Landry Bishop shook the dust off his small town upbringing in Peril, where he was always the odd one out, to embrace life in California and pursue his dream of helping others in fashion, food, and interior design. Now more popular than ever, Landry wonders if he’s somehow lost who he really is and the simple dreams he once had. Before his husband passed away, there was always someone to guide Landry—to ground him and push him to be bigger and better in everything he chose to pursue. Now with his personal assistant retiring, Landry is fearful he will be so adrift he may just get lost.
When bright and cheerful Jordan Stryker enters Landry’s life as his new PA, not only does Landry’s libido perk up, but the growing realization of how alone he has felt comes front and center. But Jordan is more than just a pretty face; he is also a voice of reason, constantly but gently questioning why Landry is still pursuing the fame that no longer seems to bring him happiness. Landry doesn’t really have a good answer to that, but he what he does know is that the attraction he feels for Jordan is quickly taking first place in his life.
Jordan has made a lot of mistakes in his life, but one thing is clear to him—he loves helping people. Caring for someone and making them happy is the best thing Jordan can do and when he meets Landry and becomes his assistant, Jordan is determined to give it his best shot. All too quickly Jordan begins to realize that Landry is not just a job, but someone who attracts him unlike any other person ever has. Now all Jordan must do is break down the wall Landry has built around his heart and make the man he is falling for the happiest guy in town.
Redesigning Landry Bishop by Kim Fielding is another great example of the skill this author has in creating approachable and likable characters in whom you quickly find yourself emotionally investing. Landry’s loneliness was very real and while it may have been a bit difficult to relate to his privileged sense of ennui about all the lucrative career choices he was being offered and how conflicted he was about them, Landry was still someone who tugged at my heartstrings. But it was Jordan who really stole the show for me. He was just genuinely a nice guy—one who had no ulterior motives or hid any earth-shattering secrets, but instead had simply made his goal in life to make other people happy. I loved how the author had Landry begin to score the smiles that Jordan offered up when something made him joyful. These two men together were really quite adorable and you could sense the rightness in their union and the chemistry growing between them.
I think the place the story kind of fell apart for me was Landry’s reluctance to visit his family and home town of Peril. I got absolutely no sense that he was anything other than loved and welcomed in Peril and all the buildup and angst over reading his sister’s emails and avoiding returning to his roots seemed to be a lot of drama that had no foundation to it. Because there was such a focus on that particular plot point, when it seemed to go nowhere and have no meat to it, the story suffered. Suddenly, Landry was more of a ‘drama queen’ than someone who may have carried some sort of scars from a traumatic childhood.
Redesigning Landry Bishop had a lot going for it—interesting and well-developed characters, a story that kept me invested, and a lovely romance that felt genuine. In many ways this was a wonderful story that I enjoyed.
A review copy of this book was provided by Dreamspinner Press.