Rating: 4.75 stars out of 5
To architecture student Ian Carney, family means everything. Taken in by his brother, Jim, when his father threw him out at eighteen for being gay, Ian yearns to create his own family with his boyfriend, Rico. But Rico’s in Mexico caring for a sick father, Ian hasn’t had sex in a month and a half, and his gorgeous boss, Braden Lord, CEO of the architectural firm Ian interns for, is looking better and better.
Braden’s life is chaos. Just out of the closet and going through an ugly divorce from his wife of fifteen years who’s trying to take custody of his two children, he desperately resolves not to succumb to a completely inappropriate attraction to Ian—even though his kids adore both the man and his crazy cat.
When Rico proves to be a snake in the grass and Ian exercises his powers of seduction, what starts as a “friends with benefits” fling turns into real life real fast. Can Ian give up his romantic dreams for an “old guy” who didn’t come out until he carried a mountain of baggage? It’ll only take a thousand steps.
Lord of a Thousand Steps is more than I expected. Since Ian has been, mostly, a side character in the previous stories, I was a tad skeptical. Based on the other books, he was set with Rico and that’s about all I needed to know. After reading the blurb, I wasn’t too interested in Braden, but the author surprised me.
Braden ended as my favorite character in the story. Yes, I do have a sweet spot for middle-aged men with kids. And the less experience they have, the best. I love how protective he is of his children and how that mentality extended to include Ian. It’s sweet to see how well they interacted with the kids as if they were theirs to start with. Plus, his business partners, employees, and clients were great.
On Ian’s side, I like how mature he was for his age. But at the same time, he still had naive and youthful hopes that make him an adorable character. Adding Anderson to the mix just gets the whole thing to a new level. I wasn’t a fan of Rico or the parts of the story that involved him. He was more like a reason for Braden and Ian to get together.
All the troupes and over the top events are there and gave the book that air of fiction based on reality this series does so well. I enjoyed seeing Jim & Ken once again—and how big of a part they played in this story. The rest of the guys are back too. It almost felt as a type of farewell for the series even when I don’t know if this is going to be the last book. Everything is going great in their tight group of misfits.
My only complaint about this book is how the job of an architect and how the intern relates to the rest of the company were depicted. Especially when they talked about Ian’s future plans–his licensing, etc. It was a bit unrealistic, but it can be just me since I have been in Ian’s shoes.
K.C. Kelly did a superb job with the characterization, from the women in the story to the children and especially the main characters.
Another winning cover by Reese Dante. It fits the series and the story perfectly. I love seen Anderson as the focal point.
Narrator: K.C. Kelly
Length: 7 hours and 42 minutes
Published: December 12, 2016 (Audio Edition) by Dreamspinner Press
Edition Language: English