Reviewed by Susan65
Title: Ink & Flowers
Author: J.K. Pendragon
Genre: MM Contemporary
Length: 144 Pages
Publisher: Less Than Three Press
Release Date: June 4, 2014
Available at: Less Than Three Press, Amazon, Barnes & Noble and All Romance eBooks Add it to your shelf: Goodreads
Blurb: About to lose his apartment, and desperate to avoid having to move in with his horrendous relatives, shy art student Luke impulsively agrees to a deal from hell: sex with a man he doesn’t know in exchange for a couch to sleep on.
His new “roommate” Cooper is everything that Luke hates: crude, uncouth and covered in tattoos, not to mention openly gay. Luke has all but resigned himself to a miserable fate when it turns out Cooper might want something a little different than he expected.
Review:A short story that I easily read in one sitting, but felt it was packed with too much going on that it could have easily been turned into a much better novel.
At the beginning, I was convinced that Cooper was some hideous ogre. Luke’s disgust, just from looking him, was so convincing that I had a hard time switching over to the hottie that Cooper really was.
Luke and Cooper both have major issues to work through, and it took the two of them together to start on their path of mutual healing. Luke is a small, quiet, insecure Chinese man who, because of his hideous family, has convinced himself that being gay is gross and disgusting. He hates himself for his attraction to men and denies it to himself. His disgust with himself is transferred to Cooper, who admittedly does come across as a gross, disgusting asshole at first so Luke’s assessment was believable.
Luke is a big, tattooed, gym rat, tattoo artist who is grieving horribly after an accident that killed an innocent girl. He didn’t kill but took the responsibility onto himself and now suffers the consequences in a physical manifestation, i.e. he has trouble in the bedroom.
The two originally meet when Cooper appears to stalk Luke at his flower shop every Friday. It is here that Cooper overhears Luke’s imminent eviction and offers him a place to stay in exchange for sex. Desperation calls for desperate measures and Luke agrees, no matter how grossed out he appears.
Needless to say, that doesn’t work out too well. Unfortunately, Luke spent way too much time crying and whining for me to totally fall for him. Cooper, according to Luke, was a smelly chain smoker who lived in an equally stinking apartment, so he wasn’t much of a prince for me either. The homophobic family members that Luke was running from were absolutely horrible, but sadly I found them to be believable and that’s just wrong on so many levels.
So yeah, a lot happening and not enough pages to get a complete settlement on all the issues. The ending jumped up pretty quickly, and I was left thinking that I missed something. I wasn’t expecting a flowery “I love you” declaration, but I was expecting some closure on more than one issue, but it ends with a happy for now and that will just have to be good enough.
Overall Impression:I liked it
*I received a copy of this book from the publisher in return for a fair and honest review.*