Reviewed by Morgan
Title: Lovers Leap
Author: J.L. Merrow
Narrator: Mark Steadman
Genre: MM Contemporary
Length: 5 Hours, 13 Minutes
Publisher: Riptide Publishing
Release Date: February 29, 2016
Available at: Amazon and Audible
Add it to your shelf: Goodreads
Blurb: If they looked, would they ever leap?
Good-looking, confident, and doted on by his widowed mum, Michael is used to thinking only of himself. Getting shoved off an Isle of Wight pier by an exasperated ex ought to come as a wake-up call—but then he meets Rufus and he’s right back to letting the little head take charge. Rufus is cute, keen, and gets under Michael’s skin in a disturbing way.
Would-be chef Rufus can’t believe his luck when a dripping wet dream of a man walks out of the sea on his birthday, especially when Michael ends up staying at the family B&B. Life is perfect—at least until Michael has to go home to the mainland.
Rufus can’t leave the island for reasons he’s entirely neglected to mention. And though Michael identifies as bi, breaking his mum’s heart by coming out and having an actual relationship with a guy has never been his plan. With both men determined to keep their secrets, a leap of faith could land them in deep water.
Review: We start the story off with Michael being shoved into the water by his (ex) girlfriend when she asks him to marry her just as he’s breaking up with her. He is rescued by Rufus whose birthday it is – on leap day.
Rufus takes Michael to his family’s B&B to dry off and the two end up gettin’ it on. Michael – who isn’t gay and only a little bi-sexual (his thoughts) really likes Rufus so he runs away – fast.
Rufus is gay and out and working for his folks in their B&B. He doesn’t ever leave his small island home because he thinks his father will freak without him. He’s never had a boyfriend and he’s had very little experience in bed.
In the end, there are several hurdles for these guys to overcome: Can Michael admit he wants a relationship with a man to himself? To his mother? Can Rufus find the strength to chase after what he wants? Will Rufus finally tell his family the truth? What about Liz and Trix?
J.L. Merrow always writes very funny, imperfect characters and gives them unique and yet mundane lives that pull the reader into their story so easily. She’s very British in her writing and it’s like being back in the UK when I read her work. I absolutely loved Rufus, Trix and Liz and for most of the book I despised Michael… he redeemed himself in the end, but it was a close call.
I loved the epilogue and I suppose that saved this book for me, but I do wish we’d gotten to see these two as a couple more. It felt like I got to see all the build up to their relationship but not feel the magic once they connected.
Having Liz and Trix in the story added a delightful mix of characters that was refreshing and funny – thank god Liz was there to clear the air or these families would still be mucking around trying to sort things out!
I was glad I listened to this as an audiobook because the narrator, Mark Steadman, really helped set my frame of mind and immersed me in the story.
Overall this was a funny, sometimes sweet (sometimes frustrating) book and the narrator really added to the “British” experience.
Overall Impression: I really liked it
*I received a copy of this book from the publisher in return for a fair and honest review.*