Author: Rian Durant
Publisher: NineStar Press
Summary: Linden has only one thing on his mind a few days away from Christmas—his pending university exams. That is, until he meets his neighbors’ son who has returned for the holidays. Brice Stevens is gorgeous, but he’s insufferable.
It’s Linden’s first love, and he falls hard for Brice, despite Brice’s occasionally aloof and cool behavior. It’s an emotional ride for both of them while Linden takes a crash course in real love and Brice learns to trust in a relationship.
Review: Linden is a university student who is focused on exams until he meets the rich, older, pretty arrogant and obnoxious Brice, the son of Linden’s neighbors. Brice sort of sweeps Linden off his feet but tends to treat him poorly at the same time. It was uncomfortable at times . “Now Brice made him feel like something else – a dog that has to wait for his owner to return to take it for a walk.”
Linden is a virgin and it seemed sometimes that was what Brice wanted – to relieve Linden of that virgin status. Seventeen calls after a fight around Christmas but then “…he tosses you like a used baby wipe.” And treats you as nearly a whore in the bargain.
“What happened to you?”
“You happened,” said Linden evenly. “Your cynicism rubbed on me. Satisfied?”
They have some romantic, tender moments and this gives Linden hope but Brice is so hot and cold (and really, he’s a massive jerk when he’s cold) that it’s difficult for him.
I wanted Linden to stand up for himself more but he is a mass of insecurities with a family that doesn’t really want him. His relationship with “Aunt Jane”, Brice’s mother, is probably the healthiest one he has. Linden does have good friends in Robbie and Jerry but to be honest, they betrayed him more than once in the story and I was irked with them too. No where did it appear that anyone had Linden’s best interests at heart, including Linden.
I will have to say despite the last ditch “make him worthy” effort by Brice, I didn’t like him. I didn’t feel he was worthy of Linden and he was too cruel to him to make me want to forgive him. I was SO hoping it would end up that the “vicious top” Kai would sweep Linden off his feet and I was sad when that didn’t happen. There was definitely not enough groveling, or even a decent explanation, for the way Brice treated Linden and I didn’t buy it. He basically gives one excuse and then sex makes everything ok. There is a whole thing about Asher that wasn’t really addressed. So while I would have given this a 4 for Linden, a 4.5 for Kai and a 2 for Brice, I averaged it out. Readers who enjoy the arrogant type may like Brice more than I did, but he definitely didn’t work for me.