The Librarian’s Rake Review ~ A respite from uber-angsty books … 9 out of 10!

Author: Z. Allora

Release Date: October 25, 2017                                                 Price:  $4.99

Reviewed by Elaine

36315223Cover Art: The cover is crisp and clean, with a beige background.  Two men are in bed; the dark-haired man appears to be sleeping while the blond man is draped over him, kissing his cheek.  There is a pair of glasses at front and center. The title and author’s name are in large font and easily legible. The art accurately depicts Tristan and Phillip, and the glasses are a fun touch.

Synopsis: The synopsis consists of three paragraphs and depicts the book accurately.  The blurb is written in such a way that you can tell it’s going to be a fun book.  There is no warning for adult themes.

Main Characters: Tristan Cooper, librarian

Phillip Valentine, hair stylist

On the outside, rakish Phillip is sexy and confident, everything Tristan wishes that he could be. On the inside, Phillip questions his self-worth, thinking he’s no good except for just a hookup.  Love isn’t for him.  Tristan’s lack of confidence is readily apparent.  Shy, bookish and told he was terrible in bed, Tristan doesn’t think he has what it takes to interest someone as exciting as Phillip.   Z writes in such a way that you can feel their emotions; I especially relate to shy awkward Tristan, and the desire to break out of his shell. She puts you in their heads with Phillip’s fun snark,

Secondary Characters:  Between meddlesome, snarky best friends and matchmaking grandfathers, the secondary characters inject humor, lighthearted camaraderie, and the voice of reason in times of nerves taking over. They make me wish I had them in my circle of friends.

Plot:  The plot is straightforward and simple – can two vulnerable men overcome their fears and find love?  Or will their fears keep them apart?

Flow/Continuity:  The flow is smooth, moving at a comfortable pace. There are no continuity issues to take a reader out of the book or interrupt the flow.

Conflict and Climax:  The rise to the crisis point is slow and steady, and there is not much conflict; there is no angst here for those who don’t like it.

Writing Style:  The story is written in third person with alternating viewpoints.

Editing:  The book is edited very well, there were no issues found at all.

Formatting:  The formatting is spot on.  Easy to read, the chapters are clearly marked. Thoughts are italicized, so it is clear that you are in the characters’ heads.

Conclusion:  Sweet and sassy, Tristan and Phillip drew me in immediately.  Sometimes the most confident appearing individual is the most vulnerable. I’m a sucker for an epilogue, and I feel like we get that in spades, seeing how their relationship progresses several times.  It’s essential to me as a reader to see that growth and of course, get my HEA.  The witty banter is quite fun as well. There are some quite sexy scenes that made me squirm a bit in the best way.  If you are looking for a respite from uber-angsty books to take you to a happy place, this one is for you.

I give this a fun and delightful 9 out of 10.

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