The advantage of reading ‘Deuce’

Review of ‘Deuce’ by Jen Silver.

Jay Reid was a tennis star with a promising career, a loving partner, and their baby. When Charlotte disappeared while at a sea expedition, she left Jay alone to raise up their child. She was rescued by a fisherman and lived in the Faroe Islands with no recollection of her previous life. Twenty-three years later, an event triggers her memory and Charlotte goes back to England to reunite with Jay and their child. But after such a long time, will Charlotte and Jay be able to get back what they had?

‘Deuce’ is a love story but also a tale about bereavement, soul mates, family, and acceptance. It goes beyond the typical lesbian romance formula to focus not only on the main couple but also on the lives of the different people around them. It is loosely based on the selkie legends of Scotland and Faroe Islands, in which the seal people or ‘selkies’ shed their skins and come ashore to mix with humans to eventually return to the sea and leave them heartbroken. As in those legendary stories, this novel explores the unique bond between soul mates and the permanency of love.

This book is written in third person from multiple points of view except for Charlotte’s pov which is written in first person. In the beginning, the amount of characters perspectives can be confusing, but eventually, the reader discovers the value of each one of the stories. Ms. Silver deals with the issue of gender reassignment, transphobia and family acceptance, which are as important in the plot as the romance itself. Kudos to the author to raise those issues in a respectful and delicate way.

Even though the amnesia plot and the inability of people to grieve and let go after twenty years have the potential to become melodramatic quickly, I’m glad that Ms. Silver treated these issues realistically and took her time to rebuild the family’s bond. It made the wait so much worth it and pleasurable to read.

Overall, a very good tale about bereavement, soul mates, family, and acceptance. 4 stars.

ARC provided by the author in exchange for an honest review.

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