Review: Trust the Focus by Megan Erickson


Title: Trust the Focus (The Focus #1)
Author: Megan Erickson
Date of publication: 17 March 2015
Genre / Themes: Romance / New Adult / MM

Author's links: Website / Twitter / Facebook / Goodreads
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My rating: 3 Stars


With his college graduation gown expertly pitched into the trash, Justin Akron is ready for the road trip he planned with his best friend Landry— and ready for one last summer of escape from his mother’s controlling grip. Climbing into the Winnebago his father left him, they set out across America in search of the sites his father had captured through the lens of his Nikon.

As an aspiring photographer, Justin can think of no better way to honor his father’s memory than to scatter his ashes at the sites he held sacred. And there’s no one Justin would rather share the experience with more than Landry.

But Justin knows he can’t escape forever. Eventually he’ll have to return home and join his mother’s Senate campaign. Nor can he escape the truth of who he is, and the fact that he’s in love with his out-and-proud travel companion.

Admitting what he wants could hurt his mother’s conservative political career. But with every click of his shutter and every sprinkle of ash, Justin can’t resist Landry’s pull. And when the truth comes into focus, neither is prepared for the secrets the other is hiding.


This is my first book by Megan Erickson and it came highly recommended. It's a nice, bitter-sweet M/M coming-out romance but to be honest I expected more of it.

I liked the writing, the story flew effortlessly and I got deeply involved in the characters' fates. Both Justin and Landry were easy to relate and quite likable. I could picture them in their RV on their journey across the country. 

The story was centered on Justin grieving the loss of his father and at the same time becoming his own person - coming out in all the ways that matter - being open about what he wants to do with his life, who he loves. It was an emotionally intense story of discovery, of finding your place in life and getting there.

There was a lot of back and forth between Justin and Landry but I felt it fitted the story - both heroes were young, dealing with different issues, trying a relationship for the first time. They followed the general pattern every young person goes through in the process of becoming an adult - you trip and fall, but stand up again, you make mistakes but you learn from them, try to make amends and ultimately move forward as a better person (or at least you try to).

This said, there were minor weaknesses in the story which annoyed me. I felt the whole loss and grief element was treated somewhat superficially. Some elements of the romantic relationship didn't work well for me but it's more of a matter of personal preference than a real weakness of the story (Landry making Justin change his appearance to be more flashy, flamboyant really bothered me). 

My biggest disappointment was the way the relationship between Justin and his mom played out in the end. Her change of heart was far too sudden and abrupt. It didn't really fit the story and just made things too perfect to be real.

I've read a couple of NA M/M stories lately and can't avoid the comparisons. This was more on the fluffy, sweet side than a profound, in-depth realistic romance. Despite the issues I had with it, it's an overall fell-good friends-to-lovers story that I can recommend to fans of M/M romance!

Purchase links: Amazon / Barnes and Noble / iTunes / Google Play

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