JD Chambers has written a beautiful book that I think is one of the best ones I’ve ever read. I hope that when I am done, you think so too.
Only See You is the second book in JD’s Only Colorado series. One of the main characters in this book is Mal. Mal is one of my favorite characters ever. I’d want them to be my book partner, but I don’t have the plumbing that they are interested in. So, maybe my book friend. Mal is a non-binary character. That means that they don’t identify as either male or female. He/she pronouns would be misgendering to them, the appropriate pronouns are they/them. Gender is what’s in your head and isn’t an either/or choice. There is a whole fluidity and spectrum when it comes to gender. It’s a whole tangled mess, and I’m definitely not going to be untangling it here. Suffice it to say that Mal knows who they are, what they want, and is happy that way.
We first met Mal in the first book. They are a friend of Craig. When Craig asks them to help he and Zach move, Mal agrees because they are hoping to see Zach’s hot roommate. But, roommate hottie wasn’t there. Mal figures it was a wasted trip, right until they see Parker, Zach’s hot cousin.
Parker has been staying Zach while he gets his life back under control. He is in the process of divorcing his bitch of a wife, whom he had finally had enough of. She was always an evil nasty person, but Parker just kind of went along with it. He didn’t agree with what she was saying, but he didn’t stop her from saying it. That is, right until she accused Zach and Craig of causing her miscarriage, after using Zach quite terribly.
Parker can’t get Mal out of his head. Parker knows he’s straight, he was married to a woman after all. But that doesn’t mean that he’s not attracted to Mal. They seem to have taken up permanent residence in his head. When Mal goes out on a date with Ben, roommate hottie, it doesn’t work out well. But Parker is there when they get back, and Mal and Parker get real up close and personal, which is when Parker really starts wondering about himself. Maybe he’s not as straight as he thinks he is. But what does that mean about who he is and his entire identity?
This book. Wow. It’s all about discovery and exploration. It’s about finding out your truth and living it. Parker learns that what his truth is at 8 doesn’t mean it’s the same at 18 or 28. Who you are changes over your lifetime as you mature and as you experience life. You aren’t an immovable and unchangeable stone. What’s important is that you figure out who you are, no matter how long it takes, and that you live your truth, no matter what it is. I also think that it’s great that we are seeing more queer representation in romance and that it’s becoming more mainstream. Representation is always important. Everyone wants to read books or watch movies that have someone like them in it. I applaud JD for the choice of Mal and for how well Mal is handled in the book. One of the things I like best is that Parker asks Mal if it’s OK to ask them questions for a better understanding, and then shows that he had done some research into the matter. Good on Parker.
OK, here’s my picture of what Mal looks like in my head, minus the facial hair. This person is just beautiful though. I love their eyes.
I’m glad that the nasty ex gets hers, because damn. If I could’ve walked into that book and smacked the holy hell out of her, I so totally would’ve.
Mal is so good to Parker’s mom when they and Parker go visit. They really help Parker to come to grips with a difficult situation and one that could be heart-breaking too. They also helped Parker make up his mind about all his decisions. I think that the pair of them are perfect together and I hope that they are together forever.
I can’t wait for the next one to come out.