tasting ‘dissonance’: nichem’s choice

Dissonance by Sonja Spencer

The Blurb:

dis•so•nance [dis-uh-nuhns]—noun. 1. inharmonious or harsh sound; discord; cacophony. 2. Music: a. a simultaneous combination of tones conventionally accepted as being in a state of unrest and needing completion. b. an unresolved, discordant chord or interval.

Matthias McGaughey checks into his new dormitory, dreading the new year, new people, and new dangers. The past year was a nightmare, and now he lives in a constant state of unrest, unable to find balance or trust anyone. The building director, Kent Thomas, can feel the vibes pouring off Matthias; they’re discordant enough that even he can tell the musician is very troubled. Appointing himself Matthias’s protector, Kent tries his best to draw Matthias out of his shell. Despite his initial resistance, Matthias finds himself warming to his new friend. Little does he know that Kent, already in love, will help him weave harmony between the past, the present, and their future.

Why I bought it:

I love the word dissonance. The way it sounds is so different to it’s meaning. I just kept coming back to the word.

Dislike/like (ending on a high note):

Dislike~ I enjoyed Dissonance; however, my biggest problem with it was its length (97 pages). This had nothing to do with how the plot was paced or how well the characters were developed, but everything to do with the fact that I felt the protags, the themes and the storyline had so much potential it was almost a disservice to them it was such a short length. I wanted more back story about Matthias and Kent, more scenes which showed the growing trust and relationship between the two men… just more.

Like~ This is one of the few books I’ve read in this genre to date which I think made a good attempt at conveying what a male victim of abuse goes through. As I indicated above, I would have really liked further exploration of Matthias’ growing trust towards the sensitive and caring Kent, but overall the sense of this did come through in the story.

Dislike~ more, More, MORE. It’s the length thing. I can’t get away from my reaction – sorry! I also realise I may be putting some of you off from getting it. I guess the bottom line for me was I liked the story in this short format, but I think I would have LOVED it as a longer novel.

Like~ At heart, this is a story about trust and love and features two characters with whom I found it very easy to empathise. There may be some who feel it was a little too sugary for their taste, but I enjoyed it for the sweet story it was.

So, what I think:

This is for those who, like me, appreciate a well written, uplifting love story involving two charming characters.


‘Tasting’ is my version of a mini-review where I talk a (very) little about what I liked and disliked about a book as well as who I think the story will appeal to. Oh, and I’ve added a bit about why I picked up the book in the first place – sometimes this can be interesting to know.

About Kris

Reads, rants, randoms & R+s. You've been warned. BTW, don't follow me if you're a GLBTQQphobic wanker. It won't end well. For you.
This entry was posted in contemporary, m/m, sonja spencer, tasting. Bookmark the permalink.

10 Responses to tasting ‘dissonance’: nichem’s choice

  1. nichem says:

    Thanks for the “tasting”, Kris. Too bad about the length issue. Overall, I tend to prefer novels over novellas because I like really getting to know the characters in depth.Sounds like you enjoyed it otherwise, though, so I’ll keep it in mind for when I’m looking for a quick read.

  2. Kris says:

    No probs. I did enjoy it, but would have loved it to have been longer and even more developed. *sigh* I’m such a demanding reader. 😉

  3. orannia says:

    Thank you Kris! Hmmm…sounds like you liked the author’s plot and characterization, the novella just needed to be longer, yes? So an author to watch out for?

  4. Kris says:

    That’s it in nutshell, Orannia, and definitely an author to watch out for. She was new-to-me as well, which made the discovery even better. 🙂

  5. Jenre says:

    I’ve read this and am going to review it for wave. I pretty much thought exactly the same as you – great book, lovely characters, sensitive handling of the abuse plot, but should have been longer.

  6. Tam says:

    Mmmm. That sounds yummy. Sugar is good. I will check that out.

  7. Kris says:

    The psychic network continues to work, Jen! *Phew* I’m glad you felt the same on this one. By the end of this tasting, I felt like I was being a right proper bitch, but I just couldn’t get away from the fact that everything else worked about it except for the length.

  8. Kris says:

    Hi TamIt wasn’t overly sugary, but was a really very lovely story.

  9. Tracy says:

    I love novella’s but do find that the length hinders the story from time to time. As you said – it doesn’t make them weaker, you just need MORE!Great tasting.

  10. Kris says:

    Eggsunkley, Tracy. The novella was definitely good, but longer and morer would have been GREAT!

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