I blame the blurb. It all sounded so... good. Nice. Great way to spend an hour reading. Whatever.
Here, take a look:
"Loving your best friend is hard . . . especially when he's marrying someone else.
On the surface, Steve Campbell seems to have it all: a beautiful home, a snazzy car, and a dream job as one of the country’s top 3-D optics researchers. But underneath, he’s restless and dissatisfied, tired of empty encounters with leggy lab assistants and endless evenings alone.
A chance meeting with a handsome escort lifts Steve’s spirits and opens his eyes to his long-repressed attraction to men—and his love for his best friend and business partner, Connor Morrison.
Connor might’ve loved Steve like that once, but now it’s too late for their happily ever after; Connor’s about to ask his boyfriend to marry him. Fortunately, it's never too late to learn about yourself, and maybe Steve can find a happy ending on his own."
So, what's the problem?
Basically, this is not a romance. It's more like an attempt of closing your overstuffed suitcase. You know? At some point, you'll just try to shove it all in, and won't even mind the wrinkled mess you made.
Steve is hetero. Or not. He seems that way, but there's that thing about his friend Connor, who's gay, in a relationship and happy, that bothers him. He's awkward, confused and still kind of suffers from all those teenage insecurities.
First thing that bothered me was the feeling I started reading this from the middle. I can't describe it any better. It started kind of fast, and it never slowed down. I know, it's a short story, there's no room to stretch, but still...
What I liked in this story is Dylan. He's a male escort that Steve meets by accident one night, and later spends some time with. Dylan was great. I liked him from the moment he showed up, and he was really a bright spot.
The rest of the story, honestly, left me kind of confused. So, Steve is hetero, but he's in love with his best friend. He thinks he's hetero, because he hasn't had sex with a man since college. He thinks he's hetero...?
Anyway, you've gotta admit, you'd think Steve will confess everything to Connor, Connor would leave his boy Wes, and they'd live happily ever after.
Or - Steve will realize he's in love with Dylan (who looks quite a lot like Connor), Dylan would realize the same, leave the escort business, and they'd live happily ever after.
Wrong on both counts.
Steve admitted his feelings to Connor. They talked a bit, and that was that.
Then, Steve decided not to continue seeing Dylan, and...
Well, let's just say I'm not too fond of ending the story with our hero Steve filling out an online dating profile. That's not my favorite epilogue of all, for sure.
I (sadly) had no idea there's a book that comes before this one - Priceless - about Connor and his (now) fiance Wes. Maybe reading that would've helped me with this one. Now, we'll never know.
The ARC kindly provided by NetGalley