Identical twins Aiden and Max Kingsman have been a matched set their whole lives. When they were children, Aiden was happy to follow his extroverted brother’s lead, but now that they’re in college, being “my brother, Aiden” is starting to get old. He’s itching to discover who he is outside of his “twin” identity.
Oliver’s goals for the summer are simple: survive his invasive family, keep his divorced parents from killing each other, and stay in shape for rowing season. He’s thrilled when he runs into his old friends, the Kingsman twins, especially Aiden, the object of a childhood crush. Aiden is all grown-up, but some things have stayed the same: his messy curls, his stability, and how breathless he makes Oliver. Oliver’s crush comes back full force, and the feeling is mutual. Summer just got a whole lot hotter.
Fun-loving Max takes one thing seriously: his role as “big brother.” When Aiden drifts away, Max can’t understand how his own twin could choose a boy over him. Summer won’t last forever, and with friendship, family, and happily ever after on the line, they’ll have to navigate their changing relationships before it’s too late.
This book wasn't quite what I was expecting, but I enjoyed it, nonetheless.
The story was told from three points of view, Aiden's, Max's and Oliver's, because this book truly belonged to all three.
I loved how, even from a very early age, Oliver was always a part of the Kingsman family. With his parents fighting non-stop, Oliver had always wanted to be a Kingsman, needed the familial stability, but those hopes were quickly dashed when his parents divorced and he had to move away.
Fast forward 14 years and Oliver was unexpectedly reunited with Max and his childhood crush, Aiden, and they resumed their easy friendship as if no time at all had passed.
Except that both Oliver and Aiden had both come out as gay, which added a new, interesting twist to their 3-way friendship.
Where before the boys had shared pretty much everything between them equally, the attraction between Oliver and Aiden made sharing *everything* with Max difficult. Well, impossible really.
Which Max resented, a LOT, since he and his identical twin had previously grown up as a team of two, after Oliver moved away.
Although the problem of each twin growing up and finding their own way as individuals had existed long before Oliver's return, he was definitely the match that lit the powder keg of emotions and angst that the twins needed to resolve.
I felt terrible for each of the three boys, as they each had their own set of issues to overcome. Oliver incorrectly saw himself as being the problem causing strife between Aiden and Max, so at one point, he decided to remove himself from the equation and go back to NYC.
But the thought of Oliver not being a part of their lives (again) lit a fire under the feuding twins to make a genuine effort to at least begin working through their mountain of problems.
I'll be honest, with the lack of previous romantic experience that Aiden and Max had, at times the story felt very YA, instead of NA. In spite of the fact that the twins were 20 years old, they read as a good deal younger.
However, when the steamier bits between Aiden and Oliver happened, those were full-on adult. And pretty damn hot.
But their first time, with NO LUBE, GAH! Really??? Why not just stick to sloppy blowjobs until having everything that was *needed* for that event to be more enjoyable?
Spit only goes so far, trust me on that.
The epilogue, from 3 years down the road, was a bit sappy sweet, but I didn't mind that so much this time.
Overall, I'd rate this one at a bit over 4 stars.
My ARC copy of the book was provided by the publisher through NetGalley for a fair, unbiased review.
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