Rating: 3.75 stars
Buy Link:
Amazon | iBooks | Amazon UK
Length: Novel

 

Ethan Wang is used to bad luck. So when he gets to the airport for his flight home from college for the holidays, he’s not surprised to see his brother’s best friend, Kingsley Sharp, catching the same flight. It wouldn’t be so bad if Kingsley didn’t hate him, and Ethan has spent most of his life avoiding spending time around Kingsley and hiding his crush on him. It’s also just Ethan’s luck that he would end up seated right next to Kingsley and that the plane would have make an emergency landing in the small town of Wintertown.

Kingsley has long been enamored of his best friend’s younger brother; he doesn’t understand why Ethan always avoids him and why all his efforts to get to know the other man have been rebuffed. But he figures that being stuck next to each other on the plane is the best thing to happen to them. At least this way, Ethan can’t avoid him and they can maybe get back on the right foot. Kingsley finally realizes that some sort of misunderstanding must have happened and he needs to set things right.

With the plane grounded and being stuck together in a picturesque winter town for a few days before they can get a flight out, Kingsley and Ethan are finally able to confess their true feelings. It’s not all smooth sailing, and there’s definitely confusion as they sort themselves out. But those few days together allow them to finally see and hear one another, and set them on their path to love and happily ever after.

This book takes a bit of suspension of disbelief, in particular where the plane and its repairs are concerned. But if you can go with that, there’s a sweetness to this story that I really enjoyed. The author uses several classic tropes that fit incredibly well together to great success. That being said, I did finish this book with mixed feelings.

Ethan was under the misconception that Kingsley hated him and it’s colored his perspective of the other man for a lot of years. But despite that, he’s always harbored a pretty intense crush on Kingsley. Ethan’s reactions to Kingsley have been more to protect himself than anything else. Kingsley, for his part, has not conveyed his own interest in Ethan well and the misconception between them has kept them from ever really being friends. The forced proximity of being trapped together changes all of that, and I liked the natural progression of the push and pull of them finding their way to each other. There’s very little angst in this story, and it’s more about two people getting out of their own way, finally being vulnerable and honest with each other, and falling in love.

The author does a nice job of giving enough backstory that it doesn’t feel out of the blue, despite their quick leap to being in love. And Kingsley wants nothing more than to take care of Ethan and show him his heart. Ethan is a little slower to let Kingsley in, and it makes sense as to why. Together, they have good chemistry, and I enjoyed them finally getting together.

Despite that, this book didn’t always work for me. There’s a vagueness to the world and details that I found somewhat unsettling, though objectively I understand why Cox chose to go that route. But the lack of information about the setting and world building didn’t work well for me. There’s a simplicity to the narrative that worked against the story at times, as it felt as if we were barely scratching the surface. I also felt the pacing was a bit off in some places, especially when things got a little repetitive.

Overall, this is a sweet, easy, holiday read, and it definitely leaves you with good feels. But I was  looking for a bit more from the story as a whole. If you’re looking for a feel good holiday read, or are a fan of this author, I would say pick this one up.

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