When Thom attends Pride with his friends, he doesn’t expect to find a small cat in need of help or to be swept away by the handsome vet who comes to her aid. After all, thanks to his Crohn’s disease and the six cats he already has at home, Thom doesn’t exactly consider himself a catch and he’s too used to people running when the more realistic aspects of his condition make themselves known. But Dean seems different and any man who helps rescue a cat has to be worth a date or two.
Dean is a year out from his amicable divorce and finally ready to start exploring his bisexuality. He was with his wife for 15 years so it’s been an adjustment, but Thom’s sweetness and love for animals is pretty irresistible. They definitely connect, but for Thom the hardships of his disease are always right around the corner and learning to trust Dean might be harder than either of them expected.
I’ve been a fan of Kaje Harper’s for a long time now and I’m always eager when another book by this author hits the market. So I was pretty excited when I grabbed Love and Lint Rollers for review. It has Harper’s signature smooth and relaxed writing style, which is a particular favorite of mine, as well as an overall sweetness that will probably appeal to a lot of readers. I also appreciated the realistic nature of Thom’s condition. Like most chronic diseases, it isn’t fun, sexy, or magically curable. It can be brutal and unkind and Harper goes a good job of incorporating this into the story, without trying to soften the edges of it. Love and Lint Rollers also has a rather unlikable MC and a couple with so little romantic chemistry, I wondered at times if they were even dating.
Thom has a huge chip on his shoulder about his disease and while I was sympathetic for him up to a point, I found his constant assumptions about how other people would react, what they might want, or how they might view him to be rather off putting. I appreciate that bad experiences helped to form these defense mechanisms, but he really went overboard with them. He slaps his baggage onto Dean almost right away and never gives the man an even chance except towards the end.
I felt that Dean and Thom had zero chemistry and while part of this stemmed from the fact I wasn’t overly fond Thom, there also wasn’t any emotional click between these two. Their moments in bed read as a functional and almost passionless. It almost felt like Thom was letting Dean use him for “practice” without investing anything emotional into their relationship. Even their dates seem stiff and awkward and there just isn’t any spark or even a warm easiness between these two to make them seem like a good fit.
I wanted to like Love and Lint Rollers a lot more than I did. It’s definitely well written and filled with lots of adorable cat fluffiness. But Thom really didn’t work for me an MC and he failed to connect with Dean either sexually or emotionally. That said, I still think there’s a lot to like here for readers and I think most fans of Kaje Harper will enjoy this one. It just didn’t fully work for me.