Book Reviews

The Applicant (Busted Labs 1) by Aidee Ladnier at Dreamspinner Press

Genre Gay / Futuristic / Time Travel / Robots/Androids/AI / Romance
Reviewed by Serena Yates on 12-January-2017

Book Blurb

How can something so cuddly and adorable be so destructive? The teddy bear robot decimating his lab is only the first disaster of the day for roboticist Forbes Pohle. If he can figure out how to end its rampage, he still has to interview applicants for the position of research assistant and convince the time traveler on his doorstop that they should be making their future right now.


Oliver Lennox didn’t travel back in time to have a quickie in the blast chamber—but it certainly is fun. This younger Forbes is a sweeter, more innocent version of his lover. And it will be hard to leave him behind in the past.


If you like sexy nerds, humor, plenty of action, and a love story not even time can disrupt, this romantic adventure has the perfect credentials for the job.




First Edition published as The Applicant (or Virgins, Robot Bears, and Other Disasters) by Torquere Press, 2012.

Book Review

There are many reasons for time travel, or so fiction tells us, but the one in this novella is pretty unique and very romantic. Not that I can say any more about it without spoiling the story, but what is at the heat of the characters’ motivation in ‘The Applicant’ is very sweet. There is plenty of action and fun to be had as well, what with a robot teddy bear on a rampage, various people coming for job interviews, and more than one surprise for Forbes, who needs a research assistant, and Oliver, the time traveler who gets very involved in the selection.

Forbes is a brilliant roboticist. He has developed a robot teddy bear, except one small change has thrown it out of kilter and now he can’t stop its destructive rampage. On top of that he has a stranger on his doorstep who knows way more than he should about Forbes and his projects. Forbes is extremely attracted to the man who goes by the name of Oliver but he quickly figures out there is more to him than he first suspected.

Oliver has a very clear agenda – and yes, he took some time to have a quickie when the opportunity presented itself, but he is in love with the older Forbes and can’t resist the younger version. Once Oliver accomplished what he set out to do, he finds it surprisingly difficult to return to his own time. It doesn’t become clear until the last few pages of the book what the reasons are, but I could see where he was coming from.

Both versions of Forbes have their own charm, and turning his back on the younger one, knowing what they are both going to face when he does, is not easy for Oliver. It’s a love story that spans two separate points in time, weaves them both together, and produces some interesting results. Not your traditional interpretation of time travel and its potential pitfalls, but one I liked nevertheless. And really, who is to say this one isn’t “right”? It’s all fiction for us so far…

If you like experiments in time travel, if a genius roboticist lacking a sense of reality is your thing, and if you’re looking for an interesting love story of the futuristic kind with an unexpected twist at the end, then you will probably like this novella.





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

Additional Information

Format ebook
Length Novella, 47 pages/15457 words
Heat Level
Publication Date 11-January-2017
Price $3.99 ebook
Buy Link