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First Impressions

First Impressions

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First Impressions

3.5/5 (5 Bewertungen)
30 Seiten
26 Minuten
Jun 1, 2011


After an accidental brush with fame while working a high-profile serial murder case, forensic anthropologist Dr. David Holt is sent on a lecture junket to pass the time until media interest in his work dies down. More tired and grouchy than a true misanthrope, his patience is stretched to the breaking point by the end of the circuit. Then David meets Matthew Carter, who stumbles into his lecture both late and disheveled.  However, the young man’s determination to befriend his idol and his enthusiasm for the subject reminds David that sometimes life sends good things your way when you least expect them.

Jun 1, 2011

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First Impressions - Dawn Douglas

First Impressions

MATTHEW CARTER walked into my life six months after I accidentally became a household name.

I’D BEEN stupid enough to let a film student from the University of Texas follow me around for a semester, waving a camera in my face, as a favor to a friend of mine. A forensic anthropologist, I specialize in the identification of humans when their remains are found in advanced stages of decomposition. Usually, it’s a lengthy, laborious process that involves hours of research and absolutely no glamour. The twenty-minute documentary the young idiot produced should have been one of the most boring pieces of film ever created. And it would have been, if two weeks before he finished filming, I hadn’t been called in to consult on the Klienschmidt case.

Henry Klienschmidt was a reclusive, eccentric millionaire who died alone in his sprawling Southern Indiana farmhouse perched on a hill in the middle of two hundred acres of overgrown woodland and fallow cornfields. Passing without either heirs or a will, Klienschmidt’s estate was so tied up in red tape that his crimes probably would have gone unnoticed forever if, during the due diligence on his assets, an ambitious tax assessor hadn’t decided he needed to walk every acre of the woods to make sure Klienschmidt hadn’t hidden anything of value in them. The assessor, who was as clumsy as he was obsessive, tripped half a mile from the farmhouse. When he got himself back on his feet, the first thing he noticed was that he’d fallen into a poison ivy patch. The second was that he’d tripped over a bone. A very big bone.

Four hours and a little bit of excavation later, the Indiana State Police had plane tickets waiting for me. Using his daddy’s credit card, the idiot booked the seat beside mine. I got there just in time to agree with the coroner that the big bone was actually a human femur, and to identify inconsistencies

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5 Bewertungen / 2 Rezensionen
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  • (3/5)
    This short story is exactly what it says on the cover: a first impression of a potential relationship. I liked the determined approach Matthew took despite the fact he was scared and uncertain. David, or Dr. Holt as he is called throughout most of the book, is a bit of a harder guy to like. His withdrawn, socially somewhat inept manner comes through beautifully, though.

    If you like reading about a very hot first time between an older and a much younger man, and enjoy the hints at a possible relationship to follow, you will probably like this story.
  • (5/5)
    First up, this is gay fiction not m/m romance although a romance is at the heart of the book.

    "First Impressions" is one of the best books I've read this year. There is so much going for it, if you drop your prejudices, look beneath the surface and think about what the author is saying.

    It makes a number of statements on a number of levels clothed in witty, irreverent and scathing dialogue as befits a gay writer doing exactly what Jane Austen did many years ago.

    It's fun picking the parallels with specific characters. They are there in essence, but at times the lines blur. For example, Simon is sometimes said to be the Wickham character, but really he reminds me more of Elizabeth's friend Charlotte and her marriage of convenience to Mr Collins aka Henry's Uncle Brenton. The master stroke was making his alter ego, the drag queen as a beautiful rendition of Lady Catherine.

    Just as in the original, the secondary characters are seen through the eyes of the long suffering quieter pair, Elizabeth and Darcy, or in this case Cameron and Henry. Their friends' frivolities and flaws stand out in marked contrast to the latter's more conservative behavior.

    True, the antics can be at times over-the-top, because deep down the POV character, Cameron, makes no bones about the fact he's gay and allows the stereotypical acerbic gay wit to sneak through.

    Some of the scenes in the book are priceless. Take for example the early scene in the diner where the four men have gathered on Cameron's birthday. Their sniping dialogue is very well done.

    Reading this requires you to look underneath words and concentrate more on what characters do. Those with good hearts may on the surface appear bratty, selfish and out of control but that is often a front donned to protect themselves from the judgemental pricks of (and in) society.

    There's also a very serious, thought-provoking discussion on what makes the perfect partner. Present are Cameron's mentors, Brent and Aspen (aka Mr and Mrs Gardiner) and Darren (aka Mr Bingham) The criteria of choosing the Ideal Husband hold true for anyone of any gender, and the answer may surprise some people. I have no doubt that the arguments presented here reflect the author's own beliefs, judging by his record of nearly twenty years of happy marriage.

    All I'd like to know is if Darren ends up with Thad or Van (or both maybe) that would be a perfect match.

    So, if you've been put off reading the book because of negative reviews, do yourself a favor and read it without prejudice because I think the author should be proud of what he's written.

    Mind you, you don't have to have read Pride and Prejudice to enjoy the story, and I'd forgotten hearing about the link until half way through. This link explains some plot roughness as characters are used to mirror the original. But overall, it is a comedy of manners of our time, a sarcastic take on the society it's set in and a collection of some really memorable characters.