Best Man (Close Proximity, #1) by Lily Morton: Review by Lost in a Book for @BMBR
Zeb Evans doesn’t do messy.
The product of a disorganised and chaotic childhood, Zeb likes order and control, and as the boss of his own employment agency he can give that to himself. Life runs along strict lines and he never mixes business with pleasure. Everything in his life lives in neat, alphabetized boxes. Until Jesse.
Jesse Reed is Zeb’s complete opposite. He’s chaos personified. A whirling cyclone of disorder. He’s also charming and funny and a very unwanted distraction.
Which is why it comes as a complete surprise to Zeb to find himself asking Jesse to pose as his boyfriend for a few days in the country at a wedding.
Zeb doesn’t do impulsive, but as the time away progresses, he finds himself increasingly drawn to the merry and irreverent Jesse. But can he bring himself to break the hard-won lessons he’s learnt in life? And even if he can, how could Jesse be attracted to him anyway? He’s so much older than Jesse, not to mention being his boss.
From the bestselling author of the Mixed Messages and Finding Home series comes a warm and funny romance about one man’s fight for control and another man’s determination to circumvent it.
This is the first book in the Close Proximity series, but it can be read as a standalone.
Lily Morton has quickly become an author that I turn to for snark, banter, sassy characters, and comfort reads. Best Man fell right in line with having all of those components in heaps… just add in a 20 year age gap, hairy chest, and some OTT drama and we’ve got another enjoyable read.
The humor begins right away as Jesse and Zeb are introduced. Jesse is hired on at Zeb’s company and then they continue to work together for years. Jesse has a hopeless crush on Zeb while Zeb has slotted him under the employee category without any wiggle room. Nada. Well, that is until Zeb needs Jesse to escort him to a wedding where his ex-boyfriend is getting married. Cue silly shenanigans, uptight Zeb, carefree Jesse, and a getaway with one bed.
I really like the way Lily writes main characters with sass and snark. Jesse is a hilarious yet well-meaning HOT MESS! He has been giving Zeb headaches for years (although, secretly Zeb enjoys it) and has ramped up his PDA for the benefit of the jealous ex… and himself. When Zeb and Jesse finally get down to business, they’ve got some pent-up frustrations that need to be worked out and ohhhh boy do they work them out. Yowza!
Patrick the ex is an asshole. An OTT asshole. There are a few parts that are a tad OTT but things revolving around Patrick were off the charts and some of the drama felt a little unnecessary. Zeb and Jesse get their HEA and IMO, Mr. Spitfire Jesse needed a little more of a backbone when it came to overcoming his conflict with Zeb. Still, I enjoyed Best Man, especially Jesse and Zeb together, and will absolutely continue on with this new series. Recommended.
Copy provided for honest review.