It’s true that Nicholas Osbourne is 69th in line for the throne, but he doesn’t really consider himself royalty, although his family certainly has the ties and the wealth behind it. Nicholas hasn’t found his way in the world and he’s known for trending on social media and getting into all kinds of antics. This time his parents have had enough and, instead of cutting Nicholas off financially, Nicholas is booked onto a reality show doing the jobs of “ordinary folks.” First stop—the Jersey Royal potato farm.
Alex Harmon is always in the dirt and, if he could find a way out, he’d take it. Growing up on a potato farm, he wasn’t ready to have to take it over and be in charge. But when his father’s health means he is unable to run the farm, Alex has no choice. He’s blindsided when a TV crew shows up on the farm and even more stunned when he first lays eyes on Nicholas, who is effortlessly gorgeous and completely out of place on the farm. But Alex’s life is complicated, he’s not out to most of his family, and he knows Nicolas is way out of his league.
Nicholas can’t take his eyes off of the hottest farmer—the hottest man — he has ever seen. Nicholas is terrified to tell his parents he’s gay and he thinks Alex is straight anyway. Alex is way more experienced than Nicholas is and Nicholas is being followed and recorded for hours at a time. But the attraction between them is hot and things aren’t always as they seem and the men may have just found what they have both always needed.
Set within CF White’s Flying into Love series, Jersey Royal follows the pattern of men traveling to find love. The books are set around that theme and this one can be read on its own, although if you are familiar with the author’s standalone book, A Leap of Faith, you will find a fun tie-in.
When I read about the type of character Nicholas is, I wasn’t sure if he would be the stereotypical rich celebrity who is famous for being rich. However, there is a lot more going on with Nicholas. Sure, his parents are wealthy and have supported him and he always knew he had their money to fall back on, but Nicholas is terrified of coming out and being cut off. Image is everything in his family, but still Nicholas always feels like the punchline in every joke and this reality series is designed to highlight that. Because of all of this, he has no experience with men and he can’t figure out a way not to act on his attraction to Alex. Alex would like to be anywhere but the potato farm. He had plans to travel, but now he’s tied to the farm with no way out. He tried to come out and the disaster that turned into it left Alex filled with guilt and a simmering anger.
Alex and Nicholas fall hard and fast and it’s not easy for these men to realize they belong together and to figure out how to be together. Alex has skills few give him credit for and it was rewarding to see them both find their way separately and together. There were parts of the book that were a little slow and almost stalled for me. The people around Nicholas were written to be horrible and, while that point came across, it was sad to see him treated as he was. Also, the timeline of Nicholas getting sent to the reality show didn’t quite line up for me. While some small issues kept it from being a perfect read for me, hanging out with Nicholas and Alex on the island of Jersey is certainly worthy of your time.