In between battling off the heat and nursing my poor abs that got hurt from excessive laughter this book was a perfect hit in the romance genre for me.
I met Anne Tenino’s writing style with the first book in this series Whitetail Rock and I loved her. It was a short story but it was good. Then came The Fix and even though it was even shorter than the previous one (more like a filler) it was still good. And we meet Sam and Ian there, shortly, but if someone told me that this author would make such a good story out of them I’d laugh and wave it off. As it is, I’m the fool for this story was perfect.
Sam as I met him was a weird guy, too much into romance novels, too much expecting life to be like one. He was so encompassed in them I never thought he could see reality, if it hit him in the face. And that was that is somewhat true. Sam is this very tall, very skinny, very awkward guy with a load of issues trailing him. His romantic past, not so romantic, you could even say he’s been awfully used. But then again the way he sees himself no wonder he doesn’t expect good things to ever happen to him. Yeah, sure, he dreams of mister perfect, and while I roll my eyes at that, mister perfects hits him right in the head… with a rugby ball… and his semi naked…
The moment Sam lays eyes on Ian he’s mesmerized. How could he not when Ian runs toward him half naked, with only his shorts looking like he came down from the Highlands. Only thing missing is the damn kilt and a sword on his hand. Before Sam could think twice he asks Ian for a cup of coffee… Big, big mistake. A Demi-God like Ian would never, ever, ever go out with him… Right?
Right! Ian is anything but relationship guy. Sam is not even close to being his type and he bluntly tells him so. Better be cruel now and save the kid a heartbreak, cause Ian is far from perfect. Issues with his family have left Ian trying to find his emotional balance and in order to do that he has vowed to stop the pure sex hook-ups and try to find a guy he’d want to be in a relationship with. Not yet, but someday. But Sam? Nah, he’s so not his type.
It’s a stereotype in romance I know, and the plot is pretty much what you think in the beginning. Hot guy meets not so hot guy and falls in love despite him wanting to. That’s the general idea, but, and it’s a big but, Ms. Tenino has an Ace under her sleeve. Her ability to transform a stereotypical romance plot into a perfect, romantic, hot to the boiling point, dipped into humor that is so exquisite you almost never stop laughing your heart out the entire duration of the book, is absolutely, freaking amazing.
Her men are gorgeous and brilliant. Ian is this hard-assed, totally handsome, almost a model guy, ex fireman with some scars on his back that make him even more sexy, who turns from a guy with emotional/commitment issues to the perfect boyfriend in an almost surreal way. And Sam? Oh God, Sam was a damn crown jewel. Never would have thought it that weird kid could be so funny in his awkwardness and that low self-esteem could be turned is such a cute waiting-to-happen disaster. I laughed with him, I felt sad with him, I felt anxious with him and hell I fell it all with him along the best ride toward love I’ve recently read. And I’m not even approaching the steaming hot sexual experiences those two had. It’s too hot to touch or even get close. Even the role-playing scene with Ian actually wearing a kilt was perfect (I thought it’d be such a cliché, but then again I already admitted being a big fool judging before reading).
There are probably too many things I want to add in this review that are currently tangled in my brain and won’t come out, but bottom end is I truly enjoyed this book. It was interesting, entertaining and so very romantic that it made it easily in my “to read again” list. Highly recommended for the fans of the genre.