Review: Tara Lain – Bleu Balls (Balls to the Wall #7)

Author: Tara Lain
Reviewer: Barb
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Genre: Contemporary

Rating: ★★★☆☆ 

Summary:

Double trouble. The McMillan twins, Robin and Bobby, are renowned for their talents—both as fine artists and for thrilling the various men who catch their eyes. As different in style and personality as their DNA is identical, they’re nonetheless best friends who divide and conquer, with Robin doing the serious painting and Bobby adding the sunny salesmanship.

But when their most important client decides Bobby must wield the paintbrush, the brothers revert to childhood tactics and switch places. Then along comes Micah, a handsome doctor who’s attracted to Bobby but invites Robin out to try to please his homophobic brother, and Paolo, the pain-in-the-butt client who thinks he’s wooing Bobby when he’s actually after Robin. Paolo harbors his own hidden pain that weirdly intersects with Robin’s, but pride and privacy conspire to produce what will either be a masterpiece—or end up as Dogs Playing Poker.

Review:

A sweet story of twins who are totally opposite in appearance, and ostensibly in behavior, but inside, the “dark” twin is just as sweet as his cheerful brother, though only a few people ever know that. He’s just had some life experiences at an early age that were negative but unique to him and led him to to have a darker outlook on life than his happy-go-lucky brother.

Dark twin, Robin, is hired to do a lobby mural for a modern building in Laguna, despite his attitude toward architect, Paolo Lind, who rubs him the wrong way from the moment they meet. The caveat is that Paolo wants the good twin, Bobby, to do most of the work, so the twins decide to dye their hair to the same color and pull the old twin switch game since the concept was Robin’s and Robin is the better artist. They are fairly successful in their deception except for the fact that they both find Paolo sexy and both have also just discovered a sexy new family doc—the son of their old favorite, Dr. Brown. Micah Brown has taken over his father’s practice and is crazy about Bobby but asks Robin out instead because he doesn’t think his family will accept the flamboyant Bobby.

Of course, there’s misunderstandings and switches of identities, and true love conquers all for both twins by the end. After all, this is a Tara Lain romance and her sweet personality always shines through. Unfortunately, though I haven’t visited this particular series in over six years, I really haven’t seen any change in her writing style and that disappoints me a bit. She’s still using those one-liner internal thoughts and exclamations that are annoying to read, and even more annoying to listen to on audio. And I really doubt that so many men really spring a boner quite so quickly in such bizarre circumstances in real life, nor do they really think with that appendage quite so frequently. Bottom line – the stories are cutesy but just not remotely realistic, and that sort of writing no longer holds my interest.

So, though this was a sweet story and is in keeping with the theme of others in the series, I personally didn’t care for it as much as I’d hoped. I’m sure others will enjoy it, but for me, it was simply a sweet bit of fluff to enjoy over a holiday weekend.

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