SECOND POSITION by Katherine Locke is one of those books that sadly has been buried in my ebook TBR for far, far longer than I wanted it to be. I finally managed to read it over the past two weeks (in spurts at work which was a mistake as it’s hard to explain to a coworker while you’re coming back from your lunch break trying to hide tears – oops?), and it was a delight of a kick you right in the feels read.
I think what set this apart for me was how well the romance was woven in with Aly struggling to find her feet and Zed’s adjustment to having her back while still struggling to figure out if he actually has her or not. This is a messy, codependent relationship, one that in some ways makes them both so much better, but at the same time could (and has in the past) tear them to pieces if they aren’t careful. It just felt very real and grounded in reality in a way that some of my romance reads (for all that I do love them) just aren’t. I guess it felt less like wish fulfillment and more like the kind of relationship that a normal person dealing with their issues could still strive for, if that makes sense. Honestly, I can’t explain just how much I love these two and their story. I ached for them all throughout this book.
And gah the dance and music and theater references everywhere made my heart just sigh with happy. I miss being involved in an art community of any kind (beyond books & writing I mean), and this is making me more and more tempted to find somewhere to take dance classes again. I was never terribly good at it LOL, but it centered me much the way Aly did, and frankly I feel like I could use that sort of a hobby again after reading this.
Any way! Another thing I loved about this book was the way it was formatted – we got multiple POVs with both Aly and Zed in first person, but also had the therapy sessions which were mostly dialogue, and the final chapter of the book intrigued the hell out of me with the way it was written. I’ll leave it as a surprise for those of you who haven’t read it yet, but it just worked so well for me. I couldn’t even tell you why – it just did.
I do need to use some trigger warnings here, I think. SECOND POSITION is an #ownvoices book for some hard topics: specifically Aly’s anxiety, depression, and eating disorder. Locke does not remotely shy away from these, and in fact one of the POV’s is centered on Aly’s therapy visits which are handled really well, I thought, and rounded out the story in a very interesting way. It could definitely be hard for someone suffering from any of those three issues to read though, so just be prepared. There is also a scene of self-harm related to Aly's struggles, as well.Also, Zed is an amputee, so trigger warning for anyone that might be an issue for as well.
Overall, this was just a brilliantly written book, and part of me wants to immediately dive into the sequel! While of course the other part of me is reminding me that I was crying at work & recommending I wait until the weekend. We’ll see which of me wins that argument LOL.
Oh! Also, this is another book for my #diversitybingo2017 card for the “Own Voices” square!