Anthony is just about everybody’s favorite person. He’s a matchmaker and a friend to all. Always the life of the party, he goes out drinking and dancing, and he’s had his share of hookups. But Anthony has never really forgotten the boy who left him 17 years ago. Walter and Anthony had been swimming in the river, and Anthony’s ankle got caught and he nearly drowned. When he woke up in the hospital, Walter was gone. He never came to visit and they met only once more, and that’s when Walter told him he was no good, and Anthony would be better off without him. Anthony was left a broken man.
Walter hasn’t forgotten Anthony, but he’s also convinced himself he was the reason Anthony nearly died. There were other incidents like that as well, and Walter figures he’s just better off alone so he can’t hurt anyone else. Walter is a scientist, but now he owns a dive store/bar in the Florida Keys. Imagine his surprise when Anthony and some friends walk into his bar. Walter is not sure what he feels when he lays eyes on Anthony for the first time in 12 years, but circumstances make it impossible to stay away.
As much as it pains me to say it, I didn’t enjoy In Over Our Heads very much at all. I wanted to. I’ve always liked a good second chance at love story. The blurb caught my attention, so when it was time for me to pick it up and start reading, I was excited. It went downhill from there.
I didn’t connect with either MC. Anthony was written so stereotypically femme, he may as well been on an 80s sitcom, snapping his fingers and saying, “FABULOUS!” I cringed at almost everything he said. Also, he called everybody “doll” or “dollface” or a few other terms of endearment…over, and over, and over, and over again. Instead of being cute and funny, it was taxing and overwhelming.
Walter brooded constantly. I don’t remember a single smile until he and Anthony had a brief (all too brief) period of happiness–before things went to hell again. He ran hot and cold (mostly cold). He doesn’t want Anthony, but he becomes uber protective when Anthony decides to try scuba diving. He even does a little dirty dancing with Anthony before Anthony got confused and ran off. It got to the point where I wanted to reach through the Kindle and slap him. Hard.
I didn’t feel any chemistry between Anthony and Walter. I didn’t feel that electric zing between them. I couldn’t connect with either of them. I can’t count all the times I rolled my eyes. Some moments actually physically pained me. I kept hoping it would get better, and it did, for a very short period of time, but then, it returned to the abyss. I wanted them both to pull themselves together and realize they were being…well…jerks. There was too much hot and cold. In fact, I dare say this book could have been 50 pages shorter. Perhaps, if that was the case, In Over Our Heads could have been a decent story. Truth is, when they (especially Walter) finally find their HEA, I had stopped caring and was ready to move on to another book. God, I hate writing that. I feel guilty about my feelings.
Not everything was bad, though. There were four major background characters. Miles was Walter’s brother, and Jonathan, Marco, and Sophia were close friends to Anthony. I was especially fond of those three. They were very supportive of Anthony. They encouraged him to go after what he wanted, but when Anthony’s heart is broken yet again, they comforted him, and even called Walter a few choice names. Everyone needs friends like that.
I also enjoyed reading the snorkeling and scuba diving scenes. I particularly liked when Anthony described his snorkeling experience as stumbling into a scene from “Finding Nemo.” Thanks to that, I was able to imagine all the colors and different forms of sea life. The same thing happened when Anthony and Sophia followed an “electric fish.” Once again, the color description was very detailed and brought a clear picture to my head.
I’m going to close by saying just because I wasn’t fond of In Over Our Heads doesn’t make it a terrible book. I know there are people who enjoy extended periods of extreme angst and moody main characters. I just know this book wasn’t for me.
A review copy of this book was provided by Dreamspinner Press.