Review: Still by Mary Calmes

Posted September 7, 2013 by Leigh in Reviews / 3 Comments

I received this book for free from Publisher in exchange for an honest review.
This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
Review: Still by Mary Calmes
by Mary Calmes

5 Stars


Released: May 15, 2013
Published by Dreamspinner Press
Pages: 190



“It is a breath of fresh air in a genre that generally focuses on new love, and not on what happens after the HEA, as Calmes has done here. Siv and Walter truly are perfect together.” ~Under the Covers

STILL is an absolutely beautiful story that is not often told. It  takes place many years after the perfect HEA, where real life has  happened, the love has lost it’s spark and flamed out, but is
rekindled once again.

Back in 1996, display manager Sivan Cruz and lawyer Walter Wainwright  couldn’t seem to be any more different from each other if they tried.  Sivan is creative and care-free, and Walter is typical Type A and  uptight. For two years they had fussed with and yelled at each other;  then one day, all that tension came to head and ended in the form of  some serious page-burning, uber-hawt sex. We learn that Walter has  had his eye on Sivan for awhile, and he is quick to turn their newfound relationship into something more. Sivan is a bit more  hesitant, but willing to give it a shot. Then fate steps in, and the  rest, as they say, is history.

Fast forward 17 years, and we find that Sivan and Walter are no longer  working as a couple and plan to get divorced. Throughout the story, Calmes gives us glimpses of what happened to their relationship, and as probably is the case for so many people in the real world, life happened. Walter was previously married, with whom he had two children. At the onset of Walter and Sivan’s relationship, Walter’s ex-wife dies in an accident, leaving him to raise both kids. From that fateful day, Sivan never left. In fact, he became a father to both Declan and Chloe, and a house husband for Walter. All the while, Walter climbed the corporate ladder and became partner in his firm.
Doing that, Walter worked hard and long hours and wasn’t at home much. Sivan took care of things at the house, and he loved doing it, but something was missing. He didn’t feel the love any more, and at his suggestion, he and Walter separated.

God, I cannot even explain how this story resonated with me, so very much. Work happens; life happens; something has to give, and it’s usually the one thing people take most for granted ~ an established, comfortable relationship. It’s so easy to do. Walter was working long hours, and on top of that, his personality is not one that gushes or is lovey-dovey. But his working was his way of telling his family that he loves them and is going to take care of them, always. Unfortunately, that wasn’t communicated in words. After the kids were raised and off to college, Sivan put his all into becoming one of the city’s top set designers. They were living day to day, doing the best they could do to take care of their family, but they were neglecting the foundation upon which that family grew ~ their relationship and love for each other.

Calmes writes a beautiful story of Sivan and Walter living life after being separated, and shows how much these men still truly love each other, although each man thought that love from the other was dead. It wasn’t. It was buried deep. They both try dating other men, but somehow, they keep running into each other as their paths continually cross with each other. On top of that, their sexual chemistry never died, so the reader sees how they are are still drawn to the other, and beyond that, through their interactions, the love that these men DO have for each other really is evident. It just took this time apart for each of them to realize it.

I highly, highly recommend STILL. It is a breath of fresh air in a genre that generally focuses on new love, and not on what happens after the HEA, as Calmes has done here. Siv and Walter truly are perfect together. They complement each other in ways that only two people can do after sharing 17 years together. It just took them a little while to realize it themselves. In addition to these amazing men, they are surrounded by equally outstanding family ~ I just LOVE Chloe and Declan…I can only hope to raise such awesome kids ~ and friends. Calmes has outdone herself on writing such spectacular characters to tell a wonderful story. STILL is fabulous and heartfelt, and one that is definitely on my re-read list!

*Review copy provided by publisher

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About Mary Calmes

Mary Calmes lives in Lexington, Kentucky, with her husband and two children and loves all the seasons except summer. She graduated from the University of the Pacific in Stockton, California, with a bachelor's degree in English literature. Due to the fact that it is English lit and not English grammar, do not ask her to point out a clause for you, as it will so not happen. She loves writing, becoming immersed in the process, and falling into the work. She can even tell you what her characters smell like. She loves buying books and going to conventions to meet her fans.

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Guest Reviewer at Under the Covers Book Blog
I am a wife and mom of two sassy and fabulous kids, and I have decided I will be forever 39.After college, I became a paralegal and read only legal documents and eventually some baby naming books.Then about six years ago, I needed to check out all the hype of some teenage vampire romance, and that was all she wrote.It didn't take me long to rediscover my love of reading that I had throughout my youth, and I was devouring every paranormal romance and urban fantasy series I could get my grabby hands on.

Through Amazon forums and Goodreads, I met a lot of amazing women with that same passion, including the lovely ladies who started UTC.While those genres will always be two of my favorites, I have discovered that M/M romance is my primary love.That kiss between Qhuinn and Blay in Phury's book (you BDB lovers know what I'm talking about!) sealed the deal for me.I love a story where love is hard fought and hard won.I am also a firm believer that EVERYONE deserves love and a happy ending, and the beauty in achieving that is what keeps me coming back for more.

I have amassed quite a collection of book boyfriends through the years, with the top two being John Matthew and Jamie Fraser.**le sigh**In the M/M genre, my best buddy is Randy Jensen.Two of my favorite tropes are Friends to Lovers and Out for You, and I enjoy just about any subgenre - PNR, UF, contemporary, historical, RomCom, Young Adult, Erotica, Mystery/Thriller - in my M/M romance.As long as it is written well, eventually gives me an HEA, and makes me have all the feels, I am one happy girl.
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Sophia Rose

I love Mary Calmes’ writing and I look forward to reading this one.


Thanks Leigh!


You’re very welcome ladies!! Hope you enjoy it as much as I did! 🙂