Jared, a popular and up and coming director, has recently made the decision to come out with his own #MeToo story. Ten years ago, when he was just starting out, he was drugged and raped by a powerful studio executive. And now, with the help of his lawyer, Aiden Barstock, Jared is suing. Then comes the harassment, the stalking, and the threats. And the bodyguard, Alex.
Wanting a safe place for his client to relax — and somewhere he can easily control all the comings and goings — Alex reaches out to Rowan Carter for the use of his super yacht, the Now Voyager. The privacy, the peace of the ocean, the lack of paparazzi … hopefully it’ll do Jared some good. Until Aiden descends, getting ready to depose Jared for the lawsuit. Now, Alex has two men to keep an eye on.
Aiden has had a crush on Jared for some time. Who wouldn’t? The director is charming, handsome, warm, and giving … but he’s a client. Alex, on the other hand, is tall and dangerous, always challenging Aiden glare for glare. Aiden’s used to casual flings and easy hookups, but nothing about Alex promises to be easy. And with Jared involved, it’s all too easy for Aiden’s heart to get caught up.
Now, Voyager is a cursed ship with a sense of humor. So far the yacht has two marriages to its credit, with a third on the way. Can Voyager work its magic one more time?
Endeavor is the fourth book in the Voyagers series and can be read as a standalone. While other couples make an appearance, none of them play any real role in the plot. The series is, on the whole, a lot of fluff and fun with an emphasis on characters and the relationship, with the romance usually being a quiet simmer in the background. This book, though, puts a greater emphasis on the love story between the three men, with the lawsuit and stalker plot fading quickly into the background.
Alex has retired from the military and entered into the bodyguarding business. He’s been watching Jared for over a year and knows he’s getting too emotionally involved with his client. Not that he thinks that’s likely to be a problem. The last man he was in love with was a buddy in the army, a straight man, who never knew what Alex felt other than the deep friendship the two of them shared. Alex didn’t want to lose that friendship any more than he wants to lose the one he has with Jared. With Aiden, though, it’s different. Aiden pushes his buttons, gets in his face, and more importantly, isn’t a client.
Aiden has also had a crush on Jared for quite some time, but Jared is his client too. Besides, Aiden doesn’t go for emotional attachments; he goes for fun. And fun isn’t what he wants with Jared. Alex, on the other hand … riling him up is fun. Seeing him react is fun. Flirting with him is fun. However, even as the attraction between Alex and Aiden grows, neither of them can — or wants to — forget about Jared. Who is, ostensibly, the reason for everything that’s happening.
Jared, however, feels like the excuse. He’s the soft, emotional figure needing protection. The reason for the two men to come together, as they both want to give Jared the security, friendship, and love he so desperately wants from them. However, Jared, for me, was a bit of a weak link. He was open, willing, and the catalyst to their sexual relationship happening in the first place, but his character doesn’t feel as well developed. And, unfortunately, once the three of them become a throuple, Alex and Aiden lose a bit of their definition and begin to blur together.
The author has a talent for banter, especially in the first two books in the series. Here, however, Alex and Aiden were fine on their own, but every three-way conversation ended up feeling lifeless as everyone had to get their share, and personalities fell aside in favor of the three men falling into bed. I did appreciate the realistic approach to the lawsuit, to the fallout of the relationship between two very public figures, and to Alex having to readjust his duties as he was no longer able to put aside his impartiality as Jared’s bodyguard. However, all in all, this book — while a light, pleasant read — felt too insubstantial, too focused on getting to the sex rather than dealing with the relationship.