trouble & the wallflowerRating: 4.5 stars
Buy Links: 
 Amazon | All Romance
Length: Novel

After growing up with an agoraphobic mother, Davy Cooper is painfully shy and uncomfortable in social situations.  He never learned to interact with other people until his mother’s death, and he still struggles to socialize, especially when good looking men are involved.  That is why Gavin Walker is making him crazy. Gavin is gorgeous and confident, but definitely trouble.  And for some reason, Gavin has set his sights on Davy.

But Davy knows he is no way prepared for a guy like Gavin, especially since he knows Gavin’s reputation.  Eventually, however, Gavin wears Davy down and he agrees to go out with him. Both men assume it won’t be more than a one time thing and both are surprised at how much they like one another.  Davy gives Gavin a sense of calm and peace in his chaotic life, and Gavin gives Davy confidence to be himself and engage with the world.  The men seem so different, but they find a common ground and a quickly blooming love between them.  But when Gavin is faced with family upheaval and huge changes in his life, Gavin and Davy must figure out if they can still make a future together.

I am a big fan of opposites attract stories and I have heard great things about Boehme’s writing, so I was eager to give this one a try and I am really glad I did.  This story is just so sweet and yummy with two guys who start out a little at odds and end up all adorably and mushily in love.

Both Gavin and Davy start the book out with big walls up.  In Gavin’s case, most of his cocky arrogance is all a facade to cover up for his rough past and the betrayal by his alcoholic mother.  He lives with his grandfather Ray, whom he adores, but Ray is sick and that worries Gavin greatly.  So Gavin is a lot of hipster swagger and has set his sights on Davy.  Davy isn’t so much hiding his true self like Gavin, but is more just hiding completely.  He grew up virtually totally isolated.  His mother home schooled him, rarely let him out of the house, and never let him socialize.  When she died, he was totally unprepared for dealing with the world.  Now he manages to work and have some basic interaction, but he is still so scared and awkward in social situations.

What is so lovely about this story is how quickly the walls fall for both of these men once they get to know one another.  Gavin shows his true self — kind, loving, and protective.  He stops posturing and allows Davy to see the real person inside. And Davy finally feels comfortable interacting, opening up with Gavin in a way he can’t with anyone else.  These guys fall hard for one  another, and as I said, they are so mushy and sweet in their love and adoration for each other.  Not that they are not sexy too; this book has plenty of heat.  But I like guys who aren’t afraid to talk about how they feel and who are comfortable being all out there about their love for one another.

I will say that the first half to two-thirds of the story focuses primarily on the relationship building between these two guys, and at times it was a little slow.  Boehme really succeeds so well in unpacking all the layers to these guys, and their characters are so rich and beautifully well developed. But not a whole lot happens outside of their romance. Toward the later part of the book Gavin must deal with a host of family issues and that is what brings the conflict to the story.  I think it really helps that the guys are solid by then, which enables them to weather the difficult times.  But I just think paring down the beginning might have helped the pacing a little.

Boehme also does a great job with the setting of the book. It takes place in Seattle and there is just a wonderful sense of place.  It is clear how well he knows the area and lots of little touches are included that make you feel like you are really there.  The city really comes alive here, from the sights to the people.

So overall I really enjoyed this one.  As I said, Boehme does just a wonderful job developing Gavin and Davy. I could understand them completely and they are so richly drawn.  And while there are some tough times they must go through, most of this book is just adorably sweet and lovely.  So lots of fun and a great choice if you want something sweet and romantic with some nice heat and two really interesting guys.

Cover Review: I just love this cover. It is so Gavin, just perfectly.  I love that we have a cover model who actually looks just like the character is described.  Just right.

A review copy of this book was provided by Dreamspinner Press.

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