Sexy bartender Seth Marino is the epitome of the allure and sophistication for which the town of Lavender Shores is known. For twenty years, Seth has found contentment and happiness as co-owner of the Blue Blossom Bed-and-Breakfast. Seth’s kind heart, good looks, and humor charm both locals and tourists—except the one person who despises him.
Charley Perez began building the life of his dreams a few years before Seth moved to town. Just as his hard work was about to pay off, Charley saw his hopes for building a restaurant worthy of his abuela’s recipes slip through his fingers when Seth arrived. Sure, maybe Charley has a temper, perhaps he should smile more, but does the whole world have to lay out the red carpet for the slutty bartender while never giving Charley a break?
When Lavender Shores welcomes a star-studded food-and-wine celebration, Seth and Charley are forced to work together, leading to an explosion of anger and passion. Both men find the heat and fire of hatred morphing into an irresistible attraction. But even as Seth sees a different side of Charley, the hurt and anger of the past simmer below the surface, threatening the future. And a lifetime of struggle isn’t easy for Charley, who must find the courage to show his true self in seeking help and reaching for his dreams.
Christelle's rating :
I just LOVED it : for me, the best of the "Lavender Shores" series, set in a small town closed to San Francisco, filled with many, many hot gay men. Each time I read one of the books of this series, I can’t help going on the “Lavender Shores website” dedicated to this series with lovely pics of the settings and many of the characters.
It can be read as a standalone and this time, we finally get the story of the “famous” bartender, Seth, and his long-time enemy, Charley, owner of a Mexican tavern. Yep, you can guess, it’s an “enemies-to-lovers” MM romance, with both MCs in their 40s. Yummy !!!
And what a blast I had. First, the prologue is smoking, scorching hot. And then, from this prologue to the swooning epilogue over several months, it’s a delicious revelation of all the angst, jealousy and hurt between Charley and Seth and a great firework of chemistry.
I loved both MCs, especially Charley, his uncontrolled tamper and his redeeming, and the reflections they both went through when giving in to their lust. And I greatly enjoyed the secondary characters, the way the author slowly revealed the how and why of what’s going on and the level of steam.
Recommended, especially if you’re a fan of this series.
ARC of “The Victorian” was generously provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
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