Rating: 5 stars
Buy Link:
Amazon | iBooks | Amazon UK
Length: Short Story


Hotshot TV director Sam Heaney is in a funk when it comes to love. It has been a while since his last relationship and everything since then has just been fleeting one night stands. It’s so bad, even his friends are starting to notice, but rather than getting roped into a set-up, Sam heads to the local gay bar where he can pick up someone to help him get over the, well, hump. He goes looking for no-strings fun and he finds exactly that: a newly single, still hurting, hot young man looking for an anonymous hookup. Not only is the man easy on the eyes, but he and Sam have great chemistry, both in and out of bed. Unfortunately, Sam only comes to this realization moments before his mystery man makes his excuses and leaves the hotel room and probably his life.

It shouldn’t have been that hard to forget about one amazing night, but that is exactly where Sam finds himself several days later. Even his friends notice and Sam himself is at his wit’s end, until he miraculously bumps into his unforgettable hookup while they are both picking up their canine friends from doggy daycare. When the daycare staff suggest the two dogs have a playdate, Sam is only too eager to get closer. So their anonymous hookup turns into an anonymous extended hookup. Sam is thrilled to get to spend more time with a man he’s coming to see as perfect, but the more they see each other, the more labels including “hookup” and “anonymous” rankle. Sam knows he’s falling hard and fast for a man who might be The One, but Sam also knows he can’t be with someone who doesn’t feel the same.

The Unforgettable Hookup is the second book in the Hookup Duology from author Jax Calder. This short story is a mirror of The Anonymous Hookup, but told from Sam’s perspective instead of Lane’s. Personally, I have long enjoyed the idea of rereading the same story from a different character’s perspective. The Unforgettable Hookup does a fantastic job of recreating the mood, the frivolity, and the sensual connection between Sam and Lane. At the same time, the tone felt distinctly different to me–much less second guessing emotions and much more trepidation about feeling too much for someone who may be emotionally unavailable. All of which means there is a fantastic undertone of angst as Sam falls more in love with Lane and is very much afraid that admitting his feelings will scare Lane off.

While I think this story can work delightfully well as a standalone, I think it would be worthwhile for readers to be familiar with Lane’s side of the story first. There are several elements that dovetail in ways that I thought were extremely satisfying when read in that order. One big example is how Lane knows Sam’s mother independent of Lane’s relationship to Sam. I want to avoid spoilers, so let me just say that Sam’s mom is the crux of a fun “aha!” moment in book one and I think it’s more fun to get the backstory about why that “aha!” is so important to Sam. The development of their physical relationship is also recreated with delightful detail. I loved having Sam’s perspective during these deeply emotional scenes between the characters. They highlighted both how much Sam was falling for Lane and how he wants to respect Lane’s choices about their “status,” but also how he yearns for more.

The Unforgettable Hookup is a phenomenal choice for readers who love tropes about The One, accidentally falling in love, and fate bringing people together. If you like sweet, super steamy stories about two men finding the perfect partner and building a deep connection that starts physical and shifts to emotional, then this is the perfect book for you.