Book: Rent Mate
Publisher: Pride Publishing
Publication date: May 16, 2017
Length: 260 pages
Reviewed by Meredith
Liam has principles, and sharing a home with a rent boy goes against every one of them. Even a rent boy as alluring as Martin.
Martin ‘Button’ Bailey is a twenty-one-year-old rent boy with an aversion to gay men. Liam West is his reluctant flatmate with an aversion to rent boys. Especially those who go by the name of Martin Bailey.
That suits Martin, because it means there’s no chance of Liam wanting anything more from him than the occasional argument. Sex is never going to be an issue between them because Liam is one-hundred percent straight. He’s also in love with their third flat mate, Katie. Even if that love is painfully unrequited.
While it’s fair to say that Liam can’t stand Martin, he wouldn’t want anything bad to happen to the guy. So when Martin comes home one day covered in bruises, Liam can’t help but show concern. A concern that is quickly batted aside, until the next night when Martin shows up having been half-drowned in the river.
Reason enough to believe someone is out to get him.
As Liam becomes more embroiled in the mess that is Martin’s life, the two men find themselves drawing closer together. And other feelings begin to develop. Unexpected feelings that a budding friendship can’t quite cover.
I’m having difficulty with this review. I think it’s because I had some difficulty with this book. I want to talk about the positives first. I thought the writing was very good. There were moments of great suspense in this story, more of the emotional kind but those are just as fabulous as the action ones. I liked the secondary character Katie. I found her to be genuine, funny, and very down to earth. I was happy with the turnout of her character. I loved the entire idea of this book.
It’s an enemies to lovers no question. I thought it was a GFY and you likely will think that too at first, but it isn’t. That’s all I’m saying about that.
The MC’s… Liam and Martin aka Button. For both I half liked them and half did not. Now, this is where it’s difficult because I don’t know what the author’s intention was so maybe I’m spot on and this is how they wanted me to feel. I was extremely frustrated with them. More so with Martin but Liam was a class A jerk through a lot of this book. For Liam, I found him to be cruel to Martin. Even when I felt things were evening out he’d have this burst of something and say something incredibly hurtful. It was in those moments that I questioned his redemption. I will say he was a very smart character. He picked up on a lot of things and I give him major props for that.
Martin, he made so many bad life choices. Now, I did understand why he chose the life of a rent boy. The world revolves around money, he needed it not for himself and that showed a selflessness about him. Martin endured so much in his life that you will have to wait until pretty much the 90% mark in this book to find out. Yes, seriously. That was a hard sell for me. His life discovery, quick resolution to the “Roy” problem, no follow through on the HUGE confession Martin made and then it just ends.
We spend a tremendous amount of time trying to understand why Martin has done what he has done. Why guilt drives him, why his hatred for sex is a massive issue and then it’s rushed and semi resolved. I want to say that this is an HEA but I’m going to set it more as an HFN. Martin and Liam have a ton of stuff to work through. I didn’t believe their chemistry 100% and there’s serious trust issues that linger.
For me it was a connection issue, a lot that wasn’t resolved, some believability issues in character development, and a rush to the finish. Decent read but not something I was able to flow with.
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