Book Review: Match Maker – Alan Chin

match-makerPublished September 6th 2010
Format: Novel
Genre: Romance / Sports / Contemporary
Length: 337 pages, ebook
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Cover Artist: Reese Dante
Ebook ISBN: 9781615815883
Characters: Daniel Bottega, Connor Lin, Jared Stoderling
Summary: In the four years since being forced off the professional tour for being gay, Daniel Bottega has taught tennis at a second-rate country club. He found a sanctuary to hide from an unkind world, while his lover, Jared Stoderling, fought a losing battle with alcohol addiction to cope with his disappointment of not playing on the pro circuit.

Now Daniel has another chance at the tour by coaching tennis prodigy Connor Lin to a Grand Slam championship win. He shares his chance with Jared by convincing him to return to the pro circuit as Connor’s doubles partner.

Competing on the world tour is challenging enough, but Daniel and Jared also face major media attention, political fallout from the pro association, and a shocking amount of hate that threatens Connor’s career in tennis, Jared’s love for Daniel, and Daniel’s very life.

I got Alan Chin’s Match Maker after reading a couple of sports-themed stories and I think I got more than what I’ve paid for it. Upon reading it June of this year, I immediately exclaimed over Goodreads that

Alan Chin’s Match Maker just became one of my favorite books ever! And I don’t even understand Tennis! What a profound, special, highly technical and just all kinds of brilliant!!!”

My exact words and they’re still true until now! Everything about it just clicked on my five-stars-o-meter.

This being under the mm / gay romance category, I’ve already made some preconceived ideas about it and really thought that Daniel and Connor would end up together so I was pleasantly surprised to discover from the first few chapters that Connor is actually straight with a guy best friend who’s actually in love with him.

Now, Daniel’s relationship with his best friend turned lover Jared was just the sweetest I’ve ever read. Even after everything they’ve been through, the hardship from the sports where they opted to come out as a couple and vying for acceptance from people around them – they remained together and I think that’s what I absolutely adore in this story regardless of the heavier issues discussed in it.

The side characters are just as vibrant as Daniel’s plight. The story of Connor’s grandpa and his resilience was very admirable and of course, the barrage of story arcs circling in and out of Tennis. (Shar, Spencer, Connor’s family…etc)

The story in general was heartfelt with genius dialogues, realistic scenarios and very human characters. What a well-rounded book this one is and I couldn’t ask for a better book to read as my first from Alan Chin.

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

Published September 6th 2010 by Dreamspinner Press (first published September 5th 2010

Buy now:
Amazon | Dreamspinner Press | Barnes & Noble

About The Author
Alan Chin was born in Ogden, Utah, where he was christened, Alan Lewis Hurlburt. He was raised in San Jose, California where he enjoyed an undistinguished childhood. After graduating high school, Alan served four years in the U.S. Navy where he learned and practiced the trade of aircraft mechanic while stationed at the naval air station in Kingsville, Texas.
Alan attended four years of night school at San Francisco State University, studying the field of Data Processing. Afterwards he enjoyed a twenty year career working his way from computer programmer, to software engineer, to network designer, and finally to manager of several software engineer development groups.

In 1991, while still working full time, Alan went back to night school and years later graduated from the University of San Francisco with a BS in Economics and a Masters in Creative Writing.

In 1999, Alan retired from his career in Information Technology to devote more time to his three hobbies: writing, traveling, and tennis. During that same timeframe, Alan legally changed his name to Alan Chin, so that he could share the same family name as his life partner, Herman Chin.

Alan turned serious about his writing in 2003, and began working on his first novel, Island Song. He has now published two novel with Zumaya Publications – Island Song and The Lonely War. He is currently searching for a publisher fr his 3rd novel, while writing a 4th novel and two screenplays.

Alan currently lives and writes half of each year at his home in San Rafael, California, and he spends the other half of each year traveling the globe.

You can learn more about Alan Chin and his writing at: http://AlanChinWriter.blogspot.com or about his travels at his travel blog: http://HermanAndAlan.blogspot.com
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