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Review ❤️ Boyfriend Material by Alexis Hall

July 9, 2020

boyfriend-material-alexis-hall

Wanted:
One (fake) boyfriend
Practically perfect in every way

Luc O’Donnell is tangentially—and reluctantly—famous. His rock star parents split when he was young, and the father he’s never met spent the next twenty years cruising in and out of rehab. Now that his dad’s making a comeback, Luc’s back in the public eye, and one compromising photo is enough to ruin everything.

To clean up his image, Luc has to find a nice, normal relationship…and Oliver Blackwood is as nice and normal as they come. He’s a barrister, an ethical vegetarian, and he’s never inspired a moment of scandal in his life. In other words: perfect boyfriend material. Unfortunately apart from being gay, single, and really, really in need of a date for a big event, Luc and Oliver have nothing in common. So they strike a deal to be publicity-friendly (fake) boyfriends until the dust has settled. Then they can go their separate ways and pretend it never happened.

But the thing about fake-dating is that it can feel a lot like real-dating. And that’s when you get used to someone. Start falling for them. Don’t ever want to let them go.


Release Date: Jul 7, 2020
Heat Level: Sensual
Publisher: Sourcebooks
Imprint: Casablanca
Price: $8.99


 

It’s like Bridget Jones turned into a man, except more neurotic and hopeless when it comes to love… le sigh!

Lucien O’Donnell couldn’t keep a boyfriend if he tried. Bad enough he’s the son of two musician’s way past their glory days, but still enough famous that one step wrong and his picture lands in the paper or an article is written online. When a damning photo, taken out of context, puts the charity he works for in the spotlight (the wrong way), Luc is forced to go on the hunt for a boyfriend if he wants to keep the only job that will hire him.

My impression of Luc lay in a healthy dose of empathy because though Luc has never gone without food or shelter, his parent’s presence in his life (lack of a father figure) has left him vulnerable and then a relationship turned bad made things worse. Trust issues are at the top of the list, followed by his lack of drive – I mean he works for a non-profit hell-bent on saving the dung beetle and they are called CRAPP. Luc himself constantly states he has low standards and that made my heart ache. When his friend Bridget *scratches head* says she has the perfect possible boyfriend, Luc jumps on it, reluctantly.

Cue entrance of barrister Oliver Blackwood. He sounds positively stiff and proper, and he is (squee) Oliver has had similar relationship issues, he’s not sure why, but it’s always him. He’s not good enough for some reason. Him and Luc on date seems fine enough, but I quickly discovered these two are like oil and water, nothing in common besides some attraction. Oliver has a V-cut *fans self*. Though they share no common interests, Oliver and Luc quickly become engaged in the art of faking it.

That’s what this whole book is about, a fake relationship which is a cat-nip trope that sucks me in often against my will. The story is told solely in Luc’s point of view. No thoughts from Oliver except what he confesses to. At times I felt like Luc broke the fourth as well. This budding romance comes with plenty of drama, tension, and sweet moments that made me wonder how the hell Oliver is still single. A topic that Luc contemplates a lot.

As far as tension, there is a lot, stemming around Luc and Olive learning their environments, how to be around each other and navigating a fake relationship without kissing or sex. Luc’s not very good at this by the way because he has constantly assuaged his need for connection with meaningless one-night stands. While are uptight Oliver wants things to mean something before, he just takes a romp in the hay. Once this hurdle is passed it’s all sweet, delicious romantic satisfaction, but this is like getting in the bedroom door only to be kicked out once the action gets going.

While both heroes have tons of baggage, watching them fall for each other bit-by-bit involved plenty sighing and quick page turns. I was emotionally engaged enough to keep going even when Luc got a little long-windy about describing things around him or acting over-the-top with theatrics. Luc does get wordy and tends to overthink things.

Overall, if you want a nice read to get lost in, a slow burn story about something fake becoming all-too-real, then Boyfriend Material is definitely for you. I would also recommend this book to readers who haven’t take the plunge into M/M romance. This one isn’t super vulgar or spicy as far as the intimate scenes go, so if you were wanting to dip your toe into the genre you can’t wrong starting with this one.

~ Landra

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