(Originally posted 10/20/2015)
I feel like I should keep this short and sweet, because 1. I tend to get wordy when we talk about Lori Otto (because she’s AMAZING!) and 2. I have yet to read Side B. So I’ll give a quick rundown of my opinion of Love Like We Do – Side A. Super quick. Maybe… Let’s be honest, probably not.
Acceptance. Understanding. Living and loving for yourself. That’s pretty much Love Like We Do – Side A. The storyline is outside of the box from what you might be used to with her other books, but not any less phenomenal. Katie asked me, “So Lori wrote a M/M?” Short answer? Yes. Long answer? This is nothing like the M/M romance you’re thinking of. While the two characters within the relationship are indeed both males, it’s so much bigger than that. It’s friends and family accepting a sexual orientation. It’s society and the role they may play. It’s deciding how to come to terms with a future you might not have expected. That’s what I love so much about Lori’s novels. She makes you think so deeply, about…everything. Every aspect, every flip side to the coin, every character you meet, and every situation they’re placed in. All of it. Always.
I love that the book was written in two POV’s and NOT from the two that you would expect. It gives an entirely new feel to a romance novel, by seeing it from an outsider’s perspective. Side A is written through the eyes of Jon Scott and Trey Holland. Seeing how the situation affected not only Callen and Max, but the entire cast of characters was brilliantly done. All of the leading characters you’ve met before show up here (Eeek for Jack!) and seeing how they handle the news of Max and Callen was so interesting. I can’t wait to feel the entire story from Max and Callen in Side B though. Cannot. Wait.
In true Lori Otto fashion, she has written yet another breathtaking story that makes you think and feel so intensely, while demanding your undivided attention and will leave you begging for more. Maybe it’s just the fangirl coming out in me, but I feel like she can do no wrong. Otto’s writing is flawless, so eloquent, and always unique. Love Like We Do is right up there in quality with any and all of her previous releases. She’s just a pro at what she does, and I need her to keep whipping these puppies out every few months. (I never said *I* was eloquent. Just sayin’)
Overall, Love Like We Do – Side A will make you think and feel. It’s that simple. Its pure Otto brilliance with a highly emotional storyline, breathtaking writing, and includes characters we’ve all come to know and love. You really can’t go wrong with a combo like that, right? I sure don’t think so.
Side B, let’s go! Eeek!
Lori’s passion for writing began in elementary school. She received the highest score at Toler Elementary School on the creative writing essay portion of the state’s standardized test, which was centered around a Peanuts cartoon. Not only did she excel at writing, she enjoyed the freedom that it afforded her. She could create entire worlds based solely on her over-active imagination.
Lori’s high school English teacher supported her endeavors in poetry and essay writing. At the University of Texas in Arlington, she majored in Communications with a focus on Journalism, and minored in Art. Her dream was to become an advertising copywriter, until her advertising professor encouraged her to shift her focus to creative writing, because her talents were being wasted on advertising copy. She briefly considered it, but after doing well in a graphic design course, she switched gears, and eventually became a Creative Director and Marketing Manager for Clear Channel Outdoor.
Ten years later, Lori found herself burned out from exclusively writing sales and marketing materials. She left outdoor advertising and went into retail, working as the Lead Genius in her local Apple Store. The career change gave her more free time to focus on her other interests.
After an exhilarating, collaborative writing project, she had an idea for an original novel. The characters and their rich stories would keep her awake at night, and even with barely any sleep, she felt more alert and alive than she had in years. Her days off were spent in cafés, sandwich shops and bookstores, feverishly trying to get all of the details out of her head and onto paper.
In the spring of 2009, after a few months of writing, Lori decided to tweak one chapter from the novel-in-progress and enter it as a short story in the 78th Annual Writer’s Digest Writing Competition, where she was awarded Honorable Mention in the Mainstream/Literary Short Story category.
A year later, she completed a series of three novels–Lost and Found, Time Stands Still, and Never Look Back–which were published in the spring of 2011. The following year, she published her first novella, Not Today, But Someday, a prequel to the Emi Lost & Found series. In the winter of 2012, Lori published her first YA novel, Contessa.