Review: A.M. Arthur – Here For Us (Us #1)

51q9naCgIzLAuthor: A.M. Arthur
Reviewer: Diane
Publisher: Briggs-King Books
Genre: Contemporary

Rating: ★★★★½ 

Summary:

Cris Sable doesn’t walk into popular gay bar Big Dick’s expecting to find more than a casual hookup, so he’s surprised by his instant attraction and intense chemistry with go-go dancer Jake. Jake’s sexy as hell and a firecracker in bed. The sparks between them are undeniable, and what starts as a hookup evolves into something deeper, possibly permanent—until Jake dumps Cris flat on his ass for no good reason.

Angry and confused, Cris finds comfort with his longtime friend and employer Charles “Chet” Greenwood. Cris’s emotional state stirs up Charles’s long-buried feelings for Cris. Feelings he’s denied for eight years, because Cris is his employee and therefore off limits—not to mention two decades younger than Charles. Cris admits he has feelings for Charles, too, but he’s still getting over Jake and both men agree nothing can happen between them while Charles is still Cris’s boss.

Jake Bowden knows he doesn’t have anything to offer a guy. He’s a go-go dancer with no degree and no real career aspirations. He’s also used to everyone who loves him leaving, so it makes sense to cut Cris loose before things get too serious. Cris is kind, passionate and totally deserves a guy like Charles—wealthy, owns a home, successful businessman. Jake can’t compete so why bother? They’re better off together. But when Jake has a serious personal crisis, Cris and Charles unite to pull him back together, and the three men discover it’s possible—maybe even inevitable—to fall in love with more than one person at a time.

Review:

Cris Sable goes to a bar looking for a hookup, but instead finds Jake Bowden, a dancer at Big Dick’s that he not only has great physical chemistry, feels they have the potential to be something more, which is why it hurts so much when Jake dumps him. Charles “Chet” Greenwood is feeling lonely, watching his young stars find the loves of their lives, especially while he has been denying his feelings for Cris since he works for him and Chet also counts him as a friend.

The story is told from Cris, Jake and Chet’s point of view.

I am a fan of A.M. Arthur, if anyone knows my reviews, they know I routinely list A.M. Arthur on my favorites list each year, simply naming the author because I cannot pick just one book each year that is a favorite over the rest! The reason for that is that I love the characters that she writes; they are strong as well as vulnerable, flawed as well as idealistic. Her characters and their stories are well written, layered, never simple but also full of heart and hope as many times the characters have tough lives, a challenging past or both. However, they have not completely given up on hope or humanity and are sometimes finding their own way to make life better for others.

Here For Us is no exception, while navigating a potential ménage relationship. Now, there is an age aspect to this relationship, Chet is 48, Cris is 28 and Jake is 23. For the three characters, the idea of a ménage is not initially on any of their radar, and, in fact, Chet and Jake spend a lot of time assuming which of them is the better match for Cris, while Cris is conflicted by having feelings for both men! I liked the way the author brought the three characters into each other’s lives, and although there had already been physical scenes with Cris and Jake, that was not the main aspect of this story; it was about the three of them getting to know each other and see how they fit together, especially when Jake has a personal crisis that Chet and Cris want to help him with.

As always, the supporting characters are exactly that, very supporting and so well written, you want to be part of this created family! While the back stories for Jake and Chet are pretty clear, Cris is somewhat of a mystery, even by the end of this story. A sequel is planned, The Sound of Us, and perhaps we will get more of Cris’ story to fully appreciate how he became the man he is.

If you are a fan of ménage stories, of the older/younger characters, or a fan of A.M. Arthur, I believe you will enjoy this story. A good balance of drama, sex, some humor and a lot of heart!

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