In her story, E.N. Holland has 2 thirty something men, brown-eyed/blond-hair Allen and blue-eyed/dark-hair Jim, meeting in an isolated place for a recurrent “meeting”: they are buddy-lover since when they spent two summers alone in a canyon as ranch hands. They both met for the first time outside the office of the foreman and Jim immediately fell for Allen; Allen was a little slower, but in the end he met Jim’s feelings. Despite their relationship, both Allen than Jim married, Allen had 2 daughter, Jim a son. Jim married into money, he is working for his wife’s father, and his wife is a former horsewoman, they met while Jim was into the rodeo circuit. Allen’s relationship with his wife is no good, and Allen’s wife had some suspicious on Allen’s relationship with Jim, since she spied them together soon after their marriage, when Jim came into town to see Allen. While Jim had other homosexual relationships, Allen’s male lover is only Jim, and he has some “issue” to come to the idea that they are gay. Jim’s family lives in an old ranch, and Jim has some issue to relate with his father. So, ring a bell till now? But we all know what happened in Brokeback Mountain, Ennis’s incapacity to acknowledge their relationship pushed Jack to be careless, and he got killed; Ennis spent the rest of his life regretting his lost chance at happiness with Jack.
And here E.N. Holland plays her what if game: what if instead of refusing to give them a try, Ennis accepted to share a life with Jack? That is what Allen does and that is the beginning of this novel. Allen accepts to being in love with Jim and the obvious consequence is to start a life together. They go and speak with Jim’s wife to obtain a divorce (Allen is already divorced) and they find a temporary job to spend the summer and think on how they will manage to be together forever. A serious of lucky coincidences have the both of them in a good position to start and all in all, aside from one or two bad confrontations with strangers, and a still tense relationship with Allen’s ex-wife, they are good to go. Maybe a little complain is that the “coincidences” were a little too much and too good; trying not to spoil the story, but what will happen with Hal I think it’s almost impossible in real-life: for how much good a man Tom is, I don’t think he can possible accept without any complaint Hal’s decision, or at least not in total; maybe a fifty/fifty is a more likely chance.
The author wanted a full pink glasses perspective, she wanted romance and she wanted for it to be without limit; no drama for Allen and Jim, some emotions yes and maybe a tears or two. And in the end, the reader remains with this question: what if the original story was like this one? Would you have liked it better? From my point of view I can only said that I’m always for an happily ever after.
Amazon Kindle: I'm Saying Yes
Publisher: Bristlecone Pine Press (May 6, 2011)
Reading List: http://www.librarything.com/catalog_bott