Jude and TJ met years ago in England and had a brief and intense relationship for three weeks until TJ had to return to America. They never forgot each other and no other man has lived up to their feelings for one another other. When Jude, an actor on the rise, is in America, he looks TJ up and the men attempt to rekindle their relationship. But TJ has found success as a romance writer and Jude’s big break hasn’t happened yet and when business and misunderstandings get in the way, their relationship crashes and burns once again. It’s now been 10 months since their attempt at being reunited, TJ is depressed and has extreme writer’s block, and Jude needs an image overhaul and their shared agency sets them up as fake boyfriends. No one knows that they are now fake dating their ex.
But the feelings are still all too real and TJ and Jude have to truly open up to each other to be in the relationship they have wanted for years and there is nothing fake about that.
This book continues TJ and Jude’s story, as their first book, Hopelessly Bromantic, ended sharply with the men not together. There was a big fight and an intense misunderstanding and even though Jude tried to reach out and apologize, TJ wouldn’t take any of his calls. Life has now gone off track for both of them and their agency wants better press for them and now, after everything that has gone down between them, they need to pretend they are in love with each other. The issue is that they are in love with each other, but there is so much they need to sort out.
I like TJ and Jude and the chemistry they have together. Blakely writes great chemistry for her characters and that is always a draw for me. What didn’t really work for me was TJ being a romance writer. TJ writes MM romance and he had a book that took off and his backlist list got fired up and sold and then there is a movie being made and a good part of it sounded like wish fulfillment. The other part was just too much talk in general of TJ being a romance writer. He hasn’t been able to write anything romantic and whenever he says something that sounds good for a story, everyone in his life tells him that line should go into a book. There was so much genre talk and writer talk and it felt like TJ and Jude knew they were in a book and were constantly explaining it and were trying too hard to be cool.
Over the years, the men would also go all in for all the wrong guys, but TJ and Jude were a fit from the start. While they lived in different countries, they kept completely cutting each other off and it made everything so incredibly difficult for them and everyone around them too. The fake relationship was also so choreographed and so staged and I would have liked them to simply carry on with the great chemistry they naturally had. TJ and Jude had all the makings of an epic romance with their great chemistry, but some of the details surrounding them took their story off track for me.