This story was cute and sweet. Eddie is a city man, an editor and ghost writer who hates to ask for help, but he needs all kinds of help when he buys a far and his boyfriend breaks up with him. He’s a likable character despite his got-to-do-it-on-my-own ways. The author gives little real basis for the attitude, but that doesn’t diminish the character. Sam on the other hand is Amish, raised on a farm believing being gay is a sin. His father throws him off the farm for this. Sam is a sweet, shy young man just nineteen, but he’s a hard worker with a decent mind we discover later in the story. Eddie who’s attracted to Sam right off but doesn’t make any moves because he’s almost ten years older than Sam, but as they work together, feelings can’t be contained and Eddie and Sam start to fall in love. It’s a slow burner, so don’t expect much sex.
I like my romance a little hotter, but I think those who like sweetness and a little angst will enjoy this read. It is short at just over 8 hours and I didn’t really start to enjoy it until the last four chapters when one of the farm animals, a pot belly pig starts acting out. The pig runs away from a farm owned by and elderly man where things are in disrepair and pigs are in cages in terrible conditions. The pig finally herded Eddie and Sam to that farm and they found dead pigs as well as the deplorable conditions the living ones are in.
Eddie is in debt and on the verge of selling his own farm and couldn’t see how he could save the pigs. Sam inspired him by talking to the owner and convincing the owner to sell. Seeing that Sam is willing to stick by him and help anyway he could—Sam offered to get another job and throw in his own meager savings to help buy the pigs and care for them. With this inspiration, Eddie decides it’s time to ask for help. So, he does and he gets plenty of money to save his farm and the pigs.
As I said it is a cute story, and both our main characters are very likable and Sam is especially easy for me to relate to with his shyness. Still his upbringing makes him able to move past that to get things done like communicating with people when he obviously finds it hard. For me this book is a little slow. The writing is good, strong and the characters nicely drawn. I recommend Tender Mercies to those who like slow burning, sweet romances.