Tag Archives: fake boyfriend trope

Loved the idea behind this fake boyfriend reality TV romance

Cowboy Seeks HusbandCowboy Seeks Husband by Leta Blake & Indra Vaughn

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Well, that was a surprise. I loved the idea behind this book, the fakeness of a reality TV show, the idea of two men falling for each other despite the manipulations.

For the most part, it delivered perfectly on the premise and the wee bit of kink that snuck in towards the end as Roan and Walker got fully invested was delicious.

But there were bits where I felt the narrative dropped, if not a clanger, then more of a hiccup in how it dealt with threads brought up earlier.

It’s difficult to highlight them without spoilers though and I don’t want to use tags either as I still think it will work better for the reader if they don’t know in advance.

Almost like you’ve been watching the TV show itself, the plot unfolds in distinct chapters and as it drew closer to the end, I did feel the tension rising.

Surprisingly, it’s only moderate steam, there’s a single sexy encounter during the show filming and the majority of the book is slow burn until the final ten per cent.

I also felt like everything wrapped up a bit quickly and there were threads left open which may be there to kick off another book and turn this into a series, which I’d be down for.

But, as always with both of these authors, there’s some gorgeous emotions, great prose and I was happy with where the epilogue took the characters.

#ARC kindly received from the author in return for an honest and unbiased review.

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Cover Reveal: Blindsided by Eden Finlay

Blindsided | Eden Finlay

Fake Boyfriend #4

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Release Date: March 20, 2019

Cover Design: Kellie Dennis / Book Cover by Design

Goodreads

Blurb

Miller:
When Talon left to play pro ball six years ago, the hole in my chest confused me. I focused my heartache into making my own NFL dreams come true, and by the time I was drafted, the longing I had for my best friend was buried deep.

Now he wants everything to be like it was in college, but we can’t have threesomes and be reckless like we once were. The media storm would be enough to break both our careers.

That’s not my biggest concern though. The torch I had for him burns brighter after so long apart, and there’s nothing I can do about it. Marcus Talon is straight.
I need to stay away from him.

Talon:
Years ago, Miller and I made a pact that we’d win a Super Bowl together. When I’m offered a position on his team in Chicago, I don’t hesitate. I move across the country to chase a dream that’s a decade old.

Only, now that I’m here, he’s avoiding me every chance he gets. If he was anyone else, I’d cut my losses.

But this is Shane Miller—the guy who makes everything better just by existing in my universe. The guy I’d do anything for. The guy who’s more to me than a brother, a friend, or even a teammate.

I’m not going to let him get away.

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Excerpt

“God, I wish I was there,” Miller says. His solemn face fills my phone screen, and I wish he was here too.

“Here?” I croak. “Why?”

Scenarios run through my head of what Miller could do if he were here right now, and not one of them is PG-rated.

“Why do you think? I’m going batshit and my leg is messed up. I wanna be back on the field.”

Ah, he’s still talking about football. Duh.

“I’ll get you there,” I promise.

“You’re really going to spend your off season training me? Shouldn’t you be taking a jersey chaser or two to a sex island?”

I perk up. “There are sex islands? Think we could recondition there?”

“On second thought, I don’t think you should be let loose on a sex island. You’d probably forget to do important things like eat and drink water, and then you’d die of dehydration.

“Like those animals who literally fuck themselves to death?”

“What?” I ask.

“There are these rat-looking things from Australia. The males literally stop eating so they can have sex until they die. Something about their need to keep their gene pool going.”

“I shouldn’t be shocked about your weird knowledge of animal sex, but I am.”

“Just trying to find my spirit animal.” I sigh. “Although lately I’m more like a panda. If I go much longer without sex, I’ll forget how to do it.”

Why my brain thinks that’s a good idea to tell Miller, I have no idea. Maybe I’m fishing for him to agree with me or maybe I want him to know that I’m not fucking around with anyone else. Not that I’m fucking around with him either.

“Aww, how long has it been? A few days? A week?” He smiles but there’s something in it that makes me think he’s gritting his teeth while he does.

“Try months. That night … with you and those two girls. That’s the last time I …” I wave my hand in a you know what I’m trying to say gesture.

“Holy shit, how are you surviving? And what about your pregame ritual?”

“The new calluses on my hands aren’t from throwing footballs.”

Miller cracks up laughing, and something inside me breaks. What it is, I don’t know, but it’s like charging the field at the beginning of a game. It’s a touchdown in the last minute. It’s putting that championship ring on for the first time. It’s … everything.

“Shane,” I say, my voice coarse.

