Book Reviews

Mark Cooper versus America by J.A. Rock & Lisa Henry at Loose Id

Genre Gay / Contemporary / Students/Teachers/Professors / New Adult / Erotic Romance
Reviewed by Christy Duke on 24-February-2014

Book Blurb

Mark Cooper is angry, homesick, and about to take his stepdad’s dubious advice and rush Prescott College’s biggest party fraternity, Alpha Delta Phi. Greek life is as foreign to Aussie transplant Mark as Pennsylvania’s snowstorms and bear sightings. So, when the fraternity extends Mark a bid, Mark vows to get himself kicked out by the end of pledge period. But then he’s drawn into Alpha Delt’s feud with a neighboring fraternity.

Studious Deacon Holt is disappointed to learn Mark’s pledging Alpha Delt, his fraternity Phi Sigma Kappa’s sworn enemy. Mark is too beautiful for Deacon to pass up an invitation for sex, but beyond sex, Deacon’s not sure. He wants a relationship, but a difficult family situation prevents him from pursuing anything beyond his studies.

Mark and Deacon’s affair heats up as the war between their fraternities escalates. They explore kinks they didn’t know they had while keeping their liaison a secret from their brothers. But what Romeo and Juliet didn’t teach these star-crossed lovers is how to move beyond sex and into a place where they share more than a bed. That’s something they’ll have to figure out on their own—if the friction between their houses, and between Mark and America, doesn’t tear them apart.


Book Review

I'm not sure exactly what attracted me to this book. I mean, I was not a member of the Greek organizations in college. In fact, I thought the entire thing was a giant waste of time and just an excuse for kids to be even more pretentious regarding their popularity rating. Definitely not my thing. But I empathized with someone living in a different country and not liking it at all, where everything was so different and the customs were strange. Plus, I had a feeling that Mark was going to be pretty sarcastic and rude which I knew I'd love. So, all things considered, I jumped straight into 'Mark Cooper versus America'.

The first time Deacon met Mark he thought "that's an angry bunny" and Mark really was. His mum married an American and they moved from Australia to Pennsylvania. In February Mark hated snow and cold and wet. Now he's at Prescott University and rushing (what is that?) the fraternity his stepfather was in and Mark is miserable. His only highlight is meeting Deacon who unfortunately belongs to a rival fraternity, and Brandon who is a nice, sweet, very sincere kid trying to become a pledge to make his dad proud. Mark decides he'll do whatever he can to get the Alpha Deltas to throw him out. Unbeknownst to him, they seem to like his obnoxious, sarcastic, rude, and unapologetic self. Huh. Soon the joke between Deacon and Mark is that they are Romeo and Juliet with their rival fraternities.

"So, uh...." Mark swallowed. "I can't promise you much. I'm not a hopeless romantic, and sometimes I forget that people generally like it when you do nice things for them. I've never been anyone's boyfriend. And I probably could, in my own way, out-douche a lot of the Alpha Delts...... But you don't have to be afraid to tell me anything. Because I won't judge you for it. And you don't have to worry about not seeming like a good guy in front of me. Because I guarantee I've been a worse guy. And if you need anything from me, just ask. I'm not the best at figuring out what people need on my own. But if you tell me, I'll try to give it. That's what I can promise you."

About halfway through this book I realized that, jokes and sarcasm notwithstanding, this story was about so much more than just two guys falling in love and a fraternity war. It's about learning how to let go of your fears, your defensiveness, your anger, and allow yourself to be vulnerable and to love. Mark hid so much of himself behind a wall of bitterness while trying to convince himself that he was rebelling against the powers-to-be instead of letting go of his anger. Deacon had his own problems dealing with a mother with psychological issues and his battle with trying to be understanding. Between the two of them, they found something in the other which they each desperately needed. Mark found stability, goodness and a guy he could be himself with and let go. Deacon found a joy in life, a playfulness, and a guy he could explore his limits with. And, they each found love.

I so enjoyed this story way more than I thought I would. I can most definitely recommend it as a wonderful read.






DISCLAIMER: Books reviewed on this site were usually provided at no cost by the publisher or author. This book has been provided by Loose Id for the purpose of a review.

Additional Information

Format ebook
Length Novel, 80810 words
Heat Level
Publication Date 28-January-2014
Price $7.99 ebook
Buy Link