Riptide

4 Stars

Wow!! I really enjoyed this book. It’s the latest book in The Boys of Bellamy series and my favorite by this author. The other books in this series have been pretty hit or miss for me and I was absolutely surprised by this one. It had a different feel to it than the pervious three. We got the college experience in the first half while also getting a maturity and depth as they left college, started adulting and reconnected at a wedding. Side note: I wouldn’t consider this a standalone. It’s loaded with characters and situations from the previous books.

Andy and Drew were secondary characters in the other books. Especially book one because they were roommates with Max and Finn. I was curious about their story and really glad that they got a chance to have it told. Drew and Andy are best friends, college roommates and lovers without the label. What started as a silly first kiss led to many firsts between Drew and straight Andy. But, feelings start to grow and Andy realizes that maybe he isn’t quite as straight as he once believed. Do they talk about their feelings? Nope.

“It was easier to exist in this uncomfortable limbo, left wondering and hoping and waiting, rather than risk losing someone who’d become Andy’s entire world.”

This lack of communication leads to the classic misunderstanding about where they stand in the non-relationship and it isn’t until graduation that they realize both men had felt the same. Unfortunately, they are out of time. Drew heads to Chicago for a job and Andy stays at Bellamy for his MBA.

Fast forward two years and they are at a wedding. Without dates. Their reconnection is sweet, sexy, and emotional as they pour two years worth of longing into seeing each other again. Buuuuut, they both still live in different cities. The night of the wedding sets the stage for them to become friends again and step by step they find their way back. The journey has emotional highs and lows. I was cheering them on with every step, all the way to their HEA.

Drew is a classic introvert which made me automatically connect with him. I could see myself in him as he struggled with conversations, being the center of attention, etc… He had a core group of friends with Andy being the best of them all. Andy was the exact opposite and was able to pull Drew out of himself with his contagious personality. He also had a childish streak which annoyed me on occasion. He felt everything so deeply whether it was the highest of highs or lowest of lows. Andy had a darker side and Drew was the calm in his storms. They also had great chemistry and their connection deepened with each “hook-up.”

I appreciated being able to connect with the characters in both stages of life. There was a definite progression of maturity and confidence, individually and between them as a couple. The secondary characters took a piece of my heart too. Noel and Drew’s dad each had a quirkiness to them that I loved. They weren’t cookie cutter characters and I totally adored them and gained greater understanding of each MC through these men.

Definitely recommended to fans that have read the other books in this series.

Copy provided for honest review.

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