Sometimes to find love, you must first learn forgiveness.
A dozen years, two thousand miles, and a law degree after high school, Rafi Steiner continues to harbor resentment toward Isaac Jones, his childhood bully turned NBA star. When Isaac appears at Rafi's favorite restaurant acting like a long-lost friend, Rafi bluntly dismisses him.
But Isaac is tenacious and he has his heart set on the grown-up version of the boy he always wanted and never forgot. The way Isaac sees it, he and Rafi are perfect for each other, if only he could sink the most important shot of his life: his one shot at forgiveness.
I hated him. Unequivocally, absolutely, and in every way possible. He was responsible for making my teen years a living hell—if not single-handedly, then at the very least, he held the starring role. Or, in terms he would have understood, he was the quarterback, the pitcher, the forward, the…fuck it, he led the “hey, faggot, nice hair” brigade. Not that it was always about my hair. Sometimes it was my clothes. Other times it was the way I walked or the way I talked. I lived in anticipation of the day he’d come up with some way to taunt me for breathing. Ass. Hole.
So you can imagine how thrilled I was when he walked in the door of my favorite restaurant, two thousand miles away from where we grew up, and had the nerve not only to recognize me, but to not pretend like he didn’t. I mean, who…
I enjoyed this little novella primarily because of Isaac's sweet and tenacious desire for Rafi. The beginning made me smile as Rafi shares with readers why he disliked Isaac but also how he can't resist Isaac, either sexually or emotionally. The romance is quick moving as this is a novella but it still seemed a complete romance. I liked these characters so well that I would like another story featuring the gentle giant Isaac and the quirky Rafi in their simple, heartfelt romance
Cardeno C.'s moving and insightful novella, A Shot at Forgiveness, provides a rather different view of the bullying many gay and lesbian children and teens are forced to endure. ... Is it credible that in some situations the bully is more confused about and tormented by his sexuality than his victim? In my own view, for whatever it's worth, that might explain more than a few cases of bullying. Without including spoilers in this review, I can say there are even more surprising turns in A Shot at Forgiveness than a famous and wealthy NBA MVP's making contact with his former victim. I can also affirm that the way Cardeno C. shapes the story makes them all believable. They certainly don't happen every day, but who'd wish to write or read about every-day matters? I must also praise Cardeno C.'s writing style... Rafi and Isaac's story won me over. I highly recommend it.
Cardeno visits Emile City again! And I couldn't be happier. In this short story we meet Rafi and Isaac. In school, Isaac tormented Rafi mercilessly. Suddenly he shows up in Emile City and acting as though he and Rafi were friends. Rafi is offended that Isaac would dream of coming near him again, after all he put him through. Isaac is kinda stalkerish scary but you know what? It totally works for me. The whole plot of the story makes sense, and I found myself hoping that Rafi wouldn't dismiss a chance at happiness, especially after Isaac comes clean about what he's doing in Emile City.... Cardeno knows how to pull my heartstrings and does it very well.