Title: Treble Maker (Perfect Harmony #1)
Author: Annabeth Albert
Publisher/GR Link: GR
Genre: MM Contemporary
Vice: OFY, Religion, Musicians, Goth
Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars
Cover Impressions: I really like it.
Best Line: "'I want to go home...'
'No, to us.'
And then he really did cry, right there in the parking lot...and thank God Cody wasn't the type to care, because he wrapped his arms around Lucas and held him tight."
Synopsis: On Perfect Harmony, the ambitious competitors heat things up on stage and off…
Cody Rivers is determined to be a rock star, but couch-surfing between bar shows gets old fast. Joining an a cappella group for a new singing competition show could be his last chance at real fame—unless the college boy from the heart of the country messes it up for him. Lucas Norwood is everything gothy, glittery Cody is not—conservative, clean-cut, and virginal. But when a twist in the show forces them together, even the sweetest songs get steamy as the attraction between them lights up the stage. Lucas wants to take it slow, but Cody’s singing a different tune—and this time it maybe a love song…
Impressions: I am a sucker for a sexy bad boy musician, and the idea of pairing him up with a repressed, conservative shy boy? Oh sign me right up!
What I got when I settled in with Treble Maker was something even more than the fun fluff I was expecting. I really enjoyed seeing Lucas wrestle with his identity and ultimately choose a path that was his own. I liked that though his parents were religious conservatives, Alberts explored some of the complexities within religious communities and they way they approach homosexuality. This wasn't simply a group of bigots holding up their crosses, and Lucas was a guy who was whipping himself each night for his sins. Lucas was a man who knew who he was and was trying to fit a square peg in a round hole...and when he comes face to face with Cody, who is everything he dreams of, he realizes he needs to really examine his own hopes and desires. Lucas is no pushover, though, and thats part of what captivates Cody's attention.
Cody has had a rough road in life, and he has survived by ensuring that he never has to rely on anyone but himself. He sees little worth in himself except that which will bring him closer to his dreams of success. Not surprisingly, this even affects his music performance, when he has to rely on others. When Lucas meets him, while he enjoys their verbal spars, he also comes to realize there is more to life than one kind of success.
I love a great "teaching" book, and though a lot of this is about Cody teaching Lucas how to embarrass his sexuality, this goes beyond that plot, and shows Lucas teaching Cody how to connect emotionally to someone else.
I read this book in a day, and not because it is a quick read, but because I didn't want to put it down. I loved the push/pull of their romance, and given their backgrounds and personalities I couldn't imagine any pacing that would make more sense. Both of these MC's are strong minded men, and they have to learn to give in to each other, and to accept the parts of each other that will not change. I have loved Alberts novellas, but she did a great job with a full length novel, and I loved being a part of the relationship between Cody and Lucas.
This had a great setting and well developed secondaries, and a complexity of characters that I really admired. There were no stereotypical "bad" guys or all good guys, and that made this novel believable, engaging and authentic. The romance was a perfect mix of angst, sweetness, and sexiness, and I didn't want to put it down until Cody and Lucas had everything they deserved!