Book Reviews

Not a Game (Friends 1) by Cardeno C. at The Romance Authors

Genre Gay / Contemporary / Romance
Reviewed by Christy Duke on 18-August-2016

Book Blurb

An accidental meeting and a misunderstanding lead to a life-altering connection.

A new job, a new city, and hopefully a new life. When chubby gamer Oliver Barnaby receives a job offer from the best boutique game developer in the country, he leaves his family and his less than spectacular existence in Oklahoma without a second’s hesitation. Determined to change more than his career and his geography, Oliver implements a plan to finally land a boyfriend. Step one is improving his skills in the bedroom.

A life that looks perfect on paper, but feels empty in reality. Attractive, successful, charismatic Jaime Snow has a life other people envy. His already booming business is growing. He isn’t lacking in friends. And he has no trouble finding a date. But there’s an emptiness in Jaime’s heart and a hole in his life that only the right man can fill.

An accidental meeting, a misunderstanding, and falling in love. When Oliver and Jaime end up at the same bar at the same time, they each see something they want in the other. Going to bed together that first night is easy. Building the lifetime relationship they both desperately crave will require trust, time, and a little misunderstanding.

Book Review

I fell in love with Oliver from the very first moment. He's a chubby geek with little few social skills, shy, introverted, and way more comfortable behind his computer creating games. Jaime was in the wrong place at the right time and something about him just warmed my heart. These are the types of characters Cardeno C. is a genius at writing so it was a given that I would be reading her latest release 'Not a Game'.

When the blurb said "An accidental meeting and a misunderstanding" I had no idea how right that would be. Unfortunately I don't feel as if I can share what that means because it's a giant spoiler and sets the stage for everything that happens. Just believe me when I say the concept was nowhere even remotely in my mind as what it could be based on the description.

Since I'm hindered by not revealing details, I can, however, talk about the slow and delicious falling in love these two men experience. Oliver has such a horrible self-image and truly believes no one would want to be his friend much less his boyfriend, and it was a beautiful thing to see Jaime work on instilling confidence and belief in Oliver's own worth. Because of the circumstances of their meeting, Oliver is able to speak much more honestly and frankly with Jaime. Jaime is enjoying the fact that Oliver is so different from everyone else he knows. It's refreshing for Jaime and makes wanting to be with Oliver a priority.

“You’re beautiful, you know that?”
“You make me feel like that could be true,” Oliver said quietly.
Jaime curled his hand around Oliver’s nape and brushed their lips together. “It is true.”

'Not a Game' is probably the most romantic book I've read in a very long time. I mean that in the truest sense of the word. Everything about the story, the main characters, and the secondary ones, just worked and fit together seamlessly. I can't wait for book two.





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Additional Information

Format ebook and print
Length Novel, 220 pages/55872 words
Heat Level
Publication Date 15-July-2016
Price $4.99 ebook, $13.99 paperback
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