Learning To Love Cats (Belen’s Review)

Learning to Love CatsTitle: Learning To Love Cats
Author: K.M. Mahoney
Publisher: Pride Publishing
Release Date: July 19th 2016 (2nd Edition)
Genre(s): M/M Contemporary Romance
Page Count: 53 pages
Reviewed by: Belen
Heat Level: 3 flames out of 5
Rating: 2.8 stars out of 5

It isn’t exactly a match made in heaven.

Mike isn’t much of an animal lover, but his sister insists every little boy needs a pet. Which is how Mike finds himself sitting in a veterinary office, trying to explain the facts of life to his six-year-old nephew while holding a dead hamster in a shoebox. It’s not one of his finer moments. So of course, that’s when he encounters the cute, shy and utterly lust-worthy Riley Laytham.

Riley isn’t used to guys flirting with him, and he definitely didn’t expect it to happen at the local vet office. In the kennels, no less, surrounded by cats and dogs and under the close scrutiny of one overly inquisitive little boy.

Their first date is a disaster. They have nothing in common, and Riley’s cats seem determined to end the budding relationship before it can get started. For some reason, though, Mike is sticking around despite cat scratches, rampant allergies, and nosy siblings. Now Riley just has to decide if he can make it work with a guy who staunchly declares that he doesn’t like cats.

Publisher’s Note: This book has previously been released elsewhere. It has been revised and re-edited for re-release with Pride Publishing.

Mike runs a small contracting business, has a twin sister, Lisa who is married to Chuck and they have a four year old son Charlie.

Riley is one of ten children, and he and his siblings bought out their parents farm, Orchard Meadows, where Riley also has a cattery and breeds Norwegian Forest cats.

When Mike takes his nephew’s hamster to the veterinarian he ends up meeting Riley. It’s literally love at first sight for Mike. Though the two have absolutely nothing in common, Mike hates cats – and may even be allergic to them, their whirlwind romance takes them quickly from first meeting to boyfriends to partners.

I’m afraid that Learning to Love Cats requires a bit more suspension of disbelief than I like to employ, especially for such a short novella. I probably wouldn’t have minded so much as there’s some nice humor and the sexy times are hot, but I can’t help be disappointed in how little the characters are developed. I finished the story and I honestly feel like I know next to nothing about the characters.

I felt like neither character was well fleshed out, either individually or together. I wanted more information about Mike and Riley; their hopes, their dreams. I was disappointed I wasn’t shown more about their relationship, how they interact together and with their families. It was too short, and the time jumps exacerbated the feeling of disconnect from the characters for me.

While I enjoyed the humor and the heat, I missed the necessary character development to really engage with the story.

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Advanced Review Copy

Galley copy of Learning To Love Cats provided by Pride Publishing in exchange of an honest review.

While I enjoyed the humor and the heat, I missed the necessary character development to really engage with the story.

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I am an unapologetic book addict/lover. I'm happiest when reading and I spend most of my time with my Kindle, which is never far from my hand. I love to be told a good story! I mostly read fiction: Romance, Erotica, Young Adult, New Adult, Paranormal (shifters? Yes, please!), a little BDSM when I'm in the mood, and I love a good ménage story. I DEFINITELY PREFER A HFN/HEA! My biggest no-no's are cheating, miscommunication / misunderstanding plots, unnecessary angst, and cliffhangers.

A sampling of my "Favorite M/M" stories:

Carry the Ocean The Half of Us Red Dirt Heart Adulting 101 Tied Up In Knots
Shelter the Sea Manties in a Twist David, Renewed Ethan who Loved Carter Perfect Imperfections
Wolfsong Fight the Tide How to Walk Like A Man The Lightning-Struck Heart Forging the Future