Book: Deeds & Confetti
Series: Mary's Boys #4
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Cover Artist: Angsty G
Publication date: September 27, 2017
Length: 100 pages
Reviewed by Michael
Steven Conley loves the excitement of owning his own Hamburger Mary’s restaurant in Denver, Colorado, and his chosen family of coworkers makes life even better. Steven never regretted leaving the corporate grind behind until his father’s harsh deathbed words leaves him doubting himself.
Ryan Fuller abandoned a lucrative career to start his own party-planning business, but he keeps afloat by coordinating funerals for the local mortuary. When Ryan bumps into Steven—his best friend’s uncle and the man Ryan has secretly crushed on forever—the attraction explodes into a night of passionate abandon for both men.
Steven is blown away by the care and deep connection he feels for the hot young mortician—until Ryan admits who he really is. Reeling from the recent upheaval in his life, Steven must decide whether to give Ryan a chance. To find love, they must risk it all....
At its heart, the Mary’s Boys series has been about the family you make. Many of the characters have felt rejection in one form or another, and have gravitated into this small group of people to form a surrogate family. Given that, it makes perfect sense that the last book in the series would center around the “patriarch” of the “family “, Steven Conley.
Steven left a lucrative and ultimately unfulfilling career in finance to open the local Hamburger Mary’s restaurant, which he now operates with his sister Pat. This decision, and the fact that he is gay, has never sat well with his father. Parents can be unyielding when it comes to their idea of the correct path for their children. This is very much the case with Stevens father, who takes the opportunity in his own deathbed to jab one more dig at Steven. Everyone wants their parent to be supportive of whatever career choices they make, and having a parent, on their deathbed, ridicule you for the choices you make lays the foundation for a serious downward spiral.
Ryan Fuller works at the funeral home where Steven’s father is interned. He also happens to be the best friend of Steven’s nephew, Topher. Significantly younger than Steven, he’s had a crush on the older man for years. Ryan, too, has changed career goals, deciding after college to open a party planning business. He works at the funeral home to supplement his income until the party planning business takes off.
The two meet (or, actually re-meet) at the funeral home. Steven has no idea who Ryan really is, and the two sleep together.
As the story progresses, you find that the parallels between Steven and Ryan are striking. Despite parental objection, both characters decided to go out on their own and do what they feel will make them happy. Steven may be caught in his own web of self-doubt, but in his heart, everything he has done has been about building a family of his own.
Bonus points to Brandon for not dragging Ryan’s secret out for the duration of the book. It easily could have been used to create additional, and honestly unnecessary, angst. Doing so would have not only been a disservice to the book, but also to the series as a whole. This series has relied on its characters personalities to tell the story, not high drama, and it is so much the better because of it. This was an absolutely perfect way to end this series. Even if you haven’t read the other three, this one is well worth your time.
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