This had the potential to be a really good read for me. The sample and the blurb were promising. Elizabeth Mitchell and John O’Brien work for the same company. Beth has had more than an office crush on John, but after finding out that he’s not only taken – he’s gay– she’s not sure what his flirtations were about. After being asked out by John, knowing what she knows, she decides that the best way to handle to situation is… I’ll get back to that in a bit.
Paul Atwater is John’s boyfriend. He’s in his residency as an orthopedic surgeon so you can imagine his schedule is limited. John and Beth’s proposition is something that he’s not sure of, rightfully so, but he’s willing to do whatever it takes to keep John. I’ve read way too many types of this story where there’s a 3rd person to a couple and I felt this was one of them.
I’m not a big fan of workplace romances because I just don’t believe that you should sh*t where you eat, but I was curious about this because the category is one I enjoy. As a secretary, Beth is doing well. She’s from a small Indiana town where a single mother raised her. Wanting to get away from small town minds and mentalities, at 17, Beth makes her escape by moving in with one of her mother’s cousins. There, she was a caretaker to an old and dying man while finishing high school and going on to college. There’s so much promise for a likeable heroine. But I didn’t find her likeable at all. When Beth is first asked out by John, she’s very reluctant. She even temporarily (okay, so she took a day off work) separates herself from the situation to think about what John is offering.
When Beth comes up with her proposal of 9 dates along with the sequence and format with which the dates would happen, my eyes kind of got big. That’s when my ‘oh crap oh crap oh crap’ suspicion began to rear its ugly head, but I was very willing to play along and see where this went. While she’s going over the rules of the dates, Paul who she’s meeting for the first time, behaves like an absolute douche. I can’t really blame him, because if anyone came into my home dictating to me the way Beth did to him – I can’t promise civility and courteous behavior either. As her character progressed, I couldn’t find a reason to like her. There were peeks here and there that I could, but she would say something that would set me right back to ‘can’t stand her’.
Paul is a class A jerk in this, but then again, I didn’t think that he and John were in agreement about having a 3rd person in their relationship. I absolutely thought his bad attitude should have been towards John, because that 3rd person thing should have been worked out long before John asked out Beth. It’s not like it’s even their first or second time having a sexual threesome with a woman so I can’t even say he was anti-sex with a woman; it was the ‘relationship’ part that Paul had a problem with. It’s amazing that after 6 or 10 years (depends on who you’re asking) Paul isn’t sure of his place in John’s affections, so he takes all of that out on Beth. But Beth is in this for John. I wasn’t convinced otherwise, so she’ll do whatever it takes to get her man, even put up with whatever Paul had to dish out.
Then there’s John. I don’t even know what to tell you about John because he was the one who I came away understanding the least about. He seemed to be the fantasy guy for both Paul and Beth, but he also seemed clueless about knowing the people he’s involved with.
For this reader, I don’t find this type of story interesting. For being an educated man, I found Paul to be narrow minded, crude and full of vitriol towards his family; Beth was pretentious and had too many unresolved issues about her mother and lacking father figure, and let me not get started on her negativity towards friendships. If she got that stick out of her butt and realized the majority of people didn’t care what she, John or Paul did behind closed doors, she might have come across a bit more likeable; but she might want to sop having sex in public and having make out sessions during the lunch hour with her ‘gay’ co-worker on a public bench. Tsk, tsk tsk.
Happy Reading Folks!
Click to purchase: Amazon
by Shanyn Hosier
Release Date: September 10, 2012