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Featured Story: Family


Renee Stevens

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Happy Monday! Why is it happy? Because it's time to take a look at another review from our wonderful review team!  Enjoy!

Family
by Dabeagle

Reviewer: spikey582
Status: Complete
Word Count: 51,241

I’ve read quite a bit of Dabeagle’s stories over the years, and for one reason or another this is one I’ve found myself revisiting more than once since he posted it in 2019.

In Family we meet Brandon Crosby, a man with very little going on in his life. He works in an IT department for a company selling point-of-sale equipment. Other than occasional nights out with friends, he spends his nights alone in his apartment, recounting his day to a picture of the husband and daughter he lost in an accident. 

Things soon change for Brandon, as a new guy at work named Hal starts working in the sales department. After a bit of gentle teasing from his friends, Brandon admits that Hal is exactly his type. On top of this, he soon meets his neighbor from across the hall, Isaac, a 14-year-old boy from across the hall who has been seemingly abandoned by his family. 

In short order Brandon’s life becomes a lot busier, with burgeoning relationships, new romance, and added responsibility of trying to guide a teenage boy through life. We get to see Brandon as he navigates through his new situation, and the various pitfalls such a situation brings.  Perhaps more importantly we get to see Brandon as he learns to open his heart to new possibilities, as he recovers from a devastating personal tragedy and slowly builds a new titular family.  

I think one of the reasons I really like this story is that we get to see someone after the tragedy has already happened. How they’ve responded how their life has gone. Moreover, we get to see this person as they learn to move on and make something more out of the bad hand they were dealt.  

As is common for all of Dabeagle’s writing, the story is not drawn out, he keeps a quick pace and gets to the good stuff as soon as possible. He manages to tell this amazing, romantic, heart-felt story in just 10 chapters.  But there is a real possibility that this will leave you wanting more.  So if you haven’t had the chance yet, go check this story out.

Category: Fiction  Genres: Comedy, Drama, Romance  Tags: teen, mature adult  Rating: Teen

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This is one of my favorite Dabeagle stories, because it is so sunny, despite its dark moments.  It shows men stepping up to the plate and being good fathers, in contrast to so many of Dabeagle's stories, in which parents, especially fathers, are generally sorry excuses for human beings.  The antithesis of Family would be Ticking, which is another of my favorite Dabeagle stories, in which the parents and surrogate parents are either neglectful or actively damaging the children in their care, though there is of course redemption in the story, as well as horror.

I re-read Family fairly often, especially when I need a lift, whereas Ticking is so dark and intense that I have to ration my re-reads of it.  Both stories are great, and they illustrate Dabeagle's range as a writer.

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