Rating: 5 stars out of 5
I loved this story! In an enemies-to-lovers theme, Todd and Victor start off as men who love to hate one another. But here’s the rub: they really don’t. Or, at least Victor doesn’t hate Todd. He goes to great lengths to keep Todd from knowing how much he cares about him, and their sexy, snarky behavior lights up a room. Heaven forbid they’d get into a relationship! But they do.
These characters were engaging right from the beginning and by the time they were planning to head to Victor’s cousin’s wedding, I was caught up in their story. When they actually arrived at the wedding and were embraced by his huge family, I was convinced this one was a book I’d like. But then it got even better. Their behavior toward one another at the wedding was spell-binding. Both men got a bit tipsy even before the ceremony, so their words and gestures toward one another were more subconscious and definitely more sexy and endearing than either had planned for—the looks, the touches—ahh, so satisfying to this reader. They continued to drink and then to dance and then they woke up married. Somewhere along the way it made perfect sense to them to go into the quaint little wedding-oriented town and tie the knot. They even had matching silicone wedding bands. And lo and behold, when they awoke the morning after, Todd didn’t pack up and run. They decided they’d give it a try over the course of the summer. Todd was, after all, a teacher so had the summer off. And since Victor lived in Oklahoma City, not Bison Hills where their besties Niles and Rusty lived, they could get away with keeping it a secret until they made their decision.
Of course, the best laid plans and all that. Here’s the thing: their personalities were very different. Victor was an all-in, “here’s my heart on a platter” kind of guy, but Todd was “let’s test the water, no one has ever wanted me in their life for long so I shouldn’t make plans to stay” sort of man. Their first months were fine, and the author spent most of that time cementing my love for both characters. And then the cracks started to appear when Victor was faced with financial insecurity from loss of employment and Todd was faced with a decision to quit his job, relocate, and lose his circle of friends—friends that were more like family to him.
In fact, it took me a while before I realized the secondary characters, Niles and Rusty, were the MCs from <i>Life on Pause</i>. Todd and Victor only had cameo appearances in the first book so I just didn’t make the connection. To be honest, I not sure why this isn’t billed as a sequel, but it really does stand alone and reading book one first should have no impact on a reader’s enjoyment of this story. Long story short, it just doesn’t matter. This one is perfect as is.
I really enjoyed the way the author managed to engage me in their lives—both of them. I cried with them, laughed with them, and labored over their decisions with them. And then I shared their heartache. Thankfully, by the end I was able to share the joy as they made their final decision and started down the path to their HEA. Totally satisfying, fulfilling, enjoyable story! Very highly recommended.
The brightly colored cover depicts two young men, one hugging the other other from behind. Both are laughing and apparently having fun—the perfect depiction of Todd and Victor.
Google Play: https://bit.ly/2GvhZMW
Books2Read/Universal Links: https://books2read.com/lifeofbliss
Published April 30th 2018 by Erin McLellan
Original TitleLife of Bliss
SeriesLove Life #2