Title: Regret Me Not
Author: Amy Lane
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Release Date: December 4, 2017
Genre(s): M/M Christmas
Page Count: 113
Reviewed by: Susan
Heat Level: 3 flames out of 5
Rating: 3.25 stars out of 5
Pierce Atwater used to think he was a knight in shining armor, but then his life fell to crap. Now he has no job, no wife, no life—and is so full of self-pity he can’t even be decent to the one family member he’s still speaking to. He heads for Florida, where he’s got a month to pull his head out of his ass before he ruins his little sister’s Christmas.
Harold Justice Lombard the Fifth is at his own crossroads—he can keep being Hal, massage therapist in training, flamboyant and irrepressible to the bones, or he can let his parents rule his life. Hal takes one look at Pierce and decides they’re fellow unicorns out to make the world a better place. Pierce can’t reject Hal’s overtures of friendship, in spite of his misgivings about being too old and too pissed off to make a good friend.
As they experience everything from existential Looney Tunes to eternal trips to Target, Pierce becomes more dependent on Hal’s optimism to get him through the day. When Hal starts getting him through the nights too, Pierce must look inside for the knight he used to be—before Christmas becomes a doomsday deadline of heartbreak instead of a celebration of love.
I liked this, but didn’t love it.
32 year old Pierce is recovering from a serious car accident. Pierce is a bit of a grump because of his injuries, but also because of his divorce, and that’s why he knows he cannot let his sister take care of him while he recovers. He takes up his best friend on his offer to stay in his empty condo until Christmas. There Pierce is planning on daily swims in the condo’s communal pool and eating lots of canned soup. When he’s feeling a bit better he plans on spending Christmas with his sister.
On Pierce’s first day in the condo he meets a young guy by the pool. That young guy is 23 year old Hal, who is studying as a physical therapist. Pierce doesn’t quite know how it happens but suddenly Hal is acting as his own personal physical therapist/masseur/friend/perhaps more than friend. But Pierce thinks Hal is too young, too good for his grumpy ‘old’ ass..
I’m normally completely sucked in when reading Amy Lane’s books. But somehow that never happened here. The way the friendship started between these men was a little vague. And the same for the romance part. They kind of talk in circles for a while and vaguely admit their attraction before anything happens.
This is a very quiet book. We have Pierce and Hal and no one else. There are only a few other people present, but only on the phone. We mostly read about Pierce and Hal and their daily life in the weeks before Christmas, doing everything together to get Pierce in better shape.
I did have a hard time feeling real chemistry between these guys. We only get Pierce’s POV and while Hal was sweet, he wasn’t that clear of a character to me.
A nice holiday read, but not Amy Lane’s best..