Sunday, February 9, 2014

Junk by Josephine Myles


The Bristol Collection - Book 1

The main reason I wanted to read this book? One of the main characters is a hoarder. Yes, a true blue, needs help, hoarder. He hoards books, magazines and newspapers. I was extremely curious as to how the author was going to turn this guy into a sympathetic - as opposed to pitiful - character and indeed, make him romantic at the same time.

Well, she did it. Josephine made Jasper not only sympathetic and romantic... she made him lovable and adorable and hot and sexy. How? We got to see him through the eyes of Lewis, his clutter therapist. Sure it's a little out there, sure, Jasper's problems (and he does have problems and issues) seem to get solved nice and neat by book's end, but you know what? It's a romance. I can use a little stardust and HAE in my romances, you know?

That being said, getting inside Jasper's mind, seeing how the hoarding tendancies worked, his justifications and his fears. It all made wonderful sense to me. And Lewis with his own issues - shopaholic. *LOL* - he makes a few mistakes in dealing with Jasper's problems but you know... it's got to happen!

I really, really like this author's voice. It's happy-go-lucky, good-natured, fun and honest. It enjoys being romantic. And her dialogue! Oh, I love the bits of snark and silliness that creep in to the dialogue between the characters. That's how people talk in real life! And it brings a smile to this reader's face.

And the secondary characters. Lewis' family, his twin Carroll and their crazy parents. Jasper's friend with benefits, Mas and his good friend Yusef. They're all drawn with details that make them come alive, that make them more than mere plot devices.

In the end, I felt that Ms Myles treated the subject of hoarding with respect and authenticity within the bounds of the romantic story she wanted to tell. Junk is not a tragedy nor a treatise on mental health - it's a romance with stumbling blocks and within that framework, it works really, really well.

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