Hot damn y’all (see what I did there, sometimes I’m punny), have I got a book for you.
I’d like to start off by saying that I’m pumped to have had the opportunity to both read and review my Twitter friend Sahreth Bowden’s (@Baphy1428) book. I’ve read a couple paranormal romances, but I’ve never read any LGBTQ romance, so To Hell and Back for You was a first for me.
(Ooh, and here’s the link to my vlog!)
So, this story primarily follows Mark, an ex-junkie who’s depressed and feels really guilty about losing his last love. I think we’ve all been there–pining after a bad breakup–but his is more than bad, because, you know, his former flame Tyler died and Mark blames himself for it. That’s because on top of having a (possibly) toxic relationship in terms of drugs, Mark’s really intrigued by the ideas of astral projection, lucid dreaming, etc.; the drugs seem to aid in these psychic abilities and in a failed attempt, Tyler ODed and died.
Fast forward some time later, Mark’s clean, depressed, and watching a true crime show. (I mean, who doesn’t want to spend their weekend doing this–although I usually go down wiki-holes rather than Dateline…anywho) The next week, the program will be doing a special on occultist murder Lloyd McGraff…and Mark. is. intrigued! So much so, that he takes a road trip to the killer’s town (it’s pretty close to him) and that road trip turns into a journey he couldn’t have even imagined.
He meets vengeful teen-ghosts. He meets McGraff’s daughter and is sort of friends/fenemies with her. He ends up back in the psych ward. He meets a cute new dude (who is so much healthier than Tyler seemed to be, I’m just gonna say it… I don’t know Tyler, but together, he and Mark seemed to be a hot mess). He gets better at his psychic abilities. He fights McGraff and died. (that was tough to read)…there’s so much more I don’t want to spoil it.
Ooh, but one more thing–the ending is a doozy. I’m always intrigued by alternate endings, and this one was well done in that it was 100% one of those very similar except the character turned right instead of left, so what happened, sort of situations; and I really enjoyed that.
Overall, it was a really entertaining read. I felt like I kept clicking the right arrow constantly what with clicking through the online book so quickly! Bowden is a descriptive author, which I love, so all the scenes were quite vivid. Which, if you’re not into fight scenes or sex, might be a little iffy for you at times. It’s not like either types of scenes are particularly graphic, but if you’re prudish in regard to either violence or sex, you might be a little uncomfortable.
You might also be a bit uncomfortable if you’re very anti-demon. But look, this isn’t a story like Chilling Adventures of Sabrina, where characters are cruising around saying “Hail Satan.” It’s just that along with ghosts and evil-necromancer-occultist-murderers, some spooky stuff is just going to be part of the genre. That said, I actually found the demons quite amusing, I wanted to get to know Spike a little more, he seemed pretty cool. Which is actually another thing, I feel like the demons were actually…not relatable, but not scary (definitely not evil like Shazam’s seven deadly sin demons). Spike and even another demon character (you just gotta read it, I don’t want to give up too much) were actually pretty likable.
So, overall, I would recommend this book–definitely if you like paranormal romance and LGBTQ romance, but also if you’re curious about either genre. As I said, if you’re a little on the more traditional side, the sex, demons, fighting, abuse, and cursing (there are a few c-words… I can deal with the f-bombs, but the c-words did make me grimace a bit), you should either approach this book with an open mind, or maybe avoid it.
That’s all I’ve got for this week! Next week I’m excited to share my thoughts on another Twitter friend DT Moorhouse (@DTMoorhouse1)’s book Purple Shadows.