Brooke, Anne. “Brady’s Choice”, Amber Allure, 2011.
Making the Choice
Brady Treherne joins the ranks of Anne Brooke’s characters and if you have read Anne in the past, you know she builds interesting characters. If you have not yet read any of Anne Brooke’s books, you are missing something. “Brady’s Choice” is a great place to start. Brady is 36 and a potter who, while at a job interview, meets his ex-lover, Philip. Brady loved Philip but he didn’t stay around and seeing him brings back some memories that he thought were in the past.
That same day, Philip visited Brady at home and Brady feels torn between his present partner (a relatively new relationship) and the man he once loved. Hence we have the title, “Brady’s Choice”.
Brooke is a writer that you do not easily forget nor do we often get a chance to read someone who can make us think like she can. She writes with an intensity that I find refreshing and while others write erotica and about sex, Brooke’s writing is sensual which to me is much more interesting. Let’s face it, anyone can write smut but only a few can turn on the reader with sensuality without explicit sex. To me it is kind of like seeing someone dressed in black from head to foot as opposed to someone naked. The guy in black is sensual; he exudes sex while showing nothing and keeps us guessing.
I think what really make me love this story is that it is very easy to take Brady’s place and try to decide what choice to make. I was never sure what Brady would do nor was I sure how I wanted him to choose. Granted the situation that Brady faced was unique, it was not impossible to consider myself in a similar circumstance. If we even think about what would happen if Brady took the job, we realize that he would have to see Philip daily and quite possibly work with him on projects.
Brady, upon seeing Philip, is forced to deal with the emotions that rush over him and when they are together after the interview, the chemistry between the two hits a high point. What we learn is that Philip is also involved with someone else but we quickly understand that their love for each other has never stopped. Sometimes it is just not easy to let a relationship go (as many of us know).
As I said earlier, Brooke builds characters that are deep and not easily forgotten and that is probably because we see a bit of us in the characters she creates. While Brady is clearly defined, Philip is somewhat enigmatic and I would have liked to know a bit more about him. But because Brady is the first that we meet, we tend to identify with him and I think that it wouldn’t matter if Philip were better defined or not as Brady wins us over. Also, we do not know what happened between Brady and Philip, we tend to guess that Philip was responsible for the breakup.
We face the questions of what might happen if they get back together and what about the men that are left behind? As Brady wavers between two men, so do we. The fact that he never really recovered after Philip hangs over the story and we see that the past is ever with him. He is tied by his emotions, his logic becomes illogical and his hopes are never clearly defined. This is a reflection of the art of the author in constructing this story.
I could not stop reading once I began and while the past is not fully explained, it adds to the mystery of the present and shows that dealing with a difficult situation is just that, very difficult. This is just another definition of how Anne Brooke makes us think and I love a writer who can do that.