Review: Z. Allora – The Librarian’s Rake

Author: Z. Allora
Reviewer: Natalie
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Genre: MM

Rating: ★★★☆☆ 

Summary: Opposites might attract, but is acting on that attraction wise?

Librarian Tristan Cooper can’t steer clear of sexy, motorcycle-riding bad boy Phillip—the man is hot—but Phillip is bound to find quiet, bookish Tristan boring, like all Tristan’s boyfriends. Tristan yearns to explore his wild side, the part of himself he’s only allowed into his fantasies, and maybe rakish Phillip is just what he needs to feel free.

Sexperienced hairdresser Phillip is more of a believer in happy endings than happily ever afters. Experience has taught him not to hope for more—until he meets sweet, vulnerable Tristan, who seems genuinely interested in his heart. But Phillip can’t trust enough to see himself as a man Tristan might want for more than a night.

With the help of a pair of matchmaking grandfathers, Tristan and Phillip might find the courage to step beyond their comfort zones and discover what has been missing from their lives….
Review: This was a cute, likable novella, especially if you’re looking for a quick mental palate cleanser. When Tristan and Phillip meet at the retirement community where their grandfathers live, they start out becoming friends. It eventually becomes more physical with both still making assumptions that the other won’t want them for more than that. The outcome is kind of predictable and they eventually navigate their lack of communication. The grandfather aspect is pretty minimal but their story could be quite interesting.
I have to say, character development is not very strong and I never understood where Phillip’s issues stemmed from. Tristan was confusing, as a two-year relationship was mentioned but he barely had even vanilla sexual experience, from what I read anyway. The secondary characters, Phillip’s friends, did add some interest. Plot is minimal and I think the aim was for a romantic comedy feel, so it was occasionally amusing. It’s not overwhelmed with sex scenes, by any means, which I appreciated, however, it’s almost insta-love. It’s cleanly written and edited well too. I can recommend as a very light, quick, easy-to-digest read.

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