Gabriel's Storm Book Cover Gabriel's Storm
An amnesia/forced-proximity gay romance
Sue Brown
LGBT, Gay Romance, Gay Fiction
One Hat Press; 2 edition
May 10, 2020

A man still mourning his family rescues a man with no memory. Can they heal each other?

A year after he lost his wife and child to a sudden storm, Gabriel Pennant stands vigil on a Cornish clifftop and spots a small boat in distress as another storm rolls in. Gabriel fights strong winds and dangerous waves to rescue an unconscious young man. He carries the man back to his cottage and sits with him until he wakes, only to discover he’s suffering from amnesia.

When Sam wakes up in the cottage of a brooding, handsome stranger with a tragic past who saved him from drowning but obviously doesn’t want him there, he remembers nothing except being captive in his own body.

Then they are trapped together as the village is cut off by a landslip, and Gabriel has no choice but to offer grudging hospitality. Gabriel finds himself unwillingly attracted to his houseguest, and Sam just wants to take away the pain in the eyes of the lonely widower. But first they need to find out who Sam is and why he’s having nightmares about men trying to kill him.

Available at Amazon.

Reviewed by Ulysses Dietz

Member of The Paranormal Guild Review Team

Sue Brown is a good author. After this book, I’ve determined that I must go to Cornwall to see what it’s all about. How many books have I read set on the Cornish coast somewhere? It must be a magical place, not like its American equivalents, such as Cape Cod. I don’t think there is, emotionally, an American equivalent. Maybe the coast of Maine.

Gabriel Pennant is a graphic designer who lives in an isolated coastal village in Cornwall because his wife is a local. He and Jenny and their son Michael find complete happiness there, until a freak storm sweeps his wife and child away, leaving Gabriel irreparably broken, watching the sea from atop the cliff day after day, wondering if he shouldn’t just join his lost family in the waves below.

Then Gabriel spots a tiny white boat being tossed in the waves of another approaching storm and risks his life to rescue the young man he finds lying unconscious and half-drowned on its deck. It is this not-quite-magical event, the sea giving something back to a man from whom it has taken everything, that sets the narrative for the book. It’s a great set-up, made better by the vivid presence of Toby, Jenny’s twin brother, who is the town doctor, and the rescued man himself, known only as Sam because of his amnesia. Yeah, amnesia is such a classic romance trope, but used to great effect here.

Anyone who’s ever seen the UK television series “Doc Martin” knows something of village life on the Cornish coast. It is low-hanging fruit for a skilled novelist, especially if she can create characters that jump off the page and pull you into their fictional world. “Gabriel’s Storm” (and there’s a pun in there) is a perfect example of skill and setting used in a deft balance. It fulfills all its promises, yet also remains both plausible and fantastical at the same time.