Title: Nothing Serious
Author: Jay Northcote
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Length: 158 pages
Rating: B List
Blurb: Mark O’Brien is finally being honest with himself. His relationship with Rachel is over and he’s moving out of the home they’ve shared for six years. They get along, but he can’t fix a relationship when the person he’s with is the wrong gender.
Jamie Robertson, one of the removal men, is huge and ridiculously gorgeous, and Mark is smitten at first sight. When a cardboard box splits, revealing items of a personal nature that Mark never wanted anybody to see, he’s mortified. But it sparks the start of a beautiful friendship with benefits.
As Jamie initiates Mark into the joys of gay sex, the two men get increasingly close and “nothing serious” turns into something rather important to both of them. But communication isn’t their strong point. Will either man ever find the courage to be honest about his feelings?
Review: This was a delightful read. Fun, sweet, and full of sexual exploration with humor sprinkled throughout. With almost no angst, it made for a light and very enjoyable read. I really liked their sexy meet cute and the air of innocence to the very sexual relationship.
Mark is a good guy – he listens more than he talks, good friend, helpful, reliable, stable job, calls his mum regularly, and very presentable. Social and family pressure (good Irish Catholic is that mum) and a lifetime of serial monogamy have allowed him to bury his sexuality. I loved that he didn’t have some tawdry affair to come out, but rather reached a place within himself where he knew that he had to stop lying. It wasn’t fair to anyone and he wasn’t really living. So he sat the live in girlfriend down and told her the truth. Which was amazingly brave, they had been together since college and she was his best friend, unfortunately that’s all she could ever really be for him, and that’s why he had to tell her.
Jamie is adorable. He has an easy confidence and charm that not even his struggles with school could hinder. He is sweet and open, caring and exuberant, with a strong relationship with his close knit family. Tall and brawny, he is all of Mark’s sexual fantasies rolled into one large, kind and generous package. He has always known that he was gay and his family is very accepting. He came out in high school, in a way that was so very Jamie, and has never looked back or questioned it. He is very sympathetic to Mark’s situation and he never judges or expects Mark to be anything other than exactly who he is.
Jamie’s patience with Mark’s inexperience and the ways that he introduces Mark to gay sex are steaming hot. He was Mark’s first time doing almost anything with a man and he took things slow and at Mark’s pace, never rushing or pushing, never demanding or condescending. It was kind of beautiful.
While Mark might be older, twenty-nine to Jamie’s twenty-two, and more confident in many ways there is a youthful aspect to him that comes into play in their dynamic. I kept forgetting that there was a seven year age gap because they always dealt with one another as equals. There was so much attraction between them from the beginning and while they both kept to the fiction that they were just friends with benefits, it quickly became more for both of them. They never disrespected each other or their time together, and saw each other as often as they could.
They are both kind of slow and awkward when it comes to the emotional side of their relationship. Both afraid to admit, even to themselves, just how serious they are about their “nothing serious” relationship. Neither willing to ask for more in case it causes the other to end their arrangement. It was all okay though because they didn’t do anything stupid or unnecessary to complicate things or cause drama.
I was pulled in by the humor and sexy beginning, kept involved by the sweet and sex and family, watching them develop this whole world for themselves in being together. Suddenly it was time for their story to end and I realized that I’d read the whole book and it was time to say goodbye. It made for a very nice evening. Recommended for those who like sweet and fun with their sex and love and aren’t looking for a lot of pain, drama or angst.
Reviewed by Nina