Real World (Lili’s Review)

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Title: Real World (Bend or Break #5)
Author: Amy Jo Cousins
Publisher: Samhain Publishing Ltd
Release Date: November 17th 2015
Genre(s): Contemporary Romance
Page Count: 175 pages
Reviewed by: Lili
Heat Level: 3 flames out of 5
Rating: 5 stars out of 5
Blurb:

When talking fails, it’s time to break out the big guns.

Give years ago, Tom Worthington busted his ass to overcome the fear and paranoia that led him to withdraw from the world and nearly lose his boyfriend. He never thought he’d find himself right back there, shutting Reese out, keeping secrets again.

Reese Anders is ready to try anything to get Tom to talk: if he can’t seduce his boyfriend with food, he’ll get Tom to open up in bed. But even Tom’s confession that his dad is getting out of prison soon doesn’t clear the air between them. And as the holidays approach, intensive mentoring from a new British boss creates more distractions, until Reese is keeping secrets of his own.

At a company Christmas party, it only takes Tom one look at Reese’s new boss to figure out how much danger their relationship is in. But he’s not about to let the connection that started all those years ago at Carlisle come to an end. It’s time to deal with their problems like adults. Face to face. Or back to front. Starting in the bedroom.

Warning: This book contains two adorable guys with way too many secrets, conciliatory rigatoni, a bedroom lesson on the power of multitasking, and indisputable evidence on what makes the perfect holiday HEA.

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Real World by Amy Jo Cousins is probably one of the best- if not the best portrayals of an established couple. This story takes place five years after the first book, and Tom and Reese are living together and working towards their future. At the beginning of the book, Tom is stressing about work and his dad ‘s imminent release from prison. These events cause him to not realize how much danger his relationship is in.

“This was the ground crumbling under his feet at the cliff’s edge as he flung himself backward and hoped not to fall. This was an emergency and Tom was done fucking up. Was done putting his relationship in jeopardy because he was ashamed and fearful and hiding under the shaky leaf of his own lies as if they were rocks.”
-Tom

What I loved about this book was how real and heartfelt it was. When the book began- it felt like years had passed like the characters had matured. I’ve read other sequels about established couples and they feel as if they take place soon after the first book rather than years down the road. It also showed us that relationships aren’t perfect and they take work. Above all, though, I love how committed they were to each other- these guys were in love and their relationship came first.

This was 5 Stars all the way! It’s a great holiday story of love and friendships and for Tom and Reese fans it’s not to be missed!

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Bend or Break Series

Buy Link Author Link GoodReads

Advanced Review Copy

ARC kindly provided by Samhain Publishing for an honest review.

Author

I’m a thirty-something Colombian mother of two. My favorite pastime is to get lost in a book. I’m more of a fluffy romance reader- though I do love an angsty read. I don’t often read Mystery/Suspense nor dark stories. I also NEVER knowingly read stories that don’t end in an HEA or at least HFN. I LOATHE cliffhangers with a passion and not a huge fan of stories with cheating, but it’s not a deal breaker.

My favorite tropes are:
-Best friends to lovers
-May/December
-Hurt/comfort/healing
-Opposites attract
-Humor (as long as it’s not slapstick type comedy)

My favorites authors are:
-Lane Hayes
-Santino Hassell
-Kade Boehme
-TJ Klune
-Heidi Cullinan
-NR Walker
-Eli Easton
-Amy Lane
-Keira Andrews
-Nick Pageant
-Annabeth Albert
-Jay Northcote
-Riley Hart/Nyrae Dawn
-Melanie Hansen

Some of my all time favorites stories are:

-The Five Boroughs Series by Santino Hassell
-Carry the Ocean by Heidi Cullinan
-BOATK Series by TJ Klune (anything he writes actually)
-Let’s Hear It For The Boy by TA Webb
-A Kind of Truth by Lane Hayes
-Strong Signal by Santino Hassell & Megan Erickson
-Superhero by Eli Easton

NetGalley Member since 2015
2016 NetGalley Challenge 80% Professional Reader 2015 Challenge Participant

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2 Comments on "Real World (Lili’s Review)"

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Andrea M

Great review! This book is now on my Buy list.

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