Jamie Albright is a make up vlogger with millions of followers on his YouTube channel and Instagram—as “Roxy.” He’s known for his fab faces, brash fashions, and unfiltered talk. He’s out as gay, has loved make-up since childhood, and been in some porn. Oh, and he’s 23.
Super adventurous Jamie has a bit of a crush on Instagram model, Tyler Jackson. And, one day, captivated by Tyler’s posts about his new rescue pup, Jamie messages Tyler. At 24, Tyler doesn’t really want to do all the work his degree in marine biology would entail. He’s got a good look though, with his sculpted body and detailed tattoos. He’s bisexual and recently broke up with his girlfriend—a model who’d been a big fan of “Roxy” Albright. Tyler’s unsure why “Roxy” is messaging him, but he’s not put off. Tyler always found Jamie’s look intriguing. Their messaging is also intriguing. Jamie makes it clear he’s down for sex, if Nashville-based Tyler is ever in LA.
A couple of months of texts and conversations pass before Tyler gets a gig in LA, modeling for a tattoo magazine. Tyler, mostly raised by his grandparents, is typically a serial monogamist, while Jamie’s rarely slept with the same man twice. That said, Jamie goes along with Tyler’s plan for a real date before they jump into bed. Tyler’s southern gentleman manners are very different for Jamie.
These two really charm one another. What they expected to be a weekend tryst turns out to be more. The chemistry between them is intense, and they agree to continue their long-distance communication. Jamie’s closest friends advise him to keep building his connection and make a trip to visit Tyler. And, it’s just as awesome. Thing is, Jamie’s been raised to believe love is a waste of time, and Tyler’s been hurt before. They’ve agreed to no strings, but they can’t help growing closer, especially as they connect more and more frequently in person.
I loved how sweet this one is. Jamie’s irreverent, but honest. His shameless pursuit of Tyler leaves him feeling oddly vulnerable. It’s contemporary in a big way, all the digital connections and constant posting and looking for adulation from the anonymous masses. Tyler may feel he’s been lucky to make a living off his looks, but Jamie’s always had bigger plans; his blogging is a means to a better life. Tyler and Jamie both have images to maintain, and it’s interesting to see how much thought goes into their work. It felt authentic, and the translation from text, to talk, to in-person interactions was interesting. The conflict was low, and the passion was high. I couldn’t help feeling the bubbles of anticipation whenever they were about to meet after a separation. That’s a whole new experience for Jamie, as is his interest in continuing to see Tyler. Their unexpected romance was fun to experience and the resolution lets the reader know these two made a lasting connection, despite their physical distance.