Dreamspinner Press, November 16, 2011 | 192 pages
Author’s website | Goodreads | Buy book here
Jesse Swanson’s life is pretty normal: He has a job he doesn’t mind, his parents are pretty decent, and he’s got a boyfriend. So what if he still lives at home? So what if he thinks he argues a little too often with his guy?
Everything changes when he stops to pick up a bird and ends up picking up a new guy instead. Chris, formerly known as Sings-like-water, is fascinated by Jesse’s music and by Jesse himself, but figuring out how to be human isn’t easy—especially when Jesse’s now ex-boyfriend decides he’ll do anything to get Jesse back. Can Jesse and Chris overcome the odds, or will their fledgling romance falter before it can fly?
Genre & Keywords:
M/M Romance, Paranormal, Bird-Shifters, Stalkers, Birds, First Times, Friendship
Heat level: 1.5 out of 3
Reviewed by Lis:
Every once in a while you come across a book that makes you go “huh?” and you don't quite know what to make of it. On the one hand it's good and you enjoyed reading it and on the other hand it just didn't quite fit.
First Flight by Connor Wright is such a book. I'm firmly fence sitting on this one.
So what is First Flight about you ask? Well it's the story of Jesse and Chris. Jesse still lives at home, but has a job and a boyfriend. Then one day he comes across a downed bird and he's drawn to it. So he picks up the bird and puts it in the back of his car. Next thing he knows there is a beautiful, naked, shivering boy in the back. It turns out that Chris is a bird shifter. Not a human who shifts into a bird but a bird who shifts into a human. The story focuses both on Chris's adjustment to the human world, the slowly developing romance between Jesse and Chris and a crazy ex.
What worked for me then?Chris. Chris is the main focus of this story. His adjustment to the human world is funny, endearing, crazy and sweet. I loved his birdlike mannerisms. Chris is a very sweet, strong, caring and understandably naïve, character. He is very lovable and I loved how he sees the world and discovers who he really is. How to become human and how he became a shifter. His obsession with eggs and his courting of Jesse is so much fun to read. It's the biggest part of this story that I liked.
His journey through the human world is amazing and very well written. Of the two characters, Chris is the most fleshed out. There is more focus on him and as a result, this is more his story than it is Jesse's or Chris and Jesse's.
I thought the author was very observant in how a bird shifter should act and the little details are well done.
Now for what didn't quite work for me.Jesse. His is a flat character and even a slightly boring one. It could be because this author did not pay much attention to him or that he more fit the story than be an actual part of it, but Jesse didn't work for me. It wasn't even that he still lived at home; you never quite get the age of the characters. He's young, but no longer school going. He seems to have no real ambitions in live.
Furthermore his relationship with his ex, Kevin, is just downright annoying. It takes a long time for Jesse to notice Kevin's stalkerish tendencies or the dangerous quality of them. It's only when his parents intervene that he realizes just how dangerous Kevin is and by then it's almost too late. Duh...obvious... It made me wonder just how smart Jesse is.
Especially because it takes Jesse a long time to ask just how Chris came to be in the back of his car. Even longer to come to the conclusion that Chris is the bird he picked up. It irked me that he never asked any questions. Maybe it's just a quality of his to accept everything for what it is.
This book reads more like a Young Adult book than an adult book. Except, of course, for the graphic content of the sex scenes. It's almost as if the author couldn't decide who to write for or didn't quite know what setting to put his characters in.
So, overall conclusionI can't really give you one. I can't really recommend this book but at the same time I can, because you might find it a lot better than I did. I think First Flight is an acquired taste. I know it received mix-reviews, so I'm probably not the only one who doesn't know what to make of this book!