Buy link: Lovegames
Author: M. Jules Aedin
Publisher: Loose Id
Length: Novel

Rating: 4.5

Lovegames is the followup to M. Jules Aedin’s wonderful Paper Planes. It features two secondary characters from that book, rocker Keith Black and actor Adam Cruce.  The couple connect with another very minor character from Paper Planes, the adorable, sparkly twink we meet at the end of the book.

The story opens around when Paper Planes ends, at a Pride concert where Keith’s band is performing.  Keith accidentally bumps into Sebastian Keane and is instantly attracted to the gorgeous young man with the glittery eye makeup.  Keith and Adam are an established couple who like to regularly invite a third person along to play. When Keith tells Adam about Sebastian, and Adam later runs into Sebastian himself, the men decide to invite him to come back to their hotel after the concert.

Well, things between the guys get hot and then hotter as they engage in a wild night.  Even more surprisingly is that they want Sebastian around for the day after, something they never do with their one night hook ups.  Even when Adam and Keith return home, the guys can’t forget each other and, after a couple of months, Sebastian ends up traveling out to L.A. to spend time with Adam and Keith once again. The sparks fly between the three men, but things get difficult when the press finds out about Sebastian.  Things are also complicated by a mysterious stalker sending messages to Adam and tipping off the press. And further complicated by Keith’s mental state, which is fragile at best, and becoming even more unstable with all the stress of the situation.  All three men want to make their relationship more permanent, but making it work may prove difficult.

I really loved this book, although it is quite different in tone than Paper Planes.  While that was a quiet book with a slow build to the relationship, Lovegames starts with a bang and maintains a lot of intensity.  The three guys are crazy hot together and the sex is intense (and I think pretty creative).

I just loved Keith and Adam together and the way Aedin details the nuances of their relationship. You can really feel the love between them and how established they are as a couple.  The descriptions of the way they interact really made me believe them together and see why they work.  Each man is so in tune with his partner and what he needs, especially Adam towards Keith.  Keith is a really interesting character because he has bipolar disorder which causes great mood swings. Sometimes, like after a concert, he is as high as can be, full of energy and excitement. And other times his moods are so low he becomes despondent, fragile, moody, or totally depressed.  I really liked watching the men interact, especially seeing Adam as he navigates through the difficult situation to try to care for Keith.

Keith’s mental health is actually a primary reason for the couple’s unusual arrangement. Although Adam travels with Keith a lot, his shooting schedule for his TV show prevents them from always being together. Sex is often an outlet Keith needs when coming off the high of a show and keeping an open relationship allows both men the ability to be with another person when needed.  And both men enjoy the regular threesomes they share together.

I really liked Sebastian and loved the interplay of the young, everyday college student with these older famous men.  Sebastian has had a huge crush on Adam, so when he meets the man and then gets invited for a night of hot sex with him and Keith he can’t even believe it. I liked how even though they are famous and wealthy, once Sebastian gets to know Adam and Keith it moves past the awe of sleeping with the famous couple and becomes more about them as real people.  Sebastian totally falls for both of the guys, but he is unprepared for the upheaval his outing to the press will cause.

While I thought Keith and Adam’s relationship together was incredibly well developed, I had a harder time with Sebastian. I felt like their time together as a threesome was so limited that I didn’t get a feel for them all together as well as I would have liked.  It is always harder in menage stories when you have an established couple who brings in a third to get the same depth with the new person. I found Sebastian adorable and totally likeable, so I can understand why the guys are drawn to him (and he to them).  But I wish there was a bit more relationship building between them as a threesome before they were ready to commit to one another.

I had a few small quibbles.  First, the ending came up on me pretty quickly.  There is a lot happening at the end of the book and the final resolution ended up feeling a bit rushed. I would have loved five more pages to pull everything together. I also didn’t love the stalker sub plot.  There was enough going on with the three men I think I could have done without that part.

But overall I think this was another wonderful story from Aedin.  I liked that the book was about more than just the threesome, but instead delves into a lot of other issues as well, such as Keith’s mental illness and the costs of fame on your privacy.  All three men were well developed characters with so much detail and nuance I could really feel like I knew them by the end.  And boy was it hot!  I would definitely recommend Lovegames.

P.S.  Although this book is set in the same world as Paper Planes, you defintely don’t need to have read the first book to enjoy it (and I am CRAZY for reading series in order).  The main characters from the first book are mentioned only in the most passing reference and never appear on page.  You will have no problem picking this up and following along, I swear.  But really, Paper Planes is so good you should read it anyway!

Cover Review: Oh, I am sad about this cover because I didn’t love it.  On the positive end, I appreciate how they made an effort to show Sebastian as younger and more twinky than the other two (although his isn’t nearly sparkly enough for our dear Baz).  But what is up with these other two guys? I am not sure which one is supposed to be Keith, but I pictured him much more as a young Mick Jagger type – all swively hips and leather pants and pure sex. Definitely not this goth look with Alice Cooper eye make up looking like he eats puppies in his free time.  And Adam is supposed to be a gorgeous TV actor with a golden tan body.  I picture Ken doll, not either of these guys.  Oh, well.

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