Columnist Drew Walsh made his career by publicly criticizing conservative, anti-gay politician Richard Granger. So when a rumor surfaces that Granger’s son Jonathan might be gay, Drew finds himself in the middle of a potential scandal. Under the guise of an interview about Jonathan’s new job teaching in an inner-city school, Drew’s job is to find out if the rumors are true. Drew’s best friend Rey is also Jonathan’s cousin, and he arranges the meeting between Jonathan and Drew that changes everything.
After just one interview, it’s obvious to Drew that the rumors are true, but he carefully neglects to mention that in his article. It’s also obvious that he’s falling for Jonathan, and he can’t stay away after the article is published. Still, Jonathan is too afraid to step out of the closet, and Drew thinks the smartest thing might be to let him go-until Jonathan shows up drunk one night at his apartment. The slow burn of their attraction doesn’t fade with Jonathan’s buzz, but navigating a relationship is never easy-especially in the shadow of right-wing politics.
(I’m a bit behind on my book reviews, so this one will admittedly be a little short as it’s been a while since I finished this one.)
I found Blind Items to be an engaging read. The premise, at least to me, seems fairly original — a gay columnist (Drew) who’s made a name for himself bashing an anti-gay politician falls in love with that politician’s closeted son (Jonathan). Jonathan has his reasons for staying in the closet, only some of which seem to be the oppressive anti-gay stance of his father.
The set-up creates some interesting internal tension for Drew. He hates Jonathan’s father and would love to do anything to bring him down — and he knows outing Jonathan would destroy Jonathan’s father’s presidential ambitions. With one article, he could destroy his enemy’s platform… but he can’t bring himself to do so. Not only does the thought of outing someone like that seem to bother him, he’s more concerned about how doing so would destroy whatever relationship he has with Jonathan.
The struggles for Jonathan are believable and relatable. His journey through his struggles to the choices he makes at the end of the novel are realistic and true to the character. (I thought the ending was a tiny bit obvious leading up to it — as this genre’s endings often are — but it was a very enjoyable and fulfilling conclusion.
Kate McMurray brings a fun and enjoyable story to the reader in Blind Items. (And like I said at the start — it’s been a while since I read this book since I’m behind in my reviews. I don’t remember too much about the details of why I liked this book, I just remember that I thoroughly enjoyed it.)