The Impossible Boy - Anna Martin
Cover Design: Garrett Leigh
Length: 67,000 words
Ben Easton is not your average romantic hero. He's a tattooed, badass, wannabe rock star, working in a perfectly horrible dive bar in Camden Town. His life is good, and he's totally unprepared for how one man will turn it upside down.
Stan isn't your average heroine. As a gender-fluid man, he proudly wears his blond hair long, his heels sky-high, and his make-up perfectly executed. A fashion industry prodigy, Stan is in London after stints working in Italy and New York City, and he quickly falls for Ben's devil-may-care attitude and the warm, soft heart Ben hides behind it.
Beneath the perfect, elegant exterior, Stan has plenty of scars from teenage battles with anorexia. And it only takes the slightest slip for his demons to rush back in while Ben's away touring with his band. With the band on the brink of a breakthrough, Ben is forced to find a way to balance the opportunity of a lifetime with caring for his beautiful boyfriend.
Stories that go beyond the “norm” to touch on subjects that may be considered strange or outside the box can go one of two ways. They can either be so off-center and non-relatable that reading them turns into a WTF moment, or they can be so thought-provoking and simply fantastic that they become an instant favorite. The Impossible Boy is the latter, and I was truly moved by the beautiful relationship that develops between Stan and Ben.
Stan is what many people may see as a conundrum—physically male, but able to easily move between male and female in looks and mentality-essentially someone in-between genders. He identifies as gender fluid, and does not hide his true self from anyone. I found his character to be an inspiration, and thought his mature, contemplative attitude toward his self-identity was incredibly insightful, particularly when he’s explaining to his friend Tone who he is when Tone asks if he’s a boy or a girl.
Ben is just…amazing. He is the perfect example of someone loving a person for WHO they are, not what physical gender they are, just following his heart. He is exactly who we need to see in today’s world, and he’s is the ultimate partner for Stan. The two of them together for me was the definition of love, and the support Ben shows for Stan throughout the story had me falling for Ben as well.
The supporting characters are just as strong and well developed as both Ben and Stan, and I have to say that Tone was my favorite of that bunch. He is the best friend everyone would want, and the support he also gives Stan without treating him like a child is touching even with his rough-like character. This story would not have been the same without Tone, and I thought that Ben and Stan were lucky to have him.
Touching on the controversial subject of gender identity as well as the difficult topic of anorexia, The Impossible Boy is a moving story of unconditional love and support that I absolutely adored, and is worth all 5 stars I gave it…along with a spot on my Top Recommendations list. It is a story that I do highly recommend for any M/M romance fan, just be advised it is for readers 18+ for adult language, M/M sexual content (which was wonderfully and tastefully done), and mature subject matter. This book will make you think, and may open your eyes to so much more than what you’d find in your average love story…because The Impossible Boy is anything but average, and I for one think it’s exceptional.
Apart from being physically dependent on her laptop, Anna is enthusiastic about writing and producing local grassroots theatre (especially at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, where she can be found every summer), visiting friends who live in other countries, Marvel Comics, learning new things, and Ben & Jerry's New York Super Fudge Chunk.
Although her most recent work is in the LGBT Adult Fiction genre, in the past Anna has worked on a variety of different projects including short stories, drabbles, flash fiction, fan fiction, plays for both children and adults, and poetry. She has written novels in the Teen/ Young Adult genre, Romance, and Fantasy novels.
Anna is, by her own admission, almost unhealthily obsessed with books. The library she has amassed is both large and diverse; "My favourite books," she says, "are The Moonstone by Wilkie Collins, To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee and Oryx and Crake by Margaret Atwood." She also several well-read copies of Michael Crichton's Jurassic Park books and re-reads the Harry Potter novels with almost startling regularity.
Anna claims her entire career is due to the love, support, pre-reading and creative ass-kicking provided by her closest friend Jennifer. Jennifer refuses to accept any responsibility for anything Anna has written.
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