Fitch Donovan is at a bar helping his sister celebrate her birthday when he sees an amazing group of dancer performing. The women are sexy and one in particular draws Fitch’s attention right away. Fitch is shocked, however, when he realizes the performers are men, yet his attraction to the gorgeous dancer doesn’t fade. Fitch has never even thought about men, and isn’t quite sure what to do with his feelings, but he knows he can’t get the dancer out of his head.
Ansel Becke is often mistaken for a woman with his beautiful face, lithe figure, and sparkly dressing style. He doesn’t mind baiting the straight boys a bit, but he is surprised to find his attention drawn to Fitch as well. Especially because Fitch doesn’t lose interest once realizing Ansel is a guy. But Ansel has had a rough past, including time on the streets, and doesn’t ever see a future for himself with a guy like Fitch.
Despite Ansel’s reservations, the two begin seeing each other and a relationship grows. Fitch isn’t sure how to suddenly tell people he is dating a man after years of only being with women, but he is also falling hard for Ansel and determined to stay with the beautiful dancer he is growing to care for deeply. But Ansel’s demons are hard to shake, and his insecurities and self worth issues make it difficult for him to believe in the relationship, especially when his past comes calling. Now Ansel must decide if he can trust in Fitch’s feelings for him and give himself a chance with the man he is growing to love.
Fierce & Fabulous is the first book in the new Sassy Boyz series by Elizabeth Varlet and I was really excited by how much I enjoyed this one. I will admit to being a bit worried at the start as Fitch thinks Ansel is a woman and starts to have some freak outs when realizing his attraction to a man. I was fearful we would either get into a major denial spiral, or else Fitch’s interest would be focused on the more feminine side of Ansel, given that Ansel dresses frequently in women’s clothes and often is mistaken for a woman. But I was really pleased to see that almost immediately Fitch accepts his interest in Ansel, as well as that he is clearly attracted to and accepts Ansel as a man.
The story really has two focuses as the guys begin building their relationship. The first is Fitch and his coming to terms with his sudden attraction to a man. Fitch’s sister is a lesbian so he is not freaked out by the gay so much as confused and surprised by his own feelings. For those a little on the fence about the OFY/GFY trope, this one definitely is about a close as you can get to “straight man falls for a guy” in that Fitch isn’t attracted to any men other than Ansel. He does some porn watching and some soul searching, but definitely this is an individual attraction more than a realization of his own sexuality. And while I typically prefer the latter in my OFY stories, I found that things worked here as Fitch has a bit of anxiety at first, but then pretty much jumps in full speed and is open and committed to being with Ansel despite the potential fallout from family and friends. It does take him some time to work up the nerve to tell people, which I get, but he never wavers in his commitment to Ansel. Now Fitch’s amazing gay sex prowess after just watching some porn was a bit unrealistic, but it did make for some nice sexy times between them.
The bigger issue in the story is Ansel and his own issues with self worth and feelings of trust. His family was horrible to him and Ansel has been making it on his own for a while. He is as fierce and fabulous as the title suggests, strong and confident in many ways. But at the same time, he was taught that he is nothing and at times those old anxieties come out, especially when elements from his past return. Ansel is living a pretty self destructive life when the story first starts and he has a hard time believing in things with Fitch. I think Varlet does a nice job showing Ansel’s progression and growth over the story and I rooted for him to let himself accept Fitch’s love and believe that he deserved the happiness he was finding.
This story also introduces us to the Sassy Boyz, Ansel’s dance group, who are presumably the focus of the series. I’ll admit I had a little trouble differentiating the guys in this story, but I am really intrigued to see where things go with the series. All of the guys seem to have some rough pasts, and all are pretty far over on the femme, sparkly scale (you all know I love some cross dressing), so I am really excited to read their stories.
Overall I found this one to be really enjoyable. The guys are super sexy together and their chemistry is great. I loved seeing a book where a non-Alpha hero is really celebrated as being gorgeous and sexy and fabulous. And I definitely liked Ansel and Fitch together. There is a lot of heat in this book, but there is also such great warmth between these characters I couldn’t help but root for them to make it together. So a really great start to a new series and I am looking forward to reading more.