Audio Review: Lane Hayes – Better Than Friends (Better Than #3)

Author: Lane Hayes
Reviewer: Sandra
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Genre: Contemporary

Rating: ★★★☆☆ 

Narrator: Tyler Stevens


When Curt Townsend, a successful young DC lawyer, attends his first gay wedding, he doesn’t expect anything more than a great evening out spent celebrating two lucky guys willing to commit to one another. He certainly doesn’t anticipate meeting someone like Jack Farinelli. Fourteen years Curt’s senior, Jack owns two businesses: a gay bar and a motorcycle shop. He’s gorgeous and self-assured, but Curt is positive they have nothing in common.

Jack is comfortable in his own skin. He’s attracted to Curt’s quick wit and easy manner but most of all, to their unexpected mutual love of baseball. As they forge a friendship based on their shared enthusiasm for the sport, they begin a journey which reveals how their differences might be the catalyst behind a growing attraction. Both men have experienced their share of pain, but they realize they need to set aside the past and learn to trust in a future if they are to have one together.


This was a solid 3 stars read (and listen) for me. I started it immediately after book 2, Better Than Chance, but quickly realized with the same narrator that I was hearing Jay instead of Curt, and hearing Peter instead of Jack. So I took a week or two off to get their voices out of my head and then re-started this anew.

It runs a similar course to book 2, Curt (Jay) is insecure and first assumes Jack (Peter) is straight, then when he finds out that he’s gay assumes he’d never be interested in him, then when he finds out he is interested in him figures he could never want anything serious! *eye roll* So all the “what could he possibly see in me?!” got a bit tired when Jack was obviously wanting to bone him constantly.

But I really liked their shared interest in baseball. So many times in these romance novels it’s difficult to see why two people are interested in each other beyond basic attraction, but their shared interest really showed through. It was fun seeing them hang out and watch games and do things that actual friends would do, and made me believe their connection more than I otherwise would have.

I did not love the Paul addition, seeing as how it was purely and obviously a catalyst to create some jealousy and show the readers that Jack really does care. This is a personal thing but I think 3 dates is fine, past that if you know you’re not interested, it’s kinda messed up to keep dating someone. So when Curt would say “I couldn’t think of a reason to say no”, I lost a lot of respect for him as an adult male.

Just like book 2 I started to get a little bored in combination with life occurring and put the book down when I inadvertently had 1-2 chapters left. So this ruined the flow a bit, but I presume this meant it was drag and needed to be wrapped up. Like book 2 we had a silly miscommunication at the end which then precipitated the final relationship progression plus an epilogue for follow up. My personal preference is to get a solid relationship earlier so I can enjoy their bliss, as opposed to it being the final climax of the book.

That being said, this is an enjoyable series and for me certainly works well as an audio so that I can more easily flow in and out of the story as time allows. Not an all time favorite but if you’ve liked other things by Lane Hayes then I’m sure you’ll enjoy this. Book 1 in the series, Better Than Good, is definitely still my favorite.


Dreamspinner Press 

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