A charming - but slightly strange - accidental first meeting at a skate park. Opposites attract. And technically...one works for the other one.
Zan has a fast mouth and a lot of technical know-how, so dating hasn't always been easy. He'd set aside any notion of a romantic life to work and spend as much time outdoors as possible. Biking, canoeing, skiing, you name it. He's never tried skateboarding, even though he stops by the skate park near the trail where he bikes to watch boards - and sometimes people - flip, or crash hard.
Instead of skater-watching, Zan meets Deacon. Deacon's odd and interesting, and it turns out, the head of the small indie press of which Zan is a huge fan. Rochester Press puts out the weird and erotic, the dark and mischievous, and finally meeting the head of the press is great. Maybe not so great - Deacon has just hired the printing company Zan works for, and now Zan's in charge of all the new jobs.
It'll be fine.
Except Zan (and his big mouth) immediately asks Deacon out on a date. And Deacon accepts. There's no fraternization clause in Zan's contract, or Deacon's. It should be fine.
A high-heat, quirky novella about two people who would never seek out a date via online platforms or at speed dating. But their weird seems to compliment each other.
+ Their immediate connection
+ Deacon showing the man behind the confidence to Zan
+ Zan showing Deacon he's not as timid as he seems
+ The discussion of safe sex
+ Both of them having a not-so-secret praise kink
+ Their openness and honesty towards each other
+ So many dates
+ (view spoiler) Did not see that coming!
+ Their talk about cheesy romance books, and how they basically lived one (both in their pretend-roleplay and for real, with the cabin in the storm and the kiss on a stage)
+ Both having homes that suit them perfectly. Often, authors make one character live in a home he doesn't really need, to make it easier to shove them into living together by the end of the book. But these men were both established adults, and their homes fit them really well. I hope they kept both homes
+ Head scratches
+ Zan taking the time to help Teny with a different approach to learning his job, instead of trying the same thing over and over again. That was such a character-defining moment, and nobody was there to witness it (except Teny, but Zan basically adopted him anyway)
o I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book. My review remains honest and unbiased
o Zan's father was Leopold Van Alsden. Does that make Zan's full name Zan Van Alsden? Leo, don't give your kids names that make them targets for bullies
- Teny was left hanging. I really thought Zan could do something for him to help him forward, but the poor guy is still stuck
x In Zan's haste to get his clothes off, he'd forgotten the two buttons inside his cowled sweater; the ones meant to keep the ends from flapping in the wind. But now one was snagged in his hair and he was hopelessly stuck. "Save me?" he pleaded, batting his eyes at Deacon through the bottom of his sweater.
These guys were just so much fun together. They laughed a lot, shared enough hobbies to never run out of things to do together, and were honest with each other right from the start. If that isn't a good foundation for a relationship, then I don't know anymore. I just really liked it. Would definitely recommend as a cozy read with no angst.