American Love Songs has a very nice touch of realism that lets you see the life behind pop superstars and the likes before they became public’s property. The story was told through Jake Brenner’s perspective. He’s an openly gay member of the aspiring rock band Wayward Sons hoping to make it big. Young and “has too many wild oats to sow to fall in love” – Jake’s world suddenly turned into oblivion when the band signed their new lead guitarist Parker McAvoy. Dorky, talented and mysterious Parker knows all about Jake’s conquest and he’s not gay as everyone presumed – until Jake discovered all the layers of Parker’s past. What would it take for Parker to overlook Jake’s philandering past and give him a chance in love?
I loved the first half of this novel. I thought Jake’s character was very realistic and very charming. I loved that it’s also relevant and there’s vibrancy with each character – his band members, his family and the rest of the secondary characters. Parker on the other hand was equally adorable but I didn’t get the drift of his past. It was almost predictable at first but for some reasons, it feels like the author decided to go heavy on the religious undertone to his character. I didn’t get that at all. There was no consistency in his character.
The pacing of the latter part also became excruciatingly slow I almost find myself skimming the pages especially with their rather brow-raising sexual arrangement. Perhaps, it was in the characterization of Parker’s character that doesn’t sit well with me very much. I wished it was just the gay thing and not an elaborate story about choosing a boy over his family. The former reason would’ve been sufficient for the plot and it would still blend in beautifully with the development of the story. It’s a good story – not as grand as the Conquest series by SJ Frost but it’s alright. And the title – it’s a beautiful one but totally wasted.
Rating: 3 out of 5 stars