You’re Invited

youreinvitedTitle: You’re Invited
Author: Roxy Harte
Buy Link: Amazon.com
Genre: Contemporary M/M/M
Length: Novel (195 PDF pages)
Rating: 4.5 stars out of 5

A guest review by Tj

Summary Review: A sexy and realistic look at the struggles of coming out and dealing with it’s ramifications on one’s life, career and dreams.

The Blurb: Twenty-year-old hottie Bryce Jordan studies hard, plays Lacrosse, and juggles the ladies. He’s the envy of every man on campus, as much for his athletic body as for the different blonde on his arm every Friday night. He seems to have the world by the balls.

So, why is his best friend Stanley suddenly not speaking to him? And why does it matter so much? He gets to make amends but all goes awry when he receives a “Coming Out Party” invitation from his eccentric Aunt Tacky, who entertains at the drag club downtown spoofing celebrity meltdowns. He has no intention of going until Stanley holds their friendship hostage and insists on attending with him as his “guest.”

Unbeknown to Bryce, everyone has acknowledged his homosexuality except him, and the party was conspired between Aunt Tacky and Stanley to help him face the truth. After a light hearted game of spin the champagne bottle lands Stanley and Bryce in the closet, Bryce finally admits he’s been hiding the truth too long. If their friendship survives the night, Stanley and Bryce might just become more than best friends.

But at what cost?

The Review: When I read the blurb above, I was expecting You’re Invited to be a funny, and perhaps light weight read. What I got was a very sexy, sometimes funny book that deals realistically with the serious issue of coming out and the ramifications on one’s life. The characters were very likable, well developed, interesting and reacted realistically to whatever life threw at them.

When college student Bryce receives an invitation from his Uncle Joe (aka Aunt Tacky) to a “coming out” party, his long time friend Stanley wants them to go together. Stanley, being gay, thinks the party will be a lot of fun, whereas Bryce is horrified at the mere idea of it. Stanley eventually gets his way and the boys are off to Bryce’s Uncle Joe‘s for an evening Bryce will never forget. What happens at this party will change the course of Bryce’s life and make him reconsider everything that he had believed.

From here, we are taken on a wild ride along with Bryce through the pleasures and pitfalls of overcoming your fears to live a legitimate life. Bryce had been dating women in a vain attempt to deny his attraction to men, or perhaps to cover it up. But once he is exposed to the hedonistic excesses at his uncle’s party, he can’t deny his true feelings, and is willingly seduced by the incredible pleasures of being with another man… or two. 😉 There is quite a bit of sex in the story, (and I am definitely not complaining) as it seems to fit Bryce’s character as a closeted man who finally has the opportunity to sample the man smorgasbord.  And boy does Bryce get his fill! He actually complains at one point:

“Bryce swallowed, dropping his gaze, not understanding what was going on now that he was facing up to being gay. Was every man he met going to elicit a sexual urge?”

I think his experience is more that once you open yourself up to the possibilities around you, you will find opportunities that would have gone unnoticed before. Poor Bryce, so many men, so little time.

I really liked how Bryce’s denial, and struggles with his sexuality were portrayed, and felt that he could be a real person, granted a very lucky real person with all the sex thrown at him, but still  – real in his feelings and reactions. At some points he is so troubled by what he is doing that he runs from everything. Then he gets drawn back into his new life as he can no longer hide his true feelings. I felt that this was very well done. Bryce also had the added pressure of a father who wants him to have a political career (that Bryce says he also wants), and now must deal with the reality that being gay may end that dream. This was all handled in a fashion that I thought was thoughtful and realistic.

I must warn readers who don’t like more than one man in a bed at a time that this is a m/m/m story and although not all, some of the sex  has the three main characters together, but there are also several scenes of Bryce with one or the other of his partners. I usually don’t care for multi partner stories, but I actually felt that these scenes seemed realistic and all the sex was very hot, without being too clinical – you know none of that one finger, two finger, but still enough detail to be hot. And in case you’re concerned, we do get a nicely done HEA that seemed both realistic and fun.

Overall, I recommend You’re Invited as it was well written, realistic and very sexy.

15 comments

  • Thank you for reviewing You’re Invited!

    After reading the comments, I hope readers of your blog will give You’re Invite a chance! I think I need to ask the publisher to change the blurb to seem less light and fun if it is keeping readers from buying it…

    Thank you for the awesome review!

    Roxy Harte

    Reply
    • Hi Roxy,
      It was my pleasure. I really enjoyed the story. I think you’re right about the blurb. As I mentioned in the review, the blurb made this sound like a light comedy, and although it was funny in parts, I think it might be a little misleading.
      I felt that the story focused more on Bryce’s struggles with being attracted to men, and his feelings for Stanley, as well as how these things effect wanting a political career, and his Dad’s approval.

      Reply
  • Good review, TJ! The blurb actually works against this story for me because it makes it sound both light-weight AND contrived, but I’m getting a different picture from your review, and I might consider picking this one up. Thanks for the info!

    Reply
  • The m/m/m angle in this story did not work for me at all. You have two people who had an organic connection and then two people who had insta-lust/love. Yes the three people had sex together but only one person had a connection to both partners.

    I found myself rooting against the HEA in this story. Parts of the story were so good which made me even more annoyed it didn’t end the way I wanted it to.

    Reply
    • Hi Aquina,
      I completely see your point, and like you, at times wanted Bryce to just be with just Stanley, especially when he found out about Bryce’s other partner. But as I said to Wave, I also felt that Bryce was nowhere near mature enough to be exclusive with Stanley. And Stanley had no problem fooling around with 2 other guys at once at Aunt Tacky’s party, so I got the feeling that he would end up embracing the threesome too.

      At the end I felt that the author was leading the reader to believe that Stanley and the third guy were going to develop a relationship as well making the threesome more balanced. It would have been nice had their relationship developed earlier in the story, but I remained hopeful at the end.

      Reply
    • I agree with Aquina about this one… gave this a try just bc of the blurb (that hinted towards a totally different story) but I didn’t get the menage at all.

      Reply
    • Hi Ingrid,
      Maybe it was the blurb? I think it doesn’t capture the tone or message of the book very well. As I mentioned in the review I was expecting something far lighter spirited, but ended up liking the book a lot despite that.

      Reply
  • Hi TJ
    As always, nicely done, and you hit all the high points that I, as a reader, would be looking for in your review.

    You know that I love M/M/M when it’s integral to the storyline and I gather that in this case it is. I’m curious – who is the other man (or maybe it’s men) lol in bed with Bryce and, I assume, Stanley? Is this a spoiler? I won’t ask who Bryce ends up with – I’ll wait to read all about it in the book. 🙂

    Thank you TJ.

    Reply
    • Thank you Wave. I thought about you when I finished reading and think you would like this one. I think the m/m/m worked here because Bryce was young and newly out, finding himself attracted to a lot of men and seemingly not anywhere near ready to commit to just one.

      Yes his BF Stanley is one of his lovers, but I don’t want to say who the other is because it might spoil the story for others. I thought the third guy sounded hot and I could see why Bryce wanted him too. I hope you enjoy their story.

      Reply

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