Friday, October 21, 2016

ARC Review: Interborough (Five Boroughs, #4) by Santino Hassell

The Raymond Rodriguez from a few years ago wouldn’t recognize the guy he is today. He’s left his slacker ways far behind him and is now juggling two jobs and school. But the balancing act doesn’t allow much time for the man he loves.

David is doing his best to be supportive, but problems at work and his own insecurity leave him frustrated—in more ways than the obvious—whenever he goes to bed before Raymond gets home. The heat and affection between them is still there, but they barely have the time or energy to enjoy it. And it doesn’t help that Raymond is still hiding David from his colleagues.

The stress mounts so high that a vacation in paradise is filled with turmoil instead of harmony, and culminates on their return to the five boroughs with broken promises and heartache. They have to figure out how to stop allowing their differences to overshadow their love. It’s the only way they’ll make it to forever.

Jewel's  rating:

Man, Santino Hassell sure knows how to put a couple through hell before giving them their happy (not to mention his readers!). David and Raymond really earn their HEA. But, the good news is that they actually get a solid HEA here, rather than the HFN they got at the end of Sunset Park. Happy Achievement, unlocked!​ ​I've gotta say, though, Interborough was one ​emotionally ​exhausting read.​​

Interborough, minus the happy ending, is what happens when a couple doesn't take time to be a couple. When everything else gets in the way. When one person insists on doing everything on his own. Or when the other person lets his insecurities take over. And not having that couple time to keep the bond going is tearing Ray and David apart. Both of them are under a lot of stress and pressure and that takes one helluva toll on their relationship.​ And things build and build and build...until...they break.

My heart broke every time David said "I miss you" or Raymond would say "Just a little longer." Because neither of them were really talking things out - they would have to see each other for that, anyway. They would, instead, get irritated and snipe and argue because they were both too stressed out and too low on sleep. The only time they could manage to communicate at all was when they were having sex. Unfortunately, there wasn't much time for that, either.

​The writing was fantastic, just as I have come to expect from Santino Hassell. And his characters just feel so real. Real people overcoming real problems and figuring out life as they go. Is this series light? Hell, no. You will feel every bit of sadness, pain, and frustration that the MC's feel. Thankfully, you will also feel their happiness. Glorious, glorious happiness. By the end of Interborough I felt like Ray and David were very solid. They made it through the tough times and came through it all the stronger. They worked for their happy and I feel sure it's a forever thing. But damn, did they have to walk through fiery lava to get there.

ARC of Interborough was generously provided by the author, in exchange for an honest review.

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