When you fall for a guy who's about to become your stepbrother, do you listen to your heart and risk everything? Or listen to your head...and take one step back?
In high school I had a hundred reasons to steer clear of my soon-to-be-stepbrother, Joe Beneventi. He was a hothead, and I was reserved. His life was football, mine was academics. He wanted to be out and proud, and I desperately needed to keep my orientation secret.
But when we fell in love, my heart took the wheel, and I took every risk to be with Joe. Then one horrible night our secrets shattered. Joe disappeared--wrecking our families and breaking my heart.
Eleven years later, I landed a challenging job at a premier PR firm. And the hotshot publicist who's been assigned to my first big account? Yep. It's Joe. Fate truly hates me because now Joe and I have three days to hole up in a Chicago hotel room and nail down a deal that could make or break our careers. He keeps distracting me, but I'm too jaded to fall for sexy smiles, bedroom eyes, and his impossible-to-ignore body. Except...
I like being close to him again. A little too much. Working together 24/7 is showing me sides of Joe I've never seen before. And when we touch, being together seems like the only step worth taking.
Awww, that was just about perfect in regards to what I was looking for this time around. : )
As the story began, we met introverted and socially-awkward Ash, and life-of-the-party Joe. It was summer and they were very much in love. Ahhh, to be 19 again and in that situation.
But as with young love, life happens, so when the story fast forwards 11 years to present day, the pair had been estranged for over a decade. Yet still in love, unbeknownst to one another.
I adored seeing Ash lose his proverbial shit when he finally met Joe again. Prepared, he was most decidedly not.
I loved watching the guys work through their past issues, slowly reconnecting, heading toward a future together, without any of the clichéd, done-to-death "Big Misunderstanding" bullshit so common to M/M romance.
Sure, shit got in their way, and they had to regroup a few times, but the reader could pretty much tell that both of the MC's weren't going to simply disappear from one another's lives again. Not. Gonna. Happen.
I enjoyed seeing how the flashbacks laid out all of the heavy, internal angst that had *already* happened, and while those dramatic, painful bits were, at times, difficult to read, they were in the past.
The real angst between the MC's in present day came from external sources, reinforcing that it was only their rocky *past* that they needed to overcome, and stresses from their careers could take a goddamn back seat when push came to shove, hallelujah, amen, praise da' lawd.
The steamy bits were verrrrrry steamy, without them hitting the sheets so often that I wanted to skim pages, because "OMMFG, they're fucking again???" Nope, just the right amount of steam, without tromping into gratuitous territory.
The only thing that annoyed me was that Ash (view spoiler)[ gave away ALL of his father's million$$$ (hide spoiler)] which could have helped Joe & Ash (view spoiler)[ keep Joe's adorable Venice beach bungalow (hide spoiler)] instead of them landing in COLD-ASS (view spoiler)[ Boston, (hide spoiler)] because BRRRRR!
I'd rate this one at around 4.25 stars and recommend it to fans of "Unraveling Josh".
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