Rating: 3.75 stars
Buy Link:
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Length: Novel

Lucas and Bennett are leaving the city and moving to the suburbs as the newest homeowners on upscale Calumny Court. They recently got married and are looking forward to life in their dream home. They want to fit in with their new neighbors, but being a gay couple in their mid-thirties means they might not have much in common with their judgmental and gossipy neighbors, however the men are determined to fit in.

Also living on the cul-de-sac are college students Skyler and Zachary. They have known each other all their lives, as their mothers are best friends. When Skyler came out in high school, Zach had his back, but Zach was too scared at the time to come out himself. They are both out now and home for summer break and while the chemistry and tension are thick between the two of them, they insist they are only friends. They are a little bored and a lot entitled and a bet seems the perfect way to add some intrigue to their summer. The bet: be the first to seduce one of the new married neighbors.

With Zach never taking responsibility for his actions and Skyler playing mind games, how far will Bennett and Lucas allow themselves to be manipulated to fit in on Calumny Court?

Author B.J. Irons debuts a soap-opera style novel set around an upscale suburban cul-de-sac. You have to go into this book thinking nighttime drama and with the street feeling a little familiar as it plays off of stories that have come before it.

Bennett and Lucas are newly married and, although they had a rough patch in their relationship, they are looking forwarding to their dream home in the suburbs. They are immediately approached by the gossiping and sometimes overbearing neighbors and Lucas and Bennett want to fit in to their new community. They both catch the eyes of college students Skyler and Zach and their move may not be everything they expected.

The book didn’t go as deep into the manipulations as I thought it would based on the description. Skyler and Zach are always in competition with the other, as we learn of their history. Although they are both attracted to each other, their games prevent either of them from thinking they could have a relationship together. Their parents are somewhat stereotypical drama parents, and while they are accepting that their sons are gay, the parents are highly controlling and concerned about appearances above all else. The neighbors have parties and game nights where they invite the cul-de-sac and, while it seems that no one likes each other much, it’s just the thing that is done.

Lucas and Bennett don’t seem to be able to tell anyone no, and wind up in situations they would rather not be in simply to fit in. With POVs from Lucas, Bennett, Skyler, and Zach, we get a good understanding of all of the men and the shift between viewpoints worked well. The book did play out in an expected manner and did get a little slow in some spots, as the overall intrigue was a little dialed down for this type of setting. And, as consequences are not a factor in some soap-style tales, not everything is dealt with.

The Cul-de-Sac starts a new series and the next book features Skyler’s twin sister, Celeste. Check it out for a more reserved nighttime drama style story

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