Length: 45,000 words
Cover: Harper By Design
Local Parks and Wildlife officer, Jack Brighton, is an ordinary guy who loves his life in the sleepy town of Scottsdale. Along with his Border collie dog, Rosemary, his job, and good friends, he has enough to keep from being lonely.
But then he meets Lawson, and he knows he’s met someone special. There’s more to catching butterflies, Jack realises. Sometimes the most elusive creatures wear bowties, and sometimes they can’t be caught at all.
Lawson soon learns there are butterflies he can’t learn about it in books. They exist only in a touch, in a kiss, in a smile. He just has to let go first, so these butterflies can fly.
Imago is the story of finding love, bowties, and butterflies.
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I’m very late discovering N.R. Walker and her books, and clearly I’ve been seriously missing out. Imago is a most wonderful story; clever, charming, funny, and exciting. If this book and The Weight of the World set the standard, I need to get my shit together and pick up the rest of her books.
But, back to Imago. The book starts with Jack Brighton meeting Lawson ‘Gale—hottest fucking nerd on the planet— on a flight from Melbourne to Tasmania. At first glance the two men couldn’t be more different. Jack is a Wild Life Officer, happiest out and about in nature while Lawson is an academic nerd. But, as is so often the case, opposites attract and Jack and Lawson are pulled together from the start.
Jack is a down-to-earth good guy; easy going and straight forward. Lawson on the other hand is introverted and geeky, and one to speak his mind. Or, as Jack says it:
‘Nerdy, gorgeous, intelligent, and sassy. God, he just keeps on getting better.’
There’s little to no angst involved in their getting together and it’s all the more charming for it. I loved the dinners Jack organised for Lawson, trying to make the next one even better than the one before. In fact, the whole story is more or less angst-free, much to my delight, although there are a few heart-stopping moments. There is however so much to love in this story and about these characters.
I adored how Lawson would just say what he thought, with little concern for how it would be received, and Jack’s delight to be on the receiving end of such honesty was glorious. Jack’s soft spot for Lawson’s bowties was cute, as was his need to make sure that his dog, Rosemary, would get on with Lawson before Jack was willing to commit himself to anything.
I thought I had the story completely figured out early on, only to be surprised when danger reared its head. Initially I was surprised about who ended up throwing himself head first into a perilous situation. When I thought about it a bit more though, I had to admit it made perfect sense, even if the actions were incredibly stupid and made me want to both hug and slap the character in question.
This is such a feel good story, I dare anyone to read it without a permanent smile on their face. I really thought it couldn’t get any more perfect and then I came to the last few paragraphs of this book. They were better than wonderful, leaving me with a stupid but happy grin on my face and watery eyes. It truly was one of the best finales to a romance I have ever read, and it kills me not to quote those lines here, but I don’t want to deprive anybody else of the pleasure I experienced when I read them.
Who knew that the collective name for a group of butterflies is ‘kaleidoscope’. I sure didn’t. But now that I do I can’t get over how very appropriate that is and not just for butterflies either. In fact, I applaud the author for the way in which she managed to draw parallels between butterflies and the two men in her story. It could so easily have felt forced but instead the execution was flawless, smooth and fitting. Once again N.R. Walker leaves me in awe of her storytelling and writing abilities.
“The butterflies he felt when he saw me had morphed into love. The most remarkable metamorphosis’
She is many things; a mother, a wife, a sister, a writer. She has pretty, pretty boys who she gives them life with words.
She likes it when they do dirty, dirty things...but likes it even more when they fall in love. She used to think having people in her head talking to her was weird, until one day she happened across other writers who told her it was normal.
She’s been writing ever since...
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