Ethan Daniels, host of a popular conservative cable news program, has never thought of his bisexuality as a problem, even though he has never acted on his attraction to men. Since his divorce, his desire has become more acute. When he meets Charlie Woods, his daughter’s first grade teacher, they have an instant spark, but Ethan hesitates to act. His contract is up for renewal, there are already rumors swirling about him because of a brief encounter from his past, and the last thing his employers want is for one of their stars to come out publicly.
Charlie avoids romantic entanglements because he prefers living on his own terms. He keeps love and sex completely separate, never seeing anyone more than a few times. Hooking up with a closeted celebrity like Ethan seems safe from emotional involvement, even if they have to keep their fledgling relationship secret.
The last thing they expect is to fall in love, but their strong mutual attraction moves them both to make changes neither of them thought they wanted or needed.
I was drawn to this story because I have enjoyed the trope where one of the main characters is struggling with coming to terms with being gay. That trope typically lends to that character doing a lot of soul searching and coming to terms with their sexuality. This book was mostly in line with that.
Ethan is a super sexy host of news show for a conservative news network. He took the job because his ex-wife moved to New York City and he didn’t want to be too far away from his daughter. It has been a year since he has been divorced and Ethan has not dated anyone since then. There is a small amount of time spent talking about how this might be because he is now more interested in men and with the restrictions from his employer weigh in on this.
Charlie is a teacher and is out with his friends. Charlie very rarely dates or goes out with a man more than a few times. He seems to have some commitment issues, but I never caught what is the reason for this. Maybe there isn’t one and Charlie just likes to have sex, no judgment here.
Charlie spots Ethan in a bar one night and they are drawn to each other. They end up going home together. Ethan is too drunk to really know what he wants, so it made me slightly irritated with Charlie that he still engaged with sex with him. They didn’t go all the way, and I only forgave Charlie for it because he acknowledged it next time he saw Ethan.
After their first non-drunk encounter both Charlie and Ethan are having dreams and visions of the other becoming a part of each others lives in a long term basis. Neither man really knows how to deal with those feelings. They progress into a quasi-relationship, yet hidden from public. The biggest piece to that was that Ethan was afraid that by being out, it would not go well at his upcoming contract renewal. This was supposed to be the main conflict of the book, as Ethan grappled with coming to terms with his sexuality the implications on his job as well as his ex-wife and daughter. I felt like some of the conflict was not really there. Late in the book Ethan mentions that one of the reason he didn’t want to be out in public with Charlie was he was worried what people thought, employer, etc. This book was in dual POV, but at no point in Ethan’s part of the story was that brought up. I didn’t even recall it being hinted at.
Overall this was a cute story of men falling in love. I felt like some thoughts were not completely fleshed out and some resolutions came very easily. There were a few timing errors that I distracted me, in one scene Charlie took off his clothes and showered twice. One of Charlie’s friends started dating the doorman of Ethan’s buildings and I would have like to have read more about that. I would recommend this book if M/M is any interest to you.