Review: RJ Scott – Love Happens Anyway

Author: RJ Scott
Reviewer: Lucy
Genre: Mm Holiday

Rating: ★★★★☆ 

Summary: Hiring a boyfriend for Christmas; what can go wrong?

Derek is facing yet another Christmas where his life feels out of control. He has a new career that doesn’t feel like his, and parents who would just love to see him settled down. All he needs is a temporary buffer for the parties he has to attend, and for his parents to leave him alone. Enter, Luke.

Luke is twenty-thousand dollars short for the renovations on Halligans; his family’s bar in New York’s Financial District. A favor for a buddy has him agreeing to play the part of boyfriend to a guy with more money than sense.

But when the spirit of Christmas works its magic on the two men, and they begin to fall for each other, Derek runs scared, and Luke needs space.

It doesn’t matter what obstacles you throw in the way of love, or how much you run in the other direction, because, when you’re least expecting it, whether you want it or not, love happens anyway.
Review: I have to say my immediate thought on seeing this book was that it was one of the most adorable holiday cover ever. After reading it and getting the connection, I can say it is the most adorable holiday cover ever.

Derek is a definite contrast in personality. He acts like a child to his parents sometimes; he is arrogant with people other times; he is a pushover with his friends at times; he is miserable at a job that he loved. He’s a good person and he wants to do well but sometimes he’s just not sure how to go about it. What he does know, however, is that the made up boyfriend, Marcus, that he has been talking up to his parents now has to be made to appear for a lunch. Oh no!

He ends up at a professional date supply place (sounds weird but it made total sense) owned by Alan, a friend of Luke’s. Knowing that Luke desperately needs money for his family’s bar, he sets up Luke to be Marcus. Thirty grand for four dates? So doable! The two of them butt heads right away but while Derek is high strung sometimes, Luke is more laid back and so they fit together pretty well. Derek has definite demands on what he needs – mainly, he needs to show his boyfriend is falling out of love with him and is ready to break it off.

For his part, Luke was injured at work and now has thrown everything into fixing up his family bar, Halligan’s. For that, he needs money and Derek is the way to do that. He’s worried about what his mother and sister will say about the how but he can’t be caught up in that right now. He suffers night terrors and pain from his injury but Luke really is a positive, sweet soul. I liked him immensely and he really is good for Derek.

Derek has to take control of his life and has to start looking at things differently. Luke helps with that, even as they both remind themselves it is a contract, a paid employment. “Now Luke was really getting to me with his whole I know everything routine.” A routine that works well, actually. “Looking good, boyfriend.” It’s what Derek needs.

Both families are awesome (despite Derek’s pouting in the beginning) and Luke’s mom cuffing him on the back of the head made me laugh. Boys. I loved seeing Derek begin to blossom into what he wants to do at work and how Luke helps with this.

The trope of fake boyfriend is one of my favorites and while in this one the coincidences are a little much (firefighter time) I thoroughly enjoyed it, just an all-around feel good.



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