Title: Counting Fence Posts (Counting #1)
Author: Kelly Jensen
Buy link: Amazon.com (Second Edition)
Release Date: July 23rd 2016
Page Count: 61
Reviewed by: Ele
Heat Level: 2.5 flames out of 5
Rating: 3 stars out of 5
There are over two hundred thousand fence posts between Syracuse and Boston. Henry Auttenberg likes numbers—it’s his job—but he isn’t going to count them all, even if the view outside the rental car is less confounding than the driver, his attractive but oh so obnoxious colleague, Marcus Winnamore. It’s Christmas Eve, and Henry would much rather be home with his family. When the blizzard that grounded their flight forces them off the road, however, he’s stuck with Marc until the storm passes—or a plow digs them out.
As the temperature outside plummets, the atmosphere inside the car slowly heats up. Henry learns the true reason for Marc’s chilly distance—he’s not exactly straight… maybe… and he’s been fantasizing about Henry’s mouth, among other things. Confession laid out, Marc is all for sharing body heat… and more. Henry isn’t interested in being an experiment, but as the night and cold deepen, he could be convinced to balance certain risk against uncertain reward.
I ‘ve become a fan of Kelly Jensen’s writing this last year. I like her stories because, albeit short, they ‘re funny, sexy and romantic. Although I enjoyed Counting Fence Posts, I didn’t love it like Wrong Direction or When Was the Last Time.
The first 50% of the book had me really hooked. Henry and his annoying colleague, Marc, are trapped in their rental car during a snowstorm. Forced to spend the night together, they get to know each other better, and realise that appearances can be deceptive.
The story is short but there is a lot of slow burn. Like A LOT! And it’s delicious. One taste of Henry, and Marc is insatiable. His family doesn’t matter, the fact they work together doesn’t matter. I loved that Marcus was all in after that first kiss.
There is not a lot of steam, but the chemistry between the MCs is crazy. The story ends with a tentative HFN, and I’d definitely like to see more of these two in the future. The writing is pretty good and I loved the snarky and funny dialogue.
“Tell that to the blizzard out there.” Marc glanced over. “You sound like my uncle Bob.”
“Yeah, well, the GPS sounds like my aunt Debbie.”
Debbie chose that moment to chime in with, “Signal lost.”
“No shit, Debbie,”…
What confused me was Marc’s thoughts and declarations about his sexuality, and not because he was confused too. That’s to be expected. Marcus has been with women all his life but now he finds himself obsessed with Henry. But he declares himself “not bisexual”. Why not? On the other hand, it seems that he never felt like this with a woman, so maybe he is gay after all. In any case, I desperately needed Marc’s POV, which I didn’t get. And Henry is not exactly a reliable narrator.
And another niggle:
“Half the women I’ve taken out have needled me about their appearance and career, as if they need my approval to exist, let alone count on a second date. I don’t get it.”
Lets not do this anymore, ok?
Bottom line, this was an enjoyable shortie with a Christmas feel to it. I’m looking forward to reading more from the author.