Andy Motel was tired of living his life to other people’s expectations. He was working a job he hated and had a boyfriend who meant little to him. So when his father died and left Andy a huge inheritance, he took the opportunity to quit his job, end his relationship, and take off around the world. His brothers weren’t so happy, as the four of them opted to spend a year running a hotel together in exchange for a larger chunk of the inheritance, while Andy chose to leave. But for Andy, the chance to restart his life on his own terms was worth it.
Now, Andy is nearing the end of his year-long trip, finishing up in Paris. The city is nothing like Andy hoped, but he does meet an intriguing man one day. The two get caught up in one another and Andy and Leonidas share a passionate encounter. Leonidas is also traveling and is currently residing in Paris before the next leg of his journey. The men take time to enjoy being together, and their chemistry is off the charts. But while Andy is getting ready to return to America and his brothers in Cherry Creek, Leonidas has more traveling planned. As much as both men don’t want things to end, they also know that their connection is meant to be fleeting.
However, when Andy returns home, getting over Leonidas and settling back into normal life isn’t easy. He feels out of touch with his brothers, who have been working together and establishing roots in Cherry Creek for the past year. Andy is depressed and missing Leonidas and is out of sorts, not knowing what is next for him. When Leonidas shows up in Cherry Creek, it could be a chance for the men to take their past encounters and turn them into a lasting relationship. But neither man is meant to stay in once place, and figuring out how to make things work long term between them isn’t easy. But Andy and Leonidas have found something special, and if they work hard, they can find a way to be together.
Limitless is the fifth book in Kate Hawthorne’s Room for Love series, returning us to the small town of Cherry Creek, Colorado (also the site of E.M. Lindsey’s On the Market series). I’m not sure if this fully wraps up Hawthorne’s part of the shared world, but this story does feature the final of the five Motel brothers. Andy has always been an intriguing character, as he is the one brother who did not take their father’s deal for the full inheritance in exchange for living and working Cherry Creek for the year. So while the other brothers have been mainstays in each other’s stories, Andy has remained off page for a lot of the series. So I was really eager to get to know him in this book, and I found him and Leonidas to both be really interesting characters.
The first part of this story has a different tone to the other books, and there is almost a dreamy, languid feel that works very well. It focuses on Leonidas and Andy meeting in France and the early part of their relationship. The men seem to almost exist out of time, to be having this moment where they come together in a passionate rush, before they return to their regular lives. They can’t get enough of each other, and it is all hookups in the rain, and hot Ghost-like pottery making, and bottles of wine in a Parisian garden. I think Hawthorne does a really nice job with this section, as it shows not just the urgency the men feel for each other, but also the sense of this being a temporary break from their real lives. Both men have their own journeys to complete (in Leonidas’ case, it is an actual pilgrimage through France and Spain), and so they know this is it for them.
Once the men separate, however, they realize it isn’t as easy as they thought. The connection is real, and something never man is ready to lose. But it is not just a matter of them reconnecting; it is also both men figuring out how to take their wanderlust and their need to move and explore, and learn how they can craft a relationship that works for them. I appreciated that Hawthorne takes a bit of a non-traditional approach here, but one that very much fits these men.
The stories in this series all feature varying levels of kink, and Andy and Leonidas engage some Dom/sub dynamics. Andy knows he is drawn to control, but he hasn’t really explored it. Leonidas is eager to go there with Andy, and there is some light kink. But I would say this is probably the least developed part of the story for me, and it felt more of an undercurrent than a strong theme in their relationship. So this book is probably the lightest on the kink end of any of them.
Overall, I found this a really enjoyable story and I loved getting Andy’s journey. I think making his book stand out a bit from the others, in both tone and location, fits well with this character. I would have loved a little more time in Cherry Creek as we wrap things up, but as I said, I think it works for Andy and Leonidas. I have really loved following along with this series and this town and loved getting to know all the Motel brothers.