get, but with a whole lot of expectations. The story made it all pointless. There was nothing to be nervous about. And my expectations? Blown away! It was absolutely nothing like I'd thought and everything I didn't realise I'd wanted.
June was the perfect MC. Not only for giving us his POV but also to be focused on in every aspect. I loved the little moments when he pottered with his plants, when he made herbal concoctions, when he held babies and helped people. They were, perhaps, some of the most normal and relatable moments in the story, but they also gave us a deep insight into who June was, at heart. The only times his golden heart was made more clear to me was when he was with Satan. Their interactions made my heart melt.
Honestly, I spent about 80% of the story wanting to give June a huge hug and keep him safe, half wishing he'd get James Kelly as he wanted and half wishing that he'd give it all up and end up madly in love with Satan instead. (I know, I'm weird that way) Then there was Kaveon! Ugh, I wanted to murder him for hurting June and smack James Kelly, then give him a shake to wake him up.
Overall, I got way too attached to this book. Well, to June in particular. He just stole my heart very early on and never gave it back. His interactions with James Kelly kept me on the edge of my seat, because JK is such a prickly customer. And the way he was with babies! I loved that we got to see June at work so much. It was adorable.
Although the story deal with some real 1950's issues – discrimination, homophobia, interracial couples and hate crimes – it did it in a way that perfectly suited the characters and the story. Again, it wasn't over-exaggerated or made into something it wasn't, but it wasn't swept under the rug either.
There was no explicit sex, but a few references and hints to it, but I loved that. This isn't a book that needed sex in any form to bolster it. It didn't need anything but what it had. Heart, compassion, friendship and the whole will-they-wont-they story of June and James Kelly.
It was pretty perfect and very satisfying to read. That last page just left me with enough questions, but even more answers, so that I was perfectly happy to believe they could go on and have their HEA without the need for me to see it or know it.
“It did not hurt, he realized, to be insulted, it hurt because James Kelly had been the one to do it and June had been holding out with the idiotic hope that although they would never be anything more, that they could have at least been friends.”
““You deserve what everyone deserves.”
“To be with someone who you care about, who cares about you, and neither of you makes each other do things you don't want to do.””