His eyes flick to mine through the small screen, and his laughter dies.

My confession is a whisper. “I chickened out.”

Miller’s brow furrows. “Chickened out of what?”

“This. FaceTiming you.”

Miller looks like he’s trying to decide to mock me or let me off the hook. I beat him to talking so he can do neither.

“I’ve wanted to. You have no idea how much.”

His expression softens. “I think I have a fair idea. I wasn’t calling you on your bluff or taunting you.” He lowers his voice and whispers, “I wanted it. I want this.”

Miller’s gaze burns so hot I expect my phone to overheat. How I’ve never seen him this way before now is confusing, but not really when I dissect it.

I uprooted my whole life for him. Moved to Chicago to be near him. All because I missed what I had with him, which up until recently, I thought was just a solid friendship.

Friends don’t give up what I did just so they can see their college buddy again. That’s illogical. That doesn’t stop me from trying to make sense of it. And to make sense of it, I need to do something I’ve been putting off. For fear of rejection, fear of discovering some unknown truth that’s always been a part of me, I don’t know. But I do know Miller doesn’t scare me. Doing this with Miller doesn’t scare me.

“Take your shirt off,” I rasp.

“Talon—”

“Take. Your. Shirt. Off.”

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About the Author

Eden Finley is an Amazon bestselling author who writes steamy contemporary romances that are full of snark and light-hearted fluff.

She doesn’t take anything too seriously and lives to create an escape from real life for her readers. The ideas always begin with a wackadoodle premise, and she does her best to turn them into romances with heart.

With a short attention span that rivals her five-year-old son’s, she writes multiple different pairings: MM, MMF, and MF.

She’s also an Australian girl and apologises for her Australianisms that sometimes don’t make sense to anyone else.

Connect with Eden

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Amazon Author Page: http://amzn.to/2EV9Roi

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Blindsided E-Book

Release Blitz: A Kiss Before Christmas by AE Ryecart

A Kiss Before Christmas | AE Ryecart

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Cover Artist: Tammy Clark

Genre/s: Contemporary gay romance, Christmas story

Heat Rating: 2 flames

Length: 37,200 approx words

It is a standalone story.

Release Date: 15th November 2018

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Blurb

Christmas is looming and Jack De Lacy needs a solution to one hell of a fix.

Dumped by his boyfriend in favour of his best friend, Jack’s been busy bragging about the hot new man in his life.

A hot new man who doesn’t exist.

With an important function to attend where he’ll come face-to-face with his ex, Jack knows he’ll be a laughing stock when his boasts are exposed as nothing more than wishful thinking. He’s desperate but time, like his options, is running out.

Rory Kincaid is scared he won’t last another night sleeping rough on London’s frozen, snowbound streets. With all the homeless shelters full, Rory seeks refuge in the first empty doorway he stumbles across.

Finding Rory shivering in the sub-zero temperatures, Jack can no more send him away than kick a puppy out into the cold. A shower, shave and hot drink later, and the grubby street kid is transformed into a beautiful young man.

As the attraction between them grows, so does a plan that will get Jack out of the mess he’s in and give Rory a warm, safe home for Christmas. Sweet and adorable, Rory will make a great fake boyfriend for the holidays – the problem is, neither Jack nor Rory is sure where the make-believe ends and the truth begins.

Warning: this 37k novella contains a camp Christmas tree, a drag queen Christmas fairy called Doris, way too many jugs of eggnog, a closet posh boy, and the sweetest Kiss Before Christmas ever.

Excerpt

Jack swung around. “Wait.”

The kid stopped and looked back over his shoulder, his body braced against the buffeting snow.

What am I doing? It was madness, but the feeling that he was kicking a puppy or leaving a kitten in a bag to die, weighed on Jack.

“You can come upstairs and have a have a cup of tea while you wait out the worst of the weather.” What the hell have I just done?

The kid shifted his weight from one already soaked foot to the other. “No, but thanks. I’ve caused you enough bother already. And you gave me some money – thank you. I’ll go—”

“I might be able to run to a sandwich as well.” What next? A bed for the night?

“I don’t know. . .”

“Well, make your mind up, and do it now. I’m not standing out here freezing my bollocks off for much longer. A cup of tea and a sandwich is the offer, and then you’re on your way. Take it or leave it.”

Jack turned and unlocked the door, the warmth from the hallway a welcome caress against his cold skin. It had been a rash offer but a good one on a night like this. Well, the kid had turned it down, so he’d have to take his chances on the streets.

“Yes. Please. If you’re sure?”

