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The Door Behind Us - John C. Houser

Even though it's not my favorite time frame I seem to be reading more and more historical M/M books. Despite my prejudice against them the ones that I've read have never disappointed me. I think I need to have a look at others I've dismissed because of the "historical" tag because I think I'm passing on what could be quite a few good reads.

It's 1919 and Frank Huddleston has a problem, he was injured in the war overseas and now doesn't remember who he is or recognize his family and friends. His grandparents hire a keeper for him to coach him daily on his identity and his chores on their farm. The keeper is one Jersey Rohn, a war veteran himself, who lost a leg and suffers from shell shock. The men form a tight bond as they share experiences when Frank's memory begins to return. 

This becomes a road trip story as Jersey and Frank hit the road to find answers for Frank concerning his family and his memories and Jersey looks to get an artificial leg at one of the big city hospitals.

A bit part of the attraction of this story for me was the flow of dialogue. It felt authentically of the time period and was so charming and original to my ear. I loved the characters here both the MC's and the secondary ones as well, they all had very pronounced personalities. It was interesting to read about how Frank and Jersey pined for each other but didn't want to step over the line. How they come to reveal the attraction to each other was subtle and really fun to read. 

The story and characters aren't without its frustrations. For me, this centers mostly around Frank whose default to stress seems to be to bolt. Frank spends most of the story on the run, to find answers and to then to run for more answers or run from heavy truths revealed. That got a bit tiring but I did like how he got his act together. Also, despite the long distances traveled the timing of some meetings seemed a bit too coincidental but that was a minor quibble in a strongly emotional read.

There was also an unexpected epilogue weaved through the main story that ended with a very original and satisfying HEA. While I could fill in the blanks over time I will say that I could easily read more about these characters and how they came to build their life together.