Friday, May 19, 2017

ARC Review: Ready for Love by Stella Starling (Semper Fi; Forever Faithful Series 1)


Jake Hansen has been crushing on Gabe Byrne for half his life, but since Gabe is a straight, self-proclaimed commitment-phobe who moved away years ago to join the Marines, that crush is strictly a fantasy-best-enjoyed-in-private. And even when Gabe starts to flirt with him like crazy, Jake still knows better than to think it means anything.

Because falling in love with your straight bestie? Not just a cliche, but a guaranteed recipe for disaster.


Growing up, Gabe never saw "Little Jakey" as anything more than the kid who always liked to tag along after him and his brothers, but somehow, being friends with Jake has become the best part of his day. And after a seven-month deployment? Seeing Jake is the one thing he's looking forward to the most.

He just didn't expect that hanging out in person again would be so confusing... or keep blurring the lines about just how straight he is... or keep making him want things that he never thought he would.

Things that seem a lot like forever.

Dani's rating:

If you prefer gritty stories with angst and true life drama, this book is not for you. If, on the other hand, you read fiction to escape and crave the occasional book equivalent of a giant chocolate chip cookie—sweet, delicious & guilt free—you will devour Ready For Love.

I read and enjoyed Stella Starling's Beloved series but would have preferred the fluff without the mystery/stalker plotline. I got my wish with Ready For Love.

This book is all about the relationship: sexual tension galore, opposites attract, one toppy Marine, one cute as hell flight attendant, and a HEA for miles!

Gabe and Jake made an appearance in Be Loved (Brandon and Shane's story), and I just knew the definitely-NOT-gay Marine would fall for charming Little Jakey (who's not so little anymore).

When the book begins, the MCs are already close friends. Gabe was deployed for months; he and Jake texted and/or Skyped every day.

But one night of dancing creates sparks Gabe isn't ready for. He doesn't want to mess up the friendship, but he can't stop thinking about Jake's butt. What's a man to do?

I liked that Gabe didn't get all broody about his bisexuality; initially, he's vaguely embarrassed of being seen holding hands with a man, but he more than makes that up to Jake with a very public, um, homecoming.

There is a strong sense of family in this story. Jake is really close to his mom, who's in remission following a battle with breast cancer, and Gabe's family is super tightknit.

When Jake's usually energetic mom starts coming home from work early to take naps, Jake worries the fatigue may be a bad sign and pushes her to see an oncologist. But he doesn't want to bother Gabe with his concerns; after all, Gabe likes the fun, carefree Jake. Gabe, however, is more than ready to step up and be the boyfriend Jake deserves.

This is such a romantic story, but it's also ridiculously sexy. Two words: WALL. SEX. Bam! *mic drop*

Ready For Love is pure feel-good GOLD! I couldn't stop smiling. Gah! *hugs Kindle*

Book 2 can't come soon enough (I would love Zach and Blair's story; they'd be even better together)!

Get the book:


Beware of the person of one book.
~Thomas Aquinas

An ARC of this book was provided by the author in exchange for an honest review. Download links are provided as a courtesy and do not constitute an endorsement of or affiliation with the book, author, publisher, or website listed.

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