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"It is what you read when you don't have to that determines what you will be when you can't help it." - Oscar Wilde

Moment Of Clarity by Karen Stivali

Moment Of Clarity - Karen Stivali
Good lord, the angst. The ANGST! And so much of it is unnecessary as hell. 
The third book in the Moments In Time series finally brings a HEA for Collin and Tanner - or at least a strong HFN. However, the way to get there was... hard. In many ways. And not all of them pleasant. 
Back at college, Collin and Tanner are not only faced with a homophobia and angst to the max, but they also need to find a place to live since their dorm was flooded. After reconnecting with his brother Sean, Collin can stay with him and his daughters in his house. Even Tanner is allowed to come, and they both enjoy the (somewhat) quiet, the relative privacy and the babysitting inbetween. Until the bitch-y and absent mother of the girls, Laura, shows up in all her homophobic and hysterical glory. 
After that nice little meeting, the boys are back on the streets looking for a place to stay. Because Laura is suing Sean for custody and the boys don't want to "damage" Sean's image or destroy his chances of keeping the kids. Which is... yeah, no. What?! That woman abandoned her kids, hasn't been around for weeks and NOW she wants sole custody? Also, in what world would a big brother throw his little brother plus boyfriend out on the streets when he is starting to fight for custody? It was a temporary solution anyway to let the boys stay until they could back to their dorm, and while I am well aware of how fucked up custody cases can get, and how homophobic judges can be, in my opinion there was absolutely NO REASON to throw the boys out immediately and without looking for another place for them to sleep first. It didn't make any sense, and it pissed me off.
So then, in all their desperation, Collin and Tanner try to reconnect somewhat with Wendy (Tanner's former fuck buddy) and maybe stay with her and her roommates. And let me tell you, I couldn't care less about this woman. She's manipulative, she's mean, and one big self-centred bitch most of the time. Even when she was fucking up her friendships for all the wrong reasons, even when her douchebag of a cheating boyfriend finally went a step too far, I couldn't muster up a lot of sympathy for her. And I was even less impressed with how she handled all the drama. I just disliked her way too much. 
The big drama also was too much for me. First you get the homophobic assholes who didn't even get expelled or suspended for criminal property damage - in a freaking college dorm! Then Collin, the martyr, completely looses his shit and is looking in the most unlikely place for help/a place to hide. Which was not only an overused and old plot device, but also didn't make a lick of sense. 
But... I still couldn't stop reading. And I still can't just give the book one or two stars. Because for one, I really enjoyed Karen Stivalis writing style. It was engaging and smooth, and I actually enjoyed the writing as such. And while they aren't flawless, I liked the two MCs and their on-page time together. Tanner and Collin are sweet, sexy, sometimes too cute, sometimes a little heartbreaking, but always likeable as characters. I liked to read about their relationship and I enjoyed the parts of their journey that actually was between the two and the two alone. 
I could have done with a better ending, though. While it wasn't a complete HEA, in other parts it was just too much. Too much of in an "everything is absolutely fine for EVERYONE"-way. I really didn't buy it. And while I know that there is a new book out in the series, I'm not sure I'm going to pick it up. I think I'm just finished with this series for now, no matter who's staring in the next book.