Briar has been invited to a wedding where he will have to face the ex that cheated on him for the first time since their breakup. Briar always suffered from low self-esteem and the insecure thoughts he has about showing up alone have his mood plummeting. His best friend, Jude, has always supported Briar and so Briar asks Jude to be his date for the wedding as his fake fiancé, even though Jude has never dated a man before.
Briar and Jude have three months to make a convincing couple and Briar’s friends are fully on board with helping them accomplish this. Jude is fully on board as well, as he encounters surprising feelings towards Briar. Briar has always been attracted to Jude, but kept his thoughts firmly in the direction of friends. When a relationship that started out as fake begins to feel completely real, Briar has to overcome his insecurity and Jude has to tell Briar how he truly feels.
Marry Me starts out Mia Monroe’s new Tattoos and Temptations series with the story of best friends Briar and Jude. It’s an easy read of two men who are already close as friends becoming everything to each other.
Even though it has been two years, the last relationship Briar was in still leaves its mark. Briar thinks he will never find the one for him and, while he has always been attracted to Jude, Jude has never been interested in men. Jude easily goes along with becoming Briar’s fake fiancé and Briar’s friends are also all in on educating Jude on all of the things he needs to know to pass as a gay man.
The beginning of the book sets up the friendship between Briar and Jude and some of their back story. It’s clear to see how the men are close friends and the inevitable passage from friends to more is natural for their relationship. Once Jude looks at Briar as more than a friend, he starts to realize that he has everything he wanted right in front of him, it just looks different than he thought it would.
The first quarter of the book leans heavily to introducing all of Briar’s friends, as well as all of Jude’s friends. It was clear some were being set up for future books, but having so much of it in the beginning of this book slowed down Briar and Jude’s story for me. Briar’s friends are also a big part of Jude’s education in dating a man and many of the conversations felt forced and cliché to me as they moved from one lesson to the next.
Watching the relationship grow between Briar and Jude was the highlight of the book and the chemistry and intimacy between the men is evident. The book is low angst as Jude discovers his love for Briar and Marry Me could be a good choice for a steamy friends to lovers book that sets up a new series revolving around a group of friends in Miami.