Jack looked over his shoulder. The wind had picked up, and huge snowflakes swirled around. Enough snow had already fallen to cover the black-and-white-tiled path, and it wouldn’t be long before there was a whole lot more. Jack jerked his head, and the boy retraced his steps, following Jack inside and up the stairs.

“No offence, but you really smell.” The words tumbled from Jack’s mouth, his nose wrinkling as he closed the door to his top-floor flat. The kid had only just walked over the threshold, but he was already stinking the place out. In the cold, outdoor air, Jack hadn’t smelled the tangy, ripe aroma but up close and in the warm. . . He sniffed and coughed as his throat closed up. Christ, it was horrible. He’d offered food and drink, but a shower was top of the list.

“Sorry, but I’ve run out of my usual cologne, so I’ve had to splash on Eau de Homeless.”

Jack froze, his arms half in, half out of his coat sleeves. He stared down at the stranger, the stinking, smelly stranger he’d let into his home. And what was the kid doing? Giving him lip. Which Jack knew he deserved. He carried on peeling off his coat and hung it on a hook on the wall. Yep, he’d deserved the comeback because he hadn’t been exactly tactful.

“Sorry. That was a bit – well, you know.” Jack glanced at the kid, but the brief flare of spirit had been doused, leaving him as cowering as he had been on the doorstep. “Look, I’ll sort you out a towel and some clean clothes. I’ve got some old clothes I was going to take to the charity shop, but you might as well have them. I’ll get you a spare razor, too.” Old enough for dark scruff to shadow his skin, Jack thought, so maybe not such a kid after all. Jack turned away, then stopped. A vital piece of information had been omitted.

“I’m Jack, by the way. What’s your name?”

“Rory.”

About the Author

I love all kinds of MM romance and gay fiction, but I especially like contemporary stories. Born and raised in London, the city is part of my DNA so I like to set many of my stories in and around present-day London, providing the perfect, metropolitan backdrop to the main action. I write at home, in the gym, in cafés – in fact any place I can find a good coffee!

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Fantastic fake boyfriend follow up in this college series from Lane Hayes

Out in the End Zone CoverOut in the End Zone by Lane Hayes

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Review tomorrow when I’m at the laptop.

Weeee, this was a delight. It overlaps with book one in the series but can still be read as a standalone. I loved Evan and Mitch.

Evan was like a giant puppy, eager but naive and sensitive and, once his past was revealed, it made perfect sense.

Mitch was just a great character, he’s out and proud and happily living his life without complications, but he’s also vulnerable, apart from his grandmother, he’s never been put first as a priority, both his parents essentially abandoning him for their careers.

There’s just a really sweet romance at the heart of this “fake” boyfriends trope when it becomes clear that pretending to have a relationship – so Mitch can use the YouTube videos for his final year project on the impact of social media – not only isn’t a hardship but, for Evan, is becoming the central part of his life.

I will say, Evan also frustrated me for a long time but, once I knew what happened in his past, it became crystal clear why he behaved as he did. It’s not horrible behaviour, so no need to worry there! Just a wee angsting about accepting his bisexuality.

Also, there was a brief bit of plotline which just didn’t seem to go anywhere and, while I got that it was a bit more background to the big reveal later, I think it may have benefitted from a small follow up reference as to whether Evan did anything or not about it. Sorry to be cryptic but it’s a fairly big spoilery type thing!

Even though these guys are college age at just 23, I firmly believed in their Happy Ever After and can quite easily picture them muddling along together for the rest of their lives.

#ARC kindly received from the author in return for an honest and unbiased review

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Release Blitz: Boyfriend Or Bust by Claire Castle

Boyfriend Or Bust by Claire Castle

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Buy Links

Amazon US: https://amzn.to/2KNzMMw

Amazon UK: https://amzn.to/2B6ISUZ

 Length: 73,000 words approx.

 Cover Design: Cate Ashwood Designs

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Blurb

When Carson Turner’s ex-boyfriend unexpectedly invites him to his destination wedding and presumes he’ll be there alone, Carson panics and invents a fake boyfriend to accompany him. That’s what happens when your greatest flaw seems to be to talk first and think later.

How can Sam Bixton say no to his little sister’s request for him to go to Greece with her best friend, who he’s only admired from afar? Who would turn down fun in the sun with the one guy that’s always been off-limits?

Carson and Sam have a lot to learn about each other, and very little time to do it. Will they succeed in convincing Carson’s ex that they’re devoted boyfriends, or is it all about to go bust…

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Claire Castle grew up surrounded by books. She has loved reading for her whole life. Her true love is romance and HEAs.

