I thought I knew what love was…
My name is Hunter Willis and I’ve found love. The problem? I’m not sure I’m ready for the rest of the world to know I’ve fallen for my best friend. Everyone knows Max is gay. Me? They think I’m straight as an arrow. So did I, until Max and I shared a kiss three months ago that blew that theory right out of the water.
Now, by the ocean in Florida, thousands of miles away from prying eyes, I’m finally ready to admit to myself that Max and I have something special. Max has been ready for a long time—and he’s been waiting for me. Really waiting. As in… he’s still a virgin. There’s nothing I want more than to be Max’s first lover. But I know when Max gives away that part of himself, it won’t be just a summer fling. It’ll be for keeps. Max deserves the best. I’m just not sure, when it comes right down to it, that I won’t break his heart.
Did I mention I’m scared as hell?
This is a really lovely story. In a few short pages (49 to be exact) Cooper Davis breathes life into the dying art of romance. Hunter Willis tells the story of his love for his gorgeous friend Maxwell Daniels and their wonderful, emotional romance. He and Max had been best friends for 4 years and it was all good clean fun he thought, until Max invited him to a company party and poor Hunter has no idea why he’s there. Up until then he regarded Max as a very beautiful man but he thought nothing about it, after all, he was straight. But why did he get those funny fluttery feelings whenever he looked at Max? Hunter knew Max was gay because he made no effort to hide it, but suddenly he felt himself falling into dangerous territory whenever they were together, until inevitably three months ago they share their first innocent kiss and Hunter knew it was all over for him. He wanted Max with a passion that he could not explain and along with the passion came the tenderness and other sweet emotions that made his toes curl.
Soon he was spending all of his free time at Max’s apartment as they explored these new feelings; all he knew was that Max made him feel warm and tender and loved and he reciprocated in full measure. However there was a big stumbling block to their new relationship. He broke out in hives at the thought of having to declare that he was gay and in love with his best friend, but he knew that Max deserved much better than a tawdry, secret affair. Max was everything to Hunter and he wanted them to spend forever together, but how could he face his friends? Then they decided to go away on holiday to try and make their love more than something transient, and Hunter realized that when they returned they would have to face the music.
I loved, loved, loved this story and the deep emotions and vulnerability of both Max and Hunter as they transition from a 4 year friendship to lovers. The tenor of the book was moving and warm as Hunter takes us through his summer of discovery and shows how his love for Max changed him. There was such innocence and caring in their feelings for each other and every touch between them was so tender and gentle as Max reassures Hunter that everything would work out. The best part of Boys of Summer was the intimacy between the characters and their emotions not only during sex, but before and after as they embark on this new phase of their lives. The sex was not as explicit as that in most M/M books on the market today which suited the mood of the story and I loved the way they seduced each other – the first awkwardness when they have sex and learned each other’s bodies. They were both innocent in many areas since Max had never had sex before and Hunter had never been with a man, consequently the apprehension and fear of doing something wrong was very real. The prose was evocative, exquisite and seductive and both characters were well drawn. The author was careful not to verge into the realm of turning Boys of Summer into something saccharine, and in my opinion she succeeded while remaining true to its overall mood.
I think you will love Boys of Summer if you’re looking for a sweet love story that’s not complex, with two really likeable characters who pull at your heartstrings. Highly recommended.