Status Update by Annabeth Albert
Series: Gaymers, #1
Publication Date: December 7th, 2015
Format: E-ARC via Net Galley & Carina Press
Adult Fiction | M/M Romance
Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
Adrian Gottlieb is winning at life. He’s a successful video game designer with everything a man could ask for, including a warm comfy ride to Denver and a date for his sister’s wedding. But he finds himself in need of a total reboot when he’s left stranded at a snowy campground in Utah. Holiday plans? Epic fail.
That is until Noah Walters offers him shelter for the night and a reluctant cross-country ride. Nothing about the ultraconservative geoarchaeologist should attract Adrian, but once he discovers Noah’s hidden love for video games, the two connect on a new level. Soon, a quiet but undeniable chemistry sparks.
Something doesn’t add up, though. As the miles accumulate and time runs out, Noah must face the most difficult choice of his life. Meanwhile, Adrian must decide whether he’s ready to level up. Is their relationship status worth fighting for, or has this game ended before it’s even begun?
I’m not a pro at M/M romances so when I find something really good, I will check out the author’s other work – which is exactly what I did after reading Status Update. This is the story of Noah and Adrian. Two people who couldn’t be more different who met at a time when they least expected it. One is raised as a conservative Christian, and the other, an out-and-proud hipster.
Noah is a professor at a staunch Christian university whose foundation of belief is based on homosexuality being a condition that is curable by prayers and repentance. He met Adrian at a point in his life when he’s resolved to live a lonely life because he believes that his career is all that will ever be for him. He’s satisfied living in the closet because he feared reproach and ridicule from his family and colleagues.
Adrian, on the other hand, lives in a progressive environment where no one really cared about anyone’s sexual orientation. But even with the liberties he’s afforded, his relationships are usually cultivated on-line and typically, long distance. Some soul-searching will lead him to conclude that it’s because he’s satisfied with the status quo. In any case, these two would meet and would then form a tentative relationship. But regardless of their connection, their lives are just too different. Noah needs to think about his career and what was more important. Adrian, on the other hand, is a successful game developer in Los Angeles who is ready to be in a serious relationship.
I always expect some angst when I read a romance novel where one is a closeted gay man. And there was some here. What I liked about it is that the author didn’t prolong the agony, you know? Noah stepped up to the plate and decided what he needed to do to make it less hurtful for either of them. Adrian also recognized that he can’t force the issue and that the relationship needs to happen only when they are both ready to deal with it. I like their chemistry. I like Noah’s shyness and reluctance. He’s a virgin, but his attraction to Adrian was undeniable.
Annabeth Albert apparently is a pro at these romances, so I’m really glad I found this book on NG. This was a fantastic introduction to her work! She crafted a coming out story that was both steamy and romantic, with no overreaching story arches that over complicate a simple story line.