Review: Shawn Lane – The Gift of Casey

caseyAuthor: Shawn Lane
Reviewer: Lucy
Publisher: JMS Books
Genre: MM Holiday

Rating: ★★★☆☆ 

Summary: Casey Mackenzie unexpectedly finds himself in need of a “boyfriend” for his Thanksgiving dinner. For several months, Casey has been putting off family questions and invites with talk of his boyfriend “George.” Only now they actually expect to meet George at the holiday dinner.

George Accardo is Casey’s sexy neighbor who also happens to be an actor Casey once had a rather drunken rendezvous with. Casey has avoided George ever since. Until now.

Casey offers George fifty bucks to pretend to be his boyfriend for the duration of the Thanksgiving dinner. George has been intrigued by Casey since their first meeting but gave him space when Casey freaked. He accepts the job, though Casey assures him they will “break up” before Christmas.

Casey finds himself still charmed by George as Christmas approaches. Can George convince Casey he’s the gift he’s been hoping for before the holiday arrives?
Review: When the book began, it is a discussion between Casey and his best friend, Andrew. Drew has just broken up with his boyfriend and Casey has admitted that he has nicknames (none positive) for all Drew’s former flames. As I was reading, I thought for sure that Casey and Drew would end up together somehow. They fit, to the point where Casey had invented a boyfriend, George, to get his sister off his case about who he was longing for. Which was Drew. So this was a great set up to a friends to lovers with two nice guys.
Except that isn’t what this is. All the set up with Drew is sort of superfluous, because the actual basis for George is Casey’s neighbor, named, well, George. Casey and George had a one off and Casey has avoided George since. So it really took nerve for him to go ask George to pretend to be his boyfriend in front of Drew and his sister so that Casey doesn’t look like an idiot. It was odd that Casey thought Drew would forget Casey has a boyfriend, even though they had supposedly been dating and Drew hadn’t met him yet. But Casey offers fifty bucks for George to be his squeeze for Thanksgiving dinner and then they will conveniently “break up” before Christmas.
George does a good job at dinner and questions why Casey hasn’t yet been to bed with Drew, even as the two begin a little friends to romance of their own. Sex is involved but I admit, I was not wowed by the sex scenes at all. Perhaps because I didn’t feel the chemistry between Casey and George. It was more like George was available and the ghost of the Drew crush hung over all. There was just something missing with George.
This wasn’t a bad book but it was forgettable for the most part. I know I’m harping on it, but I think it would have been a better romance if Casey had actually gone after Drew.

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