After spilling coffee all over the hot detective, Alan can’t get the guy out of his mind. Not only was he handsome, there was something about him that pushed all of Alan’s buttons and then some. But Alan hasn’t dated in a long time and being over fifty means he isn’t quite the catch he once was. So Alan faces the very real conundrum of how to break through his own fears of potential rejection, plus his nervousness about screwing up any chance of getting to know Detective Jim Garrison. Now if only there were some way for him to see the guy other than the rare moments at the coffee shop that are just too public and awkward to really strike up any conversation.
I’m just going to begin by saying I loved this story. While I wasn’t thrilled with the manufactured crisis toward the end of the book. I still absolutely enjoyed the chemistry and relationship growth between Alan and Jim. First, I am so glad to see more authors using older MCs in their stories. I also love that they are not body perfect or without a few laugh lines or gray hairs. I think the realism that speaks from these kinds of pairings offers more depth to a story than does one that uses hard and fit bodies and lack of everyday real life problems. In this case, Alan caring for his nephew while his sister is deployed allowed for a pretty clever meet cute moment to move from implausible instant attraction to a series of events that allowed for both these men to really experience a growing interest in learning more about the other.
I have to say that I just laughed out loud at the opening scene where Bryce is brought home by Detective Garrison and poor Alan can’t seem to find his tongue due to the fact that he’s so smitten by the guy. But it was the payoff after Alan and Jim interact that made me smile and delight in the clever way this author had chosen to set up the rest of the novel and bring these two guys together. I can’t say more or it will give an important plot point away and spoil it for future readers, but I can tell you that it was well done and as someone who has raised kids Bryce’s age, the minor extortion scheme it set up was spot on. I also enjoyed the way Alan thought about Bryce’s girlfriend and his complete inability to understand teenagers. His ineptitude added to the comedic vein already in place in the story and also enabled me to forgive Bryce when he inevitably did something really stupid and slightly dangerous.
The only problem I had with the last few chapters of this novel came from the way in which Jim brushed away what happened with Bryce. I felt that given how he reacted to Alan’s initial confession about the scheme Bryce and he had set up, there should have been a bigger reaction to the final action Bryce took. I was a little disappointed, if I’m being honest, over the easy route the author took at the end and yet if I stretched my imagination, I could see it all going down as it did. In the end, while I wasn’t thrilled with the ending, I must say that it barely overshadowed what was a genuinely sweet romance and a lovely slow burn relationship story that featured two guys who deserved their happy ever after.
Accidentally on Purpose by J.M. Snyder will certainly resonate with those who love their romance fairly angst free and with a slightly comedic twist. I enjoyed this novel and look forward to reading more by this author.