Saturday, June 18, 2016

Book Review: Short Stay (Love Lessons 3.5) by Heidi Cullinan

Short Stay (Love Lessons, #3.5)
Baz Acker and Elijah Prince have it all. They’re engaged, and their wedding is guaranteed to be a spectacle no event will ever top. So why are they hunkered down in a quiet corner of the Acker mansion, restless and edgy while they wait out the holidays?

When Baz suggests a road trip with Walter and Kelly to Las Vegas, it sounds like an ideal escape, but it turns out Vegas only amplifies their unease. Elijah can’t slough off the self-hating his parents programmed into him, and he worries how that will affect his marriage. Baz, crippled en route because of too much time spent in the car without rest, must face the truth that his wealth and influence can’t always counteract the limits his disability will put on his—and Elijah’s—life.

With help from their friends, a wily poker player, a take-no-prisoners drag queen, and a smooth-talking casino owner, they face the truth that happiness is a state of mind, not a destination where they book a stay. What happens in Vegas won’t stay in Vegas—it will follow them all the way down the aisle.

Todd's rating:

Well, I'm in the minority here, but this one really didn't work that well for me.

I actually enjoyed the initial parts of the story where Baz flees his parents' Chicago home with his fiancée Elijah in tow as they drive the Tesla cross-country to Las Vegas, with Walter and Kelly along for the ride.

They then meet Randy from the Special Delivery series. This was probably my favorite part of the story, their introduction and interactions, but shortly after that, my annoyance began to spike.

Baz is hurting after the trip, which is perfectly understandable given his condition, but he nearly passes out from the pain because he refuses to talk to Elijah and tell him that he's in severe need of rest.

Then the next several chapters are Baz being afraid to open up to Elijah and Elijah being afraid to open up to Baz. Round and round and round and round and round. I found it a bit exhausting.

Instead of engagement rings, these two seriously need to spend that money on a good therapist, one that can help them with their communication phobia.

If a couple can't be open and honest with one another, without it feeling like having their wisdom teeth extracted, then the last thing they need is to get married.

But instead of that, Baz gets the big, bright idea to [...] during the trip, even beginning preparations *before* asking Elijah if he actually wants the same thing.

Again, no communication. And slightly exhausting.

And from that point forward, it was all about the [...] which seems to be an absolute must have in lots of stories lately, but I felt that it was extremely premature here and, quite frankly, made me lose interest in the story.

The story had lots of sex, round after round, but didn't have quite the same Baz and Elijah *spark* that I found in their original book. I found myself wanting to skim once the clothes came off, and it's rare that I skim sexy scenes.

This one came in at just under 3 stars for level of overall enjoyment.

My copy of the book was provided by the publisher in exchange for a fair, unbiased review.

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