…we're keeping our name but expanding our offerings!
Ever since Ben’s childish dare caused Nazil to break his arm, the two have been inseparable best friends. Over the last three years, Ben has grown accustomed to Nazil’s outspoken personality and crazy schemes, but he is totally unprepared for the secret Nazil has been hiding–Nazil’s feelings for Ben go way past friendship. Spurred into action by a family move out of state, Nazil finally confesses. After the initial shock wears off, Ben finds that he returns Nazil’s affection. Now they must pull off Nazil’s wildest scheme yet in order to convince Nazil’s homophobic parents that he should stay behind with Ben when the rest of them move away.
His Familiar Scars is a slice-of-life short story that covers one of my favorite tropes: friends-to-lovers. Add in the YA/NA virgin factor, and oh, how sweet it is.
Ben and Nazil have been buddies for a long time, and they’re so completely different from one another they’re pretty much the most perfect match ever. Ben is reserved, reasonable and logical; he’s a thinker. Nazil is loud, brash and impulsive; when Nazil speaks, people are probably going to cringe. (As in, “did he really just say that???”)
Just as the boys are about to be separated by Nazil’s move, Nazil confesses his attraction to Ben by way of a kiss. (And then some, hubba hubba.) Ben is heartbroken over Nazil’s imminent departure, and the news—plus the kiss, duh—help him realize he has some deep-rooted feelings for his BFF.
One minor thing, though: Ben never considered the idea that he might be gay.
Hilarity ensues when the guys come together to hatch out a plan for Nazil to stick around. Can they stay together? Can they become more than friends? Do they want to? Well, no. Not yet. The fact is, Nazil’s family life isn’t rainbows and butterflies. The book is called His Familiar Scars for a reason. Nazil has scars. Lots of scars, both inside and out.
For me, the best part of this novella was the humor. There were moments with Ben’s mom and twin sister that were laugh-out-loud funny. The sexy time was inferno-hot, be warned (not complaining, mind you!). On the flip side, there was some pretty heavy stuff happening with/to Nazil that I felt like could have and should have been more fleshed out. Ben’s sexual epiphany—he thought all along he liked the ladies—probably should have been a heavier discussion, too.
Those few niggles aside, I enjoyed Myrick’s writing a lot, and I look forward to reading more from this fun new author.