*I received a free copy of All the Better Part of Me from Central Avenue Publishing via Netgalley. This has in no way influenced my voluntary review, which is honest and unbiased *All the Better Part of Me by Molly Ringle
Published by Central Avenue Publishing on September 3, 2019
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, LGBT, Romance
It's an inconvenient time for Sinter Blackwell to realize he's bisexual. He's a 25-year-old American actor working in London, living far away from his disapproving parents in the Pacific Northwest, and enjoying a flirtation with his director Fiona. But he can't deny that his favorite parts of each day are the messages from his gay best friend Andy in Seattle—whom Sinter once kissed when they were 15. Finally he decides to return to America to visit Andy and discover what's between them, if anything. He isn't seeking love, and definitely doesn't want drama. But both love and drama seem determined to find him. Family complications soon force him into the most consequential decisions of his life, threatening all his most important relationships: with Andy, Fiona, his parents, and everyone else who's counting on him. Choosing the right role to play has never been harder.
All the Better Part of Me was a rather heartwarming read. Witnessing Sinter figure out his sexuality and deal with the repercussions was compelling even if I did get frustrated with him at times. He was, in all honesty, doing the best he could given the “tools” he had.
Sinter immediately captivated me. His love of 80’s music, Shakespeare, and emo-style of dressing felt familiar and comfortable. And his career as an actor made his flair for the dramatic realistic. I adored Sinter’s best friend, Andy. He was such a perfect fit for Sinter…understanding, supportive, all the things a best friend should be.
The supporting cast was pretty great as well. From Fiona and Sebastian to Daniel and Julie – even Sinter’s parents (who I wanted to throat punch often) – they all combined to add depth to the story.
When Andy, who is gay, finds himself single, Sinter has to begin examining the thoughts and feelings he’s having toward him. Sinter decides to move from London to Seattle, where Andy lives, they come up with an arrangement to enable Sinter to explore his sexuality. It was apparent to me, as the reader, that a meaningful romantic relationship was developing between them but it took longer for Sinter and Andy to figure it out.
- Character Growth
Sinter showed the most emotional growth and maturity over the course of the story. His upbringing in a very conservative family meant he’d naturally have issues coming to terms with his true self. His family was homophobic and didn’t like Sinter’s way of dressing or his profession making it fairly certain they wouldn’t be accepting were Sinter to embrace this facet of his sexuality. While I admit to being frustrated with his inability to come out, I also sympathized. The real growth came when Sinter found himself in a situation no one would want to be in if not prepared. The way he took on the responsibility, the way he handled things and eventually the way he came to embrace “all the best part” of himself was heartwarming.
Overall, I enjoyed All the Better Part of Me. The characters were engaging and the story was relevant. And MRingle’s extra gift was the 80’s song titles as chapter names. It really did set the mood. 😉 I intend to read Relatively Honest so I can get the back story on Daniel and Julie, Sinter’s London-based friends, soon.
Reading this book contributed to these challenges: