Title ~ Paulie
Author ~ John Inman
Publisher ~ Dreamspinner Press
Genre ~ M/M Romance
Published ~ January 6th 2014
Rating ~ 5 Stars
To the casual observer, Paulie Banks lives the perfect life. After all, he's young, handsome, and rich. But Paulie has a secret. He's madly in love with Ben, his old college roommate -- and Ben is straight! Now Paulie has arranged a two-week reunion with his three closest friends to rehash their college years and get to know each other again. Jamie and Trevor are coming, along with their new lovers. And to Paulie's amazement, even Ben has accepted his invitation.
Beautiful Ben. The one non-gay apple in the old college barrel. Paulie will soon find out if Ben has forgiven him for overstepping the bounds of friendship on the last drunken night they spent together.
With his La Jolla mansion spotless, a stunning new houseboy hired for the duration, and his heart pounding in both fear and anticipation, Paulie welcomes his old friends back into his life. Thanks to a whole lot of liquor and a clothing optional dress code, boy, do the festivities begin!
Earlier this month, we were asked to choose some personal favourites for the blog and one of the categories was 'Which books in 2013 made you laugh?' I picked some great ones but why oh why did I not include any of John Inmans books?
Arrrgh! I've been kicking myself so hard for forgetting to include him and its really bothered me because he's funny with a capitol Snort and he gave me some awesome laughs last year when I discovered his books and read them pretty much back to back! So now I have a chance to set the record straight and give the man the kudos he deserves.
Paulie is the fifth book of his that I've read and once again I've gone through the whole book with a goofy grin on my face, interspersed with giggles galore, laughs out loud and a whole dollop of snickering. Mr Inman makes me titter, its that simple, but what I also love about Johns style is that underneath all the slap stick, crazy, smut filled comedy there's always a really sweet, loving, sexy romance with touches of true tenderness and at times, poignancy. Sometimes he'll put in darker, black comedy undertones that added into the mix give a meatier plot. Does that include Paulie? Not really, but that doesn't mean this still hasn't got a very enjoyable storyline, full of unrequited love, past and present misunderstandings, gorgeous, horny man sluts who are ...*cough*... well endowed in the speedo department (not that they're in them much) and last but not least, another one of Johns trademarks, a cute dog with questionable habits. For Hammer its humping anything he can hang on to!
The main romance is between sweet, rich but ultimately lonely Paulie and his beautiful Ben, the only straight guy amongst his three best friends from college and his long time crush-slash-love of his life. Having lost both his parents at a young age, he's inherited his beloved grandmothers immense fortune, and has just fulfilled his ambition to become a writer but he's never forgotten the feelings he had for Ben or the last memorable time they were together.
" Ben. Who was part and parcel of Paulie's all-time favourite memory ever, and who probably, even now, probably didn't know it."
On the last night of college they share one extremely drunken night of passion but the morning after Ben leaves abruptly and heads off for a teaching job in Omaha, and poor lovesick Paulie never sees or speaks to him again for nearly two years, so hoping Ben will accept an invitation he decides to throw an extravagant two week long house party. To his delight Ben actually accepts, so he also invites his other two BFF's who made up their inseparable college foursome, the ever horny Jamie and Trevor, ex lovers but still hot for each other. The aforementioned man sluts also bring their current 'not so exclusive' young lovers of the moment, Jack and Danny.
Then to top off the fun and games Paulie hires Jeffrey, an extremely well hung, drop dead gorgeous, sex on legs gay houseboy who definitely puts the cat amongst the pigeons. When they where all finally together and the party started, I was soon in tucks at their VERY naughty, sexual antics. Perfect comedy fodder! Lots of naked poolside and bedroom frolics for these guys and boy oh boy do they frolic, with a lot of gay abandon ... excuse the pun!
But at the end of the day its the sexual tension and push and pull love story unfolding between the two MC's that balanced out the comedy and made this such a loveable romance, and I found myself rooting for the two of them to get their act together and stop beating around the bush. Typical non communication problems but strangely it never really irritated me that much. Most of the time when it's stubborn men not talking out their misunderstandings it can grate but in this case I'll put it down to the story being so funny that distracted me from getting too eye rolley.
To be honest it could quite easily have gone into the realms of being too over the top, pervy and wacky when it came to the secondary characters but for me it never did and I really did love them all. I suppose at the end of the day its all about what tickles your funny-bone and I've haven't read a John Inman book yet, that hasn't tickled mine. Mind you I do have a smutty sense of humour so my point of view might be a tad warped! *sniggers*.
So once again he gets five LMAO stars. OH...and one last thing:
But he has to look like Jeffrey.........
About John Inman
John Inman has been writing fiction since he was old enough to hold a pencil. He and his partner live in beautiful San Diego, California. Together, they share a passion for theater, books, hiking and biking along the trails and canyons of San Diego or, if the mood strikes, simply kicking back with a beer and a movie. John's advice for anyone who wishes to be a writer? "Set time aside to write every day and do it. Don't be afraid to share what you've written. Feedback is important. When a rejection slip comes in, just tear it up and try again. Keep mailing stuff out. Keep writing and rewriting and then rewrite one more time. Every minute of the struggle is worth it in the end, so don't give up. Ever. Remember that publishers are a lot like lovers. Sometimes you have to look a long time to find the one that's right for you."
You can contact John at firstname.lastname@example.org
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