From This Window (Heartwarming), Diana Jean

From This WindowRating: 3.5 Stars

Publisher: Dreamspinner Press

Genre: Gay Romance

Tags: Christmas, HFN, Short Story

Length: 41 Pages

Reviewer: Cindi

Purchase At: Dreamspinner Press,


Official Blurb:

Agoraphobic Lucas Davidson spends his days watching people from his window, taking detailed notes of what he thinks their lives are like. Occasionally he’ll go downstairs to the Da Vinci Café and fulfill his quota for human contact. That’s where part-time clerk Jeremy Roberts meets him. Lucas intrigues him, so Jeremy coerces him into attending a Christmas Eve party, and one night of fun turns in to a morning of choices. Can Lucas accept the colorful world Jeremy shows him, or do his introverted issues run too deep for anyone to help him?


Hikikomori – Hikikomori (ひきこもり or 引き籠もり Hikikomori?, literally “pulling inward, being confined”, i.e., “acute social withdrawal“) is a Japanese term to refer to the phenomenon of reclusive adolescents or adults who withdraw from social life, often seeking extreme degrees ofisolation and confinement. The term hikikomori refers to both the sociological phenomenon in general as well as to people belonging to this societal group.


Hikikomori. Agoraphobia. Both words are used either in this short story or the blurb to describe Lucas’s condition. He spends his days and evenings staring out of his apartment window, taking detailed notes of everything he sees. His apartment is bland, with no personal touches other than books and his many journals. He spends a lot of time in the coffee shop in his building but he doesn’t venture beyond there. 

Jeremy (who also lives in the apartment building) works at the coffee shop and he has watched Lucas over time and has gradually gotten to know him a little. Not much, as Lucas would never be called social. He doesn’t like people. He avoids crowds. His personality would never be called warm. He’s simply numb, choosing to watch the world instead of living in it. Jeremy is outgoing and pushes his way into Lucas’s space whether the other man wants it or not. 

Each morning Lucas watches from his window as Jeremy walks into the department store across the street. It’s the same time every morning, each time leaving without having purchased anything. On Christmas Eve Jeremy kidnaps pushes Lucas to attend his Christmas party down the hall in his apartment. For the first time in three years Lucas allows himself to feel, to simply be, without the constant numbness that so often takes up his days.

The story was nice but I’m going to go with others who state that this story really needs a few more pages added to it. While it ended well enough, I don’t feel that enough information was given to explain why Lucas has the condition that keeps him basically confined to his apartment building. It was explained but yet not. Also, I would have liked to have learned a little bit more about Jeremy. A little is mentioned about what he does when he’s not working at the coffee shop but not nearly enough.

Jeremy’s daily visits to the department store are eventually explained and I thought that was nice. Lucas is not a very likable person but I did warm to him a bit as the story played out.

Otherwise, a nice story but one that would have benefited greatly by having a few more details added about each main character.


This short story was provided by Dreamspinner Press in exchange for a fair and honest review.

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Kazza K

Agoraphobia is always tricky to portray in such a short story but it’s an interesting premise. Like the detailed explanation at the top, Cindi. Nice 🙂