“You intrigue me Harper. I want to figure out why. I find puzzles irresistible, and that’s what you are to me. A puzzle I want to uncover, one piece at a time.”
So begins Del’s single-minded pursuit of Harper, the bookstore owner and recent widower in the small town of Mapson where Del and his brothers live. Those familiar with Talia Carmichael’s Something in Common series will recall that Del is one of a triplet set of brothers and guardian to their much younger twin brothers, Dar and Rey. All 5 brothers were abused by their parents who were killed in a fiery car crash at the end of the first novel in the series.
Irresistible picks up at that point and explores Del’s long kept secret and how it ultimately affects his desire to get to know Harper. At first, Del, who comes off as cold and distant, makes it clear that he is not interested in any kind of relationship. This is just fine with Harper who is still trying to cope with the loss of his husband some 19 months after his death. However, both men find themselves irresistibly drawn to each other and it soon becomes clear that both are in unchartered territory and falling hopelessly in love.
Set against the backdrop of the ongoing building of both the community center and the safe house Del and his brothers are both funding and overseeing, the two men do something rarely seen in m/m romance novels and it is quite refreshing –they court one another—date. They allow their friendship to blossom and their regard for one another to take root. Unlike most contemporary novels in this genre, there is no rush to the furious hot sex scene. Rather we see their love grow bit by bit, and as it does, we get to know theses two men—their hurts and loves, their secrets, and their fears.
It is in this courtship that Carmichael’s writing really shines. This author builds the romance aspect of her story slowly, element by element, and you fall helplessly in love with her characters as a result. She draws you into their lives and shows you their innermost emotions and sometimes leaves you absolutely breathless at the beauty of their hearts.
My only criticism of this novel stems from the sheer number of side characters, with what seemed to be an endless supply of more and more and more. Every chapter brought the mention of another brother—or friend and his brothers—so much so that after a while it was difficult to keep them straight. I wished that Carmichael had been more selective in her introduction of the side characters, giving us just a few that might be the focus of her next novel in this series. After a while it was just too overwhelming and became a distraction that pulled me from the story one too many times.
However this shortcoming paled in comparison to the strength of the love story that was simply beautiful to read. There were many quotable moments in this novel. In closing, I would like to leave you with one of my favorites and say to you, dear reader, that I hope you check out this novel for yourself. Despite its minor flaw, Irresistible is well worth the read. Now, for that quote:
“The only things capable of hurting you are those that you let do it. Instead of being a bystander in your own life, make your own path and conquer all that tries to bring you down.”