Story Rating: 4 stars
Audio Rating: 4.25 stars
Narrator: Nick J. Russo
Length: 3 hours, 2 minutes
Paul is a graduate student that has taken on tutoring other students. He’s sardonic and cranky and keeps people at a distance. When a request comes in from the college’s new softball coach regarding tutoring athletes, Paul wants no part of it, but has no choice as he needs the money. He especially wants no part of it when he realizes that the new coach is Trevor. The same Trevor that was his high school boyfriend and the same Trevor that sacrificed Paul to save himself from being outed.
Trevor just retired from playing major league baseball and he came looking for Paul and a second chance. It’s not quite that easy as Paul has nine years of anger to try to diffuse and his words cut Trevor deep. Paul could go for a revenge fling with Trevor or he could forgive Trevor and hypothetically walk off into the sunset with his first love.
Love, Hypothetically falls into Tenino’s Theta Alpha Gamma universe. If you have read the first book, Frat Boy & Toppy, you will remember that Paul was Sebastian’s roommate who gave Brad such a hard time without explanation. The storyline of Paul and Trevor stands on its own, but knowing Paul’s backstory from the first book certainly helps here.
Paul is back in the dorms much to his horror after Sebastian kicked him out and he’s still as snarky as ever. His behavior is explained more here as he is shown as carrying around years of pain. While in high school, Trevor never wanted to admit that Paul was his boyfriend, was no where near ready to accept who he was or come out, and still dated girls to keep up the appearance he wanted. Trevor chose baseball over Paul all those years ago and then Trevor’s teammates harassed Paul after finding out he was gay. Paul has never been able to get over the hurt that Trevor caused him.
Trevor comes back into Paul’s life full of apologies and full of ideas on how they can now be in a relationship. Paul is still attracted to Trevor, but he has a whole lot that he has to work out within his own head first. To do this, he consults several friends and they all offer Paul something else to think about as he tries to reconcile the past in order to possibly move forward with a future with Trevor. This was all necessary and made perfect sense as just jumping into a relationship with Trevor again after so many years would not have been realistic. However, Paul and Trevor do not spend all that much time together and I would have preferred more of them as opposed to so much of Paul with his friends. I then found myself looking for a little more from them to pull the entire story together.
The narration by Nick J. Russo once again adds more to the story. His performances are always first-rate and he continues his streak here. The story has a lot of back and forth conversation with some attitude that Russo delivers with great timing that increases the entertainment value. When Sebastian and Brad are revisited, their voices remain the same as the first book and are recognizable. Paul’s voice is fitting to his personality and he mostly carries the story. While most of the characters had distinct voices, Paul’s friend, Toby, had a similar voice to Paul. They have a lengthy conversation, one that ties in the title of the book, and it was more difficult to keep track of which character was speaking in that scene and that was the only detraction.
Still, this was an easy story to get into with likable characters in a college setting. For all of Paul’s prickliness, underneath was a hurt guy looking to be loved. The audio is a great length if you are looking for a book to complete in one sitting that is read by a top narrator.