Friday, April 14, 2017

Book Brief: Starting From Scratch (Housemates #5) by Jay Northcote

starting from scratchTitle ~ Starting From Scratch (Housemates #5)

Author ~ Jay Northcote

Publisher ~ Jaybird Press

Published ~ 12th April 2017

Genre ~ Contemporary M/M Romance, Transgender





Starting over isn’t easy, but Ben is ready to live his life as the man he was always meant to be.
Ben is transgender and back at university after hormone treatment and chest surgery. His new housemates have no idea about his history and Ben would prefer to keep it that way. He’s starting from scratch and his life is finally on track, except in the romance department. The idea of dating guys as a guy is exhilarating but terrifying, because if Ben wants a boyfriend he’ll have to disclose his secret.
Sid is drawn to Ben from the moment they meet. He normally gets what he wants—in the short term at least. Ben’s guarded at first, and Sid’s not used to guys rejecting his advances. He eventually charms his way through Ben’s defences and helps Ben on his journey of sexual awakening.
It doesn’t matter to Sid that Ben is trans. He’s attracted to the whole person, and isn’t worried about what is—or isn’t—in Ben’s pants. They’re good together, and both of them are falling hard and fast, but Ben’s insecurities keep getting in the way. If Sid can convince Ben he's committed, will Ben finally be able to put his heart on the line?
Although this book is part of the Housemates series, it has new main characters, a satisfying happy ending, and can be read as a standalone.
Length: 57,000 words approx.


Lisa’s Book Brief

Starting from Scratch by Jay Northcote is book five in his Housemates series. Like its predecessors in the series, this book was funny, charming and sweet with a little dirty sexy thrown in for good measure. Ok, let me rephrase that….. with a lot of hella sexy times thrown in. Shite! This author introduces us to a transgender protagonist for the first time in this series. This is a first for me, reading a book with a transgender lead. For me, this fact made this book such a unique reading experience and I loved that.

I loved our two adorably awkward and unsure protagonists, Ben and Sid. Sure, the attraction was there, but a dating relationship with each other would certainly be new territory for both guys. What ensues from a tentative friendship at first are some seriously sexy times as both guys explore the intense attraction between them. But, what happens when it becomes more than a good time between the sheets and feelings begin to emerge? Can Ben and Sid handle the complexities of a serious relationship with each other?

I enjoyed reading Starting from Scratch. I pretty much had a smile on my face the whole time due to the sweetness factor. We get such a brave and heart-felt character with Ben and I appreciated this so much. Sid was such a great character that complemented Ben. While this book is technically the fifth book in Mr. Northcote’s Housemates series, it can certainly be read as a stand-alