Rating: 3 stars
Buy Link:
Amazon | iBooks | Amazon UK
Length: Novel


Teddy didn’t think his life could get worse when his husband wanted to open their marriage, and he didn’t think his life could get worse when his husband wanted to end their marriage, and he knows his life can’t get any worse now that his ex-husband’s family has stolen his business and Teddy has nothing left. His last resort is to move from NYC to his childhood home in Louisiana, and that is the last thing Teddy wants to do. Having one last NYC drink, Teddy meets a gorgeous stranger with a proposition—Teddy can be his fake boyfriend for a week and get paid for the pleasure.

Cole’s family comes from old money, but Cole never felt like he fit in with that family and he wanted nothing to do with the family construction business. Cole moved away and started his own business, VERSTL, which allows viewers and sex workers to form a connection, and not only is Cole the owner, but he is one of the highest-viewed performers. Cole’s persona is carefully crafted and he doesn’t let anyone in, but Cole needs a partner to secure a new business venture and to accompany him to his sister’s wedding. The attraction is real from the start, but Cole has rules to protect himself. But Teddy could be the exception and all of their rules are about to be broken.

This book had my attention at first and I initially liked both Teddy and Cole’s storylines. Teddy loves plants and his horticulture business, but we meet him in the last few minutes that he’s allowed to be in his shop. His business was everything that made him happy and Teddy is devastated. When Teddy meets his BFF for a drink, he meets Cole.

Cole comes from old money and he didn’t want to be a part of the family business. He sees his parents a certain way, but there is some miscommunication happening there on both sides. Cole’s parents have no idea he is a successful business owner or what he now does for a living. He keeps in contact with his sister and she keeps his secret. Cole is now ready to pursue his dream of being a clothing designer and he needs a partner to complete his image.

The more I read, the more this book fractured for me. The book moves both too slow and too fast all at the same time. There is a lot of build up and exposition in the beginning and then the ending left plot lines untouched and unfinished. The blurb states that this book “is the LGBTQIA+ Pretty Woman rom-com fans have been waiting for.” There are certainly Pretty Woman vibes here and even lines from the movie added in as dialogue. However, I did not think this was a comedy at all. Both men are in difficult places in their lives and there are people out to do them harm and there was nothing about this story that said comedy to me. Also, the characters, or the author, or both, don’t seem to like certain groups of people and there is chatter on that throughout the book, which didn’t appeal to me.

The ending was a disappointment. While Teddy and Cole do get their HEA, Cole is shown doing things for their future that are then never discussed with Teddy. But mostly, there is an integral plot line involving Cole’s business that is never concluded; it’s a pivotal part of the book and then it’s just dropped. I felt like this was a book that wanted to be a movie, but as a book, the plot needed more development instead of grand gestures.