Wednesday, April 25, 2018

As I Am by Melissa Collins

Title: As I Am
Author: Melissa Collins
My Rating: A-

Genre: Contemporary Romance (m/m)
Main Characters: Chase and Noah
Release Date: April 2018
Links to Purchase
Sexual Intensity: hot

Story Overview:
Chase Hansen. Broke. College drop out. Male stripper.

My life wasn't at all what I imagined it would be. I should have been finishing up college, interning with a well-respected business, partying with my friends. But instead, I was raising my seventeen year old brother, struggling to make ends meet. Love wasn't even on my radar. Besides, what did I have to offer? A few crumpled singles pulled from my G-string? Defeated and exhausted, I knew I had zero chance of finding someone to love me just as I am.

Noah Carpenter. Angry. Betrayed. Doctor.

Just when I thought my life was going exactly as it should, everything turned upside down. With my final rotation in medical school complete, I finally achieved my lifelong dream of becoming a doctor. What I never expected was to catch the man of my dreams in our bed with the man of his. Beyond infuriated, I struggled to piece together the remnants of my life. Just when I'd decided to give up on love altogether, I found a man who loved me just as I am.

This is the extended version of the short story which originally appeared in the Drunk in Love Anthology.

My Review:
This was a good read. 

On the surface, Noah and Chase are at very different points in their lives. Noah has just finished his residency and is a doctor. He's also just broken up with Rob, who cheated on him after three years together.

Chase is just trying to survive. A few months before both his parents died in a car wreck, leaving him as the sole provider for his sixteen year old brother. With only one semester left in college, he had to drop out and become a stripper just to survive. This was not the future he saw for himself. 

The two met when Noah attended his best friend's bachelorette party at the strip club. And what starts out as just sex begins to develop into more. 

I like the way this story unfolded. After their one night of sex, it's a full month before they run into one another again, and in that month, they both have thought about the other often. That worked for me and made me really like how things evolved for them from there. 

My heart broke for Chase. He's in such a hard place and doing everything he can, which doesn't seem to be enough. These two brothers are seriously living right on the edge. There were also some great supporting characters in his life...Ben, his brother; Gavin, his straight best friend (who wow...the end of his story line was totally unexpected and don't read any spoilers into that...unexpected, but not bad...he's just an amazing friend). Note, I also really liked Wes, Noah's best friend and his approach once he realized some details that no one had caught. 

I liked the romance and the story. I devoured this book once I started reading it. It's a good one and I definitely recommend it. 

I received a complimentary copy of this book in return for an honest review.

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