Jay Sterling’s company owns several jewelry firms. This is why he’s at a convention for them. Jay’s bored, so he heads to the bar to have a private drink. While there, he meets a very nice man who joins him and they hit it off and talk for awhile. Suddenly, the men are overwhelmed by the urge to kiss. Jay thinks he’s about to have a night of no strings attached, anonymous sex, but his new friend gets a call and has to leave right away.
Jay and his trusted employees are celebrating. They’ve just been given the commission to design and make the wedding rings for a Prince and his fiancée. He’s been convinced to hire a new designer for the occasion. Of course, the prickly young man turns out to have been the man with whom Jay exchanged a kiss at the bar. Also, the young man, Matt Barth, is the son of the owner of one of the firms Jay’s company has taken over.
Matt has all but left the jewelry design business, but he admits having the opportunity to create something special for the Prince and his fiancé is tempting. When he discovers he’ll be working with the man whose company took over his father’s firm, he reluctantly accepts the job and begins working with “Project Palace.” Still, he continues to think about Jay and the kiss they shared, and the attraction he can’t seem to get over.
As the project progresses, Jay and Matt become closer, and Matt is willing to put his anger aside and begin a relationship with Jay. However, thanks to a little sabotage and a misunderstanding, that relationship is threatened. This looks like a job for a Handsome Prince and his boyfriend.
I really enjoyed this book. It’s like a comfort read to me. Boy meets boy. Boy falls for boy. Boy misunderstand boy, and there’s a lovely resolution at the end. Simple, but so good. Romancing the Rough Diamond was a fun read with compelling (and sweet) characters, and it just made me smile.
Both Jay and Matt are good men…no redemption necessary here. Matt’s resentment is, in my opinion, a bit justified. Jay doesn’t seem to understand that until Matt begins to open up to him. Both of them are nicely written and fully fleshed out. Their romance is adorable and sexy, and the banter/dialogue between them feels like real conversations. Nothing feels forced between them or the background characters.
Speaking of background characters, they fit in the story seamlessly. Everyone on “Project Palace” is a trusted employee, and they’re actually friends. They’re just as excited about this opportunity as Jay and Matt. There is a surprising betrayal that rocks the team, but they remain a close unit and carry the project through until the royal wedding.
There is a bit of conflict in the story and the author’s simple, but skilled, writing makes it feel traumatic enough (one of the MCs does something very out of character), but the resolution is ultimately romantic and adorable. I’d love to tell you about it, but it’s so delightful, I think it should be read to get the fun and full effect.
The ending of Romancing the Rough Diamond ties up neatly, and it’s exactly as expected, but that doesn’t make it any less wonderful. I am still thinking about Jay and Matt, even though I finished the book three days ago. I can’t recommend this book enough. It’s charming, it’s sweet, and it’s a terrific way to spend an evening.
A review copy of this book was provided by Dreamspinner Press.