The Backup Boyfriend by River JaymesThe Backup Boyfriend by River Jaymes

Published by: Amazon Digital Services

Format: Kindle Edition

Genre: M/M Romance

Reviewed by: Judith

Will a hot doctor and his sweaty mechanic ever get their acts together to turn a fake relationship into something real? Heck YEAH and it is hot hot HOT!

Plot: Professionally, Dr. Alec Johnson has almost reached his goals. As this year’s recipient of a humanitarian award with his ex, Dr. Tyler Hall, Alec’s work with the homeless is about to be recognized. Unfortunately, his personal life sucks because now he has to attend several events alongside Tyler—with his ex’s new boyfriend in tow. In an attempt to lift his mood and break out of his rut, Alec purchases a motorcycle he has no idea how to start.

Dylan Booth doesn’t have time for Dr. Clueless and his fickle 1964 Harley, but the cocky mechanic can’t say no to the request for help. Having spent his teen years on the streets, and losing his best friend to HIV, Dylan decides teaching the do-gooder how to ride is the least he can do. But watching Alec flounder in his ex’s company throws Dylan into protector mode, and the confirmed hetero introduces himself as Alec’s new boyfriend.

The ex suspects Dylan is lying. Alec claims Dylan’s plan is insane. And Dylan’s not sure he can fake being gay.

But Dylan’s a master bullshitter, and the phony PDA soon turns ultra-hot. Alec can’t afford to get attached, and Dylan’s learned everyone eventually leaves. Unfortunately, playing the backup boyfriend is starting to feel way too real…

Review: Whenever I need a pick-me-up after a bad day or something scorchingly steamy and risque to get the old engine revved or even just a plain good love story that doesn’t have any melo-drama or dumb hangups, I pick up The Backup Boyfriend. I’ve read it at least 5 times now and it never fails to disappoint. To whit, this is one fine romance.

Dylan is your typical macho man: he likes fast women, no strings, and working on greasy machines. Alec is his total opposite: he’s gay, wants a committed monogamous relationship with someone he can trust, and has dedicated his life to helping those less fortunate. When Alec’s longtime boyfriend dumps him, he lashes out by buying himself a motorcycle. A mutual friend puts him in contact with motorcycle mechanic, Dylan, and a tentative friendship blooms between them over beer and shop talk. Their relationship builds slowly over time and finally morphs into something more. Only problem is Dylan can’t reconcile his attraction to Alec with the idea that he typically desires women. He also can’t force himself into committing to just one person regardless of gender. Will their mutual attraction and easy friendship be enough to surpass any obstacle?  [spoiler spoiler] Of course! And it is oh so awesome!

River Jaymes does a great job at detailing the push and pull of attraction for Dylan. Usually I’m not a fan of the ‘gay for you’ trope as I think it’s unfair to assume that everyone has the ability to romantically love someone regardless of gender. I mean, genitals are involved there and sometimes you just don’t like what the other person’s packing. But here it is done so well that you really see the war Dylan fights within himself in order to come to terms with his attraction to another man. Once he makes the choice to follow that attraction through to its conclusion, he does so with no problem. Oh no, his only hang up is commitment and it is painful to watch Alec deal with the brunt of it. At times I felt like Alec let himself get pushed around too much by Dylan and his intractable ideas about love and commitment. Alec didn’t voice issues that needed to be stated aloud and he also let the hanky panky cloud his judgment way too often. But! This was a solid love story and all works out well in the end so any character pet peeves that are there, just make these two seem more human.

It’s well written, well paced, and well deserving of a 9/10.

How much did I like the hero: 8. For all his sweetness and desire to change himself with a motorcycle, Alec is a bit of a pushover. Dylan is clearly the stronger of the two and he runs the show. I prefer for protagonists to have a bit more oompf in their personalities but what he lacks in conviction, he makes up for in his fumbling shy sexuality. Watching him woo Dylan is hilariously sweet and will have you fanning yourself.

How much did I like the love interest: 9. Dylan is a man’s man and he acts like it. He’s tough and stubborn and not willing to change for anybody.  I love his ability to rethink his own sexuality though and that made him a thoroughly likable character for me.  Plus he’s always dirty and sweaty which equates to one sexy man.

How believable is the plot:  10.  Everybody has been in the situation where he wants to prove something to an ex and we’ve all wanted to show him/her up with someone even hotter. Dylan pretending to be Alec’s boyfriend and that leading to something more is 100% believable. 

How much did I like the writing style/editing/etc: 10. River Jaymes just gets it. She writes clearly and concisely plus her sexy scenes are oh-my-goodness-fan-yourself-scorching-hot!

How much did I want to keep reading: 10. What’s going to happen to these two after they decide to make a real relationship out of it? Will Dylan be able to handle PDA in public? Will he still find Alec attractive? Will he be able to reconcile his past with his present? MORE!

Final Score: 9/10.  Great romance, great analysis of turning something imaginary into something real, and a really great read you’ll possibly enjoy as often as I have.

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