Title: Five Dares
Author: Eli Easton
Publisher: Pinkerton Road
Buy link: Amazon.com (Second Edition)
Release Date: October 2nd 2017
Genre(s): Contemporary, NA
Page Count: 245
Reviewed by: Ele
Heat Level: 4.5 flames out of 5
Rating: 4 stars out of 5
Andy Tyler has been the class daredevil since middle school. Over the years, he’s convinced his best friend, Jake Masterson, to perform some dangerous-looking stunts with him. But the dare they attempt on the night of their college graduation goes sideways. The firecrackers explode too soon and both of them end up with badly burned palms.
But hey, nothing gets the “terrible two-o” down for long, and they recuperate in style at Andy’s family cottage in Cape Cod . As the weeks go by, both Andy and Jake grow frustrated over the inability to use their hands for all sorts of daily activities—including getting off. So Andy begins a new series of dares that don’t just cross the friendship line, they obliterate it.
But what might be mere sexual relief to Andy is serious business to Jake, who only recently got over years of secret pining for his straight best friend. Inevitably, the burns heal, summer ends, and hearts are broken. To fix things, Andy will have to face the greatest dare of all.
Well, turns out that Eli Easton can nail YA too!
Andy and Jake are best friends. Every now and then Andy would goad Jake into taking part in one of his dares (which by the way almost gave me a heart attack. I wouldn’t want to be their mom, for sure). Every time Jake will say no, but in the end he’ll follow along.
The last dare, though, doesn’t end that smoothly, and if you read the blurb you know how things played out.
Andy and Jake are very well sketched characters, with very distinct and interesting voices. The thing I loved the most was how gradually everything evolved: Andy exploring and rediscovering his sexuality, the transition from friends to lovers, the realisation that Andy’s feelings are not exactly friendly. The big epiphany towards the end! All these dares had to mean something!
There are a lot of flashbacks here (I honestly could have done with less), but they ‘re important. They convey the way Andy and Jake communicated during a dare, this undercurrent energy that went through them.
?s for the steam…prepare yourselves. This is the steamiest Eli Easton to date. I’m not used to so much steam by this author, so it came as a surprise. Do you hear me complaining?
I appreciated that the angst in the end didn’t turn into melodrama. It was expected and just enough to keep me engaged.
The one thing I found odd was the grand gesture in the end. It was anti-climatic and came out of the left field. Like a chapter was missing or something like that.
Overall, this was an adorable, funny, NA story, low on the angst, heavy on the smut, and just right in the feels department. Recommended!