When she’s not reading or writing, she can be found wearing comfortable leggings, drinking mocha and petting her west highland terrier. She loves collecting awesome mugs and paperbacks of her favorite stories.

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Release Day Blitz: Love Me Louder by Christina Lee

Love Me Louder | Christina Lee

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MM ROMANCE | RELEASE DATE: 29.06.18

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COVER DESIGN: X-Potion Designs

PHOTOGRAPHER: Eric David Battershell

COVER MODEL: Ryan Harmon

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SYNOPSIS

Noah Dixon is damaged goods. After an accident leaves him physically scarred and emotionally vulnerable, dating isn’t in the cards, so he throws himself head-first into his retail job. When he’s obligated to attend his best friend’s engagement party on Fire Island, it dawns on him he’s about to spend yet another weekend feeling totally invisible and alone among a swarm of gorgeous men.

That’s when the idea of an escort comes in.

After Will Crossen was forced to put his theater major on hold in favor of two jobs to tackle his ailing mother’s hospital bills, he tells himself becoming an escort isn’t that big of a deal. It’s just another form of acting, right? He doesn’t expect his newest customer to be the cheery, overconfident sales associate he avoids like the plague at his day job. Talk about awkward.

But what happens on Fire Island stays on Fire Island…especially when a smoldering attraction sparks into flames. Will doesn’t feel so alone anymore, and for the first time, Noah realizes someone is seeing him behind all the scars.

But between their jobs, Will’s massive familial responsibilities, and Noah’s vulnerabilities, they don’t stand a chance unless they find a way to let love speak louder than their demons.

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EXCERPT

Will’s thumb pressed against his bottom lip, making his mouth prickle from the contact. “You could at least pretend you’re into me.”

If only Will knew that Noah was totally into him and fighting his body all the way.

Noah’s tongue slipped out, and he licked the pad of Will’s thumb. He heard the all too authentic groan in the back of Will’s throat, and Noah’s cock stirred to life. Holy shit.

“That’s hot,” Will whispered as he watched Noah’s tongue flick against his skin again.

Encouraged, Noah hollowed his cheeks and sucked Will’s thumb into his mouth. He increased pressure as he circled with his tongue before releasing it with a pop.

He arched an eyebrow. “How was that?”

“Nicely done.” Will’s gaze was hungry, and Noah liked that he could surprise him. “Had you kept going, I would be hard as a fucking stone.”

Damn. Will was so incredibly sexy.

Noah bit his lip and batted his eyelashes. He could play along too.

Will tore his gaze away from his eyes, and as it slid down to his mouth, for a split second Noah thought Will might kiss him. His pulse spiked as he admitted to himself that he would want that. So fucking much.

Noah cleared his throat. “Anybody watching us?”

Will glanced around the party. “Definitely.”

He grinned. “Good.”

Christina Lee Logo

Once upon a time, Christina Lee lived in New York City and was a wardrobe stylist. She spent her days getting in cabs, shopping for photo shoots, eating amazing food, and drinking coffee at her favorite hangouts.

Now she lives in the Midwest with her husband and son—her two favorite guys. She’s been a clinical social worker and a special education teacher. But it wasn’t until she wrote a weekly column for the local newspaper that she realized she could turn the fairy tales inside her head into the reality of writing fiction.

She’s addicted to lip balm, coffee, and kissing. Because everything is better with kissing.
She writes MM Contemporary as well as Adult and New Adult Romance. She believes in happily-ever-afters for all, so reading and writing romance for everybody under the rainbow helps quench her soul.

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Another beautiful love story from Christina Lee

Love Me LouderLove Me Louder by Christina Lee

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This book is just beautiful. It’s a story about love finding its place even in the most unlikely situations.

It’s a book about the depths which hide under a person’s outward surface. It’s a book about hurt and comfort and finding the one other person in the whole world that just gets you.

Noah made a mistake when he was just small, one he still doesn’t understand why, but the aftermath was life-changing. Will is living with his mother, caring for her as she lives with a mental illness which is misunderstood and which costs a lot to treat.

A chance encounter at work leads to Noah finding out about Will’s second job as an escort and the rest, as they say, not only is history but the excellent plot of this romance.

Christina Lee has such a deft hand with this type of narrative, she knows when to throw in a change of pace, how to write seriously sexy – and a little bit spicy – emotional scenes, when to put a bit of angst in.

I loved everything about this book, I just wish it had been a bit longer once they finally got together. There is a sweet epilogue though.

#ARC kindly received from the author in return for an honest and unbiased review.

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