Release Date: March 25th
I liked this story a whole lot. I liked the characters. I liked that Anders and Ethan, who didn’t get their happy in the first installment, found each other in this one. And I liked the writing so much. Earlier books by Johnson that I’ve read have had this almost poetic feel to them. The For Him books aren’t like that, but still, sometimes that same style shone through which made me smile every time.
The story started off with Anders and Ethan meeting for the first time – and not under the best circumstances. Ethan thinks Anders is an entitled, uptight prick, and Anders thinks Ethan is rude and judgmental. Then the story jumps ahead a few months and Ethan ends up temporarily working as Anders’ assistant at his publishing firm, all thanks to Wilder’s scheming.
This first part of the story, where Ethan’s and Anders’ relationship starts evolving from a purely professional one to a tentative friendship, was probably what I struggled the most with. To me, it didn’t feel entirely organic but a bit forced. What with Ethan who’s desperate for a job, gets hired by Anders, and then starts sending slightly obnoxious (and unprofessional) e-mails to his new boss.
When their new friendship was more established, though, the rest of the story ran way more smoothly. It was such hopeful reading. These two characters who both had been let down in the past, but eventually found their way to each other. It was sweet, and slightly melancholy, but with the best ending.
And there were sexytimes! *me like*
In this story, much the same as in the previous installment, one of the characters were cut off from his family because of religion. And it just makes me so sad. Because I can only assume that, since this is a recurring theme, this is actually a real thing that happens. As fucked up and medieval it sounds to me as a Scandinavian, it’s apparently still a thing in the US in 2021. A bloody tragedy is what it is.
However, I kept comparing this read to Love Always, Wild, and neither Anders nor Ethan could really compare to Wilder somehow. He was just fabulous, so of course that’s tough to compete with. 🙂
Anyway. This read is a solid 4-star that I can strongly recommend to those who love M/M romance with depth.
* A free copy of this book was kindly provided by the author *