The Fireman’s Pole (Susan’s Review)

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Title: The Fireman’s Pole
Author: Sue Brown
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Release Date: Ocotber 15, 2017
Genre(s): M/M Contemporary
Page Count: 220
Reviewed by: Susan
Heat Level: 3 flames out of 5
Rating: 2 stars out of 5

The flames of passion rise for the lord of the manor.

It’s springtime in Calminster village, but things are already heating up. Sexy firefighter Dale Maloney is new to the local station. When Dale backs the company fire engine into the village maypole, he attracts the ire—and attention—of Benedict Raleigh, the Baron Calminster.

Soon after meeting Dale, Ben breaks off his relationship with his girlfriend, and the sparks between Ben and Dale are quickly fanned into flames.

Unfortunately the passion between the two men isn’t the only blaze in the village. An arsonist’s crimes are escalating, and it’s up to Dale and his crew to stop them. Meanwhile, as they investigate, an unscrupulous business partner attempts to coerce Ben into marrying his daughter. The May Day parade is around the corner, but they have plenty of fires to put out before Ben can finally slide down the fireman’s pole.

I really don’t like leaving bad reviews for ARCs. But even it’s nice to have gotten an ARC, it still doesn’t make me like a book more. But if the blurb of this book appeals to you, please ignore this review.

This was such a mess. Especially the romance part. Well, actually the mystery/suspense part too. Who am I kidding, everything was a mess.

Let’s start off with Ben. Or should I say Lord Calminster, since he was royalty and all that. He was an utter and complete ass the first few times he and Dale met, but still Dale fell madly in love with him. No idea why…

The first time fireman Dale and Lord Calminster meet Dale is rescuing an old lady from a house and Ben is getting in his way with doing his job by demanding answers and by being an arrogant ass.

“Sir, get back behind the cordon, please. We’ll be able to answer your questions later. Let me get back to doing my job.”
“Don’t you know who I am?”
Dale’s fraying patience snapped. “I don’t care if you’re Lord Muckety-Muck himself, sir. Get back behind the cordon now!”

Oh yes, so charming, this lord.

The second time Dale accidentally runs over the maypole, which is unfortunate but since he offers to fix it I didn’t get why Ben went ballistic on his ass.

And those two meetings, where they spoke maybe 5 (angry) sentences to each other is apparently enough for both of them to fall in love. Because Ben breaks up with his girlfriend (beard), who he never was intimate with, because he has met Dale.

And Dale apparently is totally falling for the arrogant Lord Calminster because who wouldn’t like someone who chews you out in front of an audience for making a mistake.

After this they go for coffee, then dinner, and apparently they are in a fully committed relationship before the first kiss even happened.

This even happens then:

“Who’s your heir if you don’t have kids?”
“I’ve got a really nice cousin who lives in Australia. He’d be horrified if he inherited.”
“We can have kids,” Dale said.
“My sister offered to be my surrogate,” Dale said.
Dale chuckled. “I’m not talking right this second, but she and her husband offered if I ever found the right man.”

Wow, that’s fast.

And after the kids talk, Dale tells Ben they can’t have sex yet because Dale still feels vulnerable from his last break-up a few weeks before. Of course when Dale spends the night the next day, his ex is completely forgotten and Dale is fully on board with the sex, until the butler knocks on the door for breakfast. And of course they cannot ignore the butler so they go downstairs to eat instead of having hot monkey sex.

Oh, and I guess to make this book feel more real we suddenly have Dale scratching his armpit, belching and then burping, all on the same page. It just grossed me out. Not attractive at all. And it came out of nowhere.

There was no relationship development whatsoever in this entire book. These guys admit they like each other (no idea why), there is mention of amazing chemistry a lot (I also didn’t see this), they talk about future kids, there is some kissing, eventually there is some sex and oh, an arsonist is thrown in right before the I love yous.

And let’s talk about that arsonist. Somewhere halfway there is the mention of someone starting fires. Not long after this they find out who did it because someone simply comes up to Ben and tells him (talk about anti-climactic). It was just this silly side plot that totally fell flat and was simply there to fill a few pages.

So what bothered me most about this was the relationship, since a few conversations does not a relationship make. These guys had no chemistry at all and were boring individually and even more boring together.

Sorry, but I do not recommend.

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Galley copy of The Fireman’s Pole provided by publisher in exchange of an honest review.

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