The Music of Love (CrabbyPatty’s Review)

Title: The Music of Love
Author: Sandine Tomas
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Release Date: June 19, 2018
Genre(s): Contemporary Romance
Page Count: 220
Reviewed by: CrabbyPatty
Heat Level: 3 flames out of 5
Rating: 3 stars out of 5

Sometimes the music of love skips a beat….

Paralegal by day, musician by night, Julian has an expiration date stamped on his forehead when it comes to love. No relationship has made it past a year, so Julian avoids romance like the plague and concentrates on his music instead.

Which works fine until gorgeous, smart, and funny Zachary joins Julian’s firm. One look at the man and Julian knows he’s dangerous. No matter what, he can’t fall for Zachary. He has to spare Zachary the pain of dumping Julian at the one-year mark. His brilliant plan? Ask a straight friend to pose as his significant other to keep Zachary away. Not surprisingly, his scheme does little to dampen the attraction—on either side.

When Zachary gives Julian a second chance despite his deception, Julian thinks his curse might be broken. But then he’s faced with the impossible choice between a life with Zachary and living his dream of touring with the band….

Julian is a late 20’s paralegal who ends up working an involved class action suit with Zach, an early 20’s newly-hired paralegal / law school student. Zachary is pretty much instantly smitten by Julian, but Julian is gun-shy since his last 3 relationships imploded shortly before the one-year mark and enlists his best friend / band mate Gabe to pose as his boyfriend to discourage any romance with Zach.

I like the premise of the fake boyfriend and went into this story preparing to like the set-up and follow-through. However the “fake boyfriend” plot comes and goes away very quickly, and Julian and Zach quickly become a couple – one with loads of chemistry and sexual sizzle. Around 50% through the book, it feels as if various situations are introduced solely to create some uncertainty in their relationship (since apparently the path to true love is never a straight nor easy one.) This book needs to come with a Warning: “This tale is full of drama, as in packed to the brim with angst, misunderstandings, whining, worrying, miscommunications, rinse, lather, repeat.”

To say that Julian is a drama queen is a vast understatement. He is high maintenance with a tendency to look for the bad side of everything, i.e. his boss asks to speak to him, and Julian immediately assumes he is going to be fired. Julian is filled with self-doubt, he is a perfectionist, he has anxiety attacks. He is a lot of work.

For me personally, Julian is too much, and as I continued with the book, I grew weary of the “angst-fest” that is constantly in the forefront. I like Julian and Zach as a couple and in their quieter moments, they are perfect for one another. The story is well-written and the characters are very memorable. But, while other readers may be able to get beyond all the drama, I could not. 3 stars.

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Advanced Review Copy

Galley copy of The Music of Love provided by Dreamspinner Press in exchange of an honest review.


Once you learn to read, you will be forever free.  Frederick Douglas

I distinctly remember that day in school when, all of a sudden, those squiggles on the page made sense and I could read. It has changed my life in ways I still cannot comprehend.

My favorite M/M tropes are friends-to-lovers, murder/mysteries, amnesia, hurt/healing and historicals. Shifters, vampires, paranormal? Meh … not in my wheelhouse, but I’m a sucker for a well-written well-plotted book, no matter the genre.

Favorite authors includes Brandon Witt, Rick R. Reed, Abigail Roux, Jay Northcote, JL Merrow, KJ Charles, Lane Hayes, Marshall Thornton and so many more.

A few “badges” from NetGalley:
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