Genre: MM Contemporary Romance, Explicit
Author: Sierra Riley
Release Date: 18 March 2016
“I can’t do this alone.”
Russ Callaghan knew he was going to struggle after his wife’s death. He just never realized how much. As a single dad, he’s tried to balance paying the bills with making time for his son, Ryan. He’s been treading water for a long time and right now, his best friend, Jake, is the only thing keeping him afloat. But when his son needs major surgery, Russ isn’t sure anyone can save him from going under.
“I’d do anything for you. You know that.”
Jake Larson has been in love with Russ since college, but he knows they’ll never be more than friends. Even so, he can’t seem to stop himself from coming to Russ’ rescue. With Russ facing bankruptcy thanks to his terrible insurance, Jake concocts his most desperate plan yet: A sham marriage to get Ryan on his policy.
“You’re the only thing that feels real to me right now.”
It was supposed to be temporary, but when an insurance agent questions the validity of their marriage, Russ and Jake are forced to get a whole lot closer. Jake knows that once their time is up, they’ll go back to being friends regardless of what they’ve shared. But after having Jake as a partner both physically and emotionally, Russ isn’t ready to let go. Can they manage to turn their fake marriage into something real?
What I Liked:
This book contained some of my favorite tropes including a pining character, best friends to lovers, marriage of necessity, and a single father. It was sweet. In fact, it was pure fluff. This is the type of book I would recommend for a day when you’re feeling down, because it’s so light and charming. I liked the characters and their interactions, and the kid character was well written, which is always a nice surprise when it comes to children in romance novels.
What I Didn’t:
While the story was nice and fluffy, it was also super cheesy and unrealistic. The characters do end up getting away with what is essentially insurance fraud, even if they do fall in love. Russ as a bisexual character was a bit frustrating. At the beginning of the book, he’s totally straight, but as the plot develops, it’s revealed that he has been curious about being with Jake since college. He surprised when he realizes his feelings but later acts as if he’s always known about these feelings. Which is it? Have you always known, or did you just figure it out? It’s can’t be both!
Beyond that, Russ’s parents came to accept the relationship super fast for how non-accepting they were set up to be, and the relationship between Jake and Russ escalates a little too quickly to be believable.
This is pure, tooth-rotting fluff, but sometimes, that’s exactly what a person needs to read. I liked the characters and thought they had good chemistry, even if the story was a bit over-the-top. I really appreciate that this is a standalone, because so many romances now are part of a long, drawn-out series. If you’re sad or having a bad day, this is a light, easy read filled with sweetness and, of course, a happily ever after.
My Rating: 3/5