The Husband Gambit by L.A. Witt
My rating: 2 of 5 stars
I have so many feelings about this book. Too many to really list them all, but ultimately, it boils down to this.
When I read a book, I want to escape reality and live in some good romance for a little while. Unfortunately, The Husband Gambit was full of politics--from the arguments of left vs right to rich vs poor, this book was packed. Jesse's homophobic family was horrible; so horrible, in fact, that I found them not quite believable. I get the dad and possibly even the mom characters, but how could his siblings be such static, one-dimensional characters that are only puppets for their father? They were completely unrealistic. That, and the constant punch-to-the-face hammering-the-point-home about Jesse's family completely overshadowed everything else in the book.
The politics and homophobic family in particular, but everything, really, was overly repetitive in the redundant, rambling internal dialogue of Jesse and Hayden. This made for a very slow-moving book, that at times had me wanting to skip ahead to something more interesting.
The worst of it all was the romance. Honestly, I could have dealt with the politics and pacing if there was a slow burning simmer of sexual tension building to keep me interested, but the glacial pace that this author took made me find it difficult to see any chemistry between our heroes at all. Sure, their friendship seemed genuine, due to their easy conversation and affable nature, but I didn't believe that they were falling in love. The sex, itself, was disappointing, because there was no build-up. It seemed to me like they did it out of a sense of convenience--we're both here in this room, both conveniently "hot" guys and horny, let's do it! *Ugh!* So frustrating when something that should read as so climactic ends up being such a dud. Also, why couldn't our author come up with any other descriptive words to describe these two, other than "hot"? After their first meeting, I genuinely forgot what they looked like, and found everything difficult to imagine. "Hot" simply isn't a good enough descriptor.
This is the first book that I've read by L.A. Witt, so I don't know if this is the way this author writes, or if these issues are unique to this title, so I'll probably give them another chance. The plot had so much potential, and I was really looking forward to reading this, but it just didn't work for me.
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Award winning historical romance author, Acquisitions Manager for Pandamoon Publishing, wife, and stay-at-home mom of four. Chocoholic, nerd, & bath bomb enthusiast.