After the Romance Novel, by Susan Laine
A Before… and After Story
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Release Date: February 22, 2017
Rating: 2 out of 5 stars
Romance novels always end with a happy ever after. Right?
Evan and Adam are best friends, but they don’t know everything about each other. For one thing, Adam doesn’t know Evan writes and publishes gay romance novels until he discovers one while snooping on Evan’s laptop.
This revelation changes their relationship in ways neither could’ve imagined. Adam’s reaction to reading Evan’s stories is not what he expected, nor is the new way he’s looking at his lifelong pal. After all, Adam is straight, or so he’s always thought, and that is what Evan believes about Adam as well.
When Evan admits he might be bisexual, Adam suggests he try dating girls to find out for sure, but when Evan follows his advice, Adam is caught off guard by his feelings of jealousy. And when the date proves Evan isn’t bisexual, but gay, Evan’s request that Adam find him a guy might be the last straw.
How can Adam admit he wants that guy to be him? His epiphany will either end their relationship—or change it into something wonderful in their very own friends-to-lovers romance.
Cover Artist: AngstyG
Young Adult/New Adult
Friends to Lovers
On-page sex between minors (17-year-olds)
Welp… I should start this out by saying I am definitely NOT the target audience for this one. The two boys in this book are 17 year old best friends who find themselves discovering their sexual attraction to each other. In an effort to not be overly critical, I think my issue with this book is that it tried to tackle too much in a mere 63 pages. Some of the elements of the story seemed really absurd to me. The book starts with Adam discovering that Evan is a published author of ten queer romances. Upon reading a draft of a book where the two main characters are named Adam and Evan, a confrontation takes place in which Evan admits to thinking he’s pansexual. Later in the book he determines he’s actually gay.
This causes Adam to question his sexuality after realizing he’s attracted to Evan, and jealous of the potential of Evan having a relationship with a guy that isn’t him. Miscommunication occurs, it works itself out fairly quickly and effortlessly and the boys relationship expands to be able to explore sex… with each other… sorry lovemaking (it’s literally in the book) and LOVE… they get to the I love you’s.
I’m not into fairytales, nor do I like on-page sex with minors. I also have read other friend-to-lovers stories, and I think they handled the complexity better.
Like Kathleen Turner’s romance novelist said in the movie Romancing the Stone: I’m a hopeful romantic.
Susan Laine is an award-winning, multi-published author of LGBTQ erotic romance. Susan lives in Finland, where summers are wet and winters long. Thankfully, she’s kept plenty warm by the spark for writing, which kindled when Susan discovered the sizzling hot gay erotic romance genre.
Trained as an anthropologist, Susan’s long-term plan is to become a full-time writer. Susan enjoys hanging out with her sister, two nieces, and friends in movie theaters, bookstores, and parks. Her favorite pastimes include listening to music, watching action flicks, eating chocolate, and doing the dishes while pondering the meaning of life.
Visit Susan’s website at http://www.susan-laine-author.fi/, join her newsletter, or write her an e-mail at susan.laine AT hotmail DOT com.
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I received an advanced copy of this novel in exchange for a fair and honest review.