Camilo Briggs is a biracial social worker in NYC. He’s been raised by his mom, a Cubana who sought asylum after floating to Florida on a raft. His father, a Jamaican raised in Miami, died when Milo was young. Milo’s fiercely protective of his mother and has a bit of a Disney princess complex—or so his close friends joke. His parents were a love-at-first-sight couple, and his mother still mourns her husband’s passing 24 years later. Milo longs for a man who will make him a priority, be loving and compassionate, and respect his heritage.
Milo meets a dashing older white man at an LGBTQ charity gala. The chemistry between Milo and Tom is beyond magnetic, and the growing desire, fueled by an open bar, leads to a sexy-dirty hook up in the venue’s powder room. Milo isn’t normally so impulsive, and he’s not rewarded for his choice when it turns out Tom is a multimillionaire who has only recently pledged $2 million to a long-desired renovation and expansion project for Milo’s agency, New Beginnings. Tom had been looking to fund a group that serves destitute immigrants and survivors of domestic violence, and New Beginnings was on his short list. He chose the agency before he and Milo met, so it’s a huge, but engaging, coincidence to reconnect. Milo is on high alert for shenanigans, but Tom is both good and decent. This charity project is personal for him, in memory of his aunt who’d been battered. He won’t let his interest in Milo disrupt those plans, and working closely with Milo on the project planning and implementation is a bonus, right? They can get closer, and maybe become more than colleagues.
Tom is used to buying what he wants—and he’s willing to use his money to make the lives of the people he cares for easier. Milo doesn’t want a sugar daddy, however. He finds Tom’s financial overtures to be extreme, and he’s not shy about making his desires clear. He wants Tom, not Tom’s money, and the bond growing between them does signal their increased compatibility—including with Tom’s daughter, Libertad. Milo needs to search his soul in his attempts to mesh his growing affection and desire for a deep love, with being cared for in financial, as well as emotional ways.
This is a sweet and sexy fairytale romance for Milo, whose demeanor is wholly unsettled by the surprises Tom has in store—being biracial Dominican (though very light skinned), a loving father, and a generous and kind-hearted man—on top of his sexiness and enormous wealth. Milo’s afraid he’ll lose his sense of hard work and determination if he lets Tom in too deep. Unfortunately, he’s fallen hard for his prince, and the only way to be true to himself again is to go all the way in.
I chose this book for TBR Pile Week because I read it when it first released more than a year ago, but my life is crazy and I sometimes go from book to book without writing reviews. Then, two other books came out in the American Dreamers series and I read each of those. I really love these stories about bicultural, and sometimes biracial, people navigating the Anglo networks in the U.S. Their stories are so lush, and the author really brings her experiences as a social worker, an immigrant, a person of color, and an “own voices” author to the page. I was a little surprised we hadn’t already reviewed this book, and I was grateful for the chance to re-read the story at my leisure, knowing that I was going to love it thoroughly on the second read.
This review is part of our Reading Challenge Month for TBR Pile Week! Leave a relevant comment below and you will be entered to win one of two great audiobook bundles from Tantor Audio (you can see the details and full event prize list here)! Commenters will also be entered to win our amazing grand prize sponsored by NineStar Press: a Kindle Paperwhite loaded with 50 NineStar Press books! You can get more information on our Challenge Month here (including all the contest rules) and more details on TBR Pile Week here.