Kerry Pickering is a low-level publicist in Hollywood. When his firm’s bad-boy client, actor Jericho Knox, gets outed, Kerry is unexpectedly pressed into pretending to be Jericho’s secret fiancé. It’s not the relief that unwillingly-closeted Jericho was looking for, however. Not that he doesn’t find Kerry attractive—because he does. He just doesn’t want a fake life anymore. And Kerry’s only in his house as a job, not because he really likes Jericho. Kerry is tired of Jericho’s antics, and lets him know this.
Still, Jericho’s a good enough actor to make the façade strong. Shame that both Kerry and Jericho begin to believe their hype. See, they both know this “engagement” has an expiration date. Jericho is moving to Vancouver at the end of summer to shoot his new role in a prime time crime drama and Kerry will be cut loose. For that alone, Kerry wants to protect his heart. But the longer he spends in private time with Jericho, the more he falls for the prickly man. Jericho was initially attracted to Kerry, but witnessing his sweet nature up close melts Jericho’s reserve. He doesn’t want to fall for a man he believes set up the whole PR stunt only to capitalize on Jericho’s fame, but even that fear doesn’t hold up for long. They engage in their own explorations, and it seems like everything is turning out very much like the fairytale they have orchestrated for the media.
Naturally, it’s not going to work. Because we need a break-up-to-make-up in this fake fiancé story. I’ll say, despite this being my third “fake boyfriend” book this summer, I was still charmed. It’s a favorite trope, but I found the mutual animosity to be a fun and unique spin that I enjoyed. Generally, the fakes are more voluntary, due to their mutual assistance, but in this case, Kerry and Jericho are rather hostile. It adds to the tension, even knowing that these guys will soon be hot and heavy. And that happens, but they are also sweet and tender, too.
The writing is fun and humorous, with plenty of self-deprecation for both characters. Each man really wants a steady guy, and each man has a busted heart near the end. It’s cool that some friends step up to get them to make amends. And that they recognize they really have something special enough to save. It’s an HEA, naturally.
A review copy of this book was provided by Dreamspinner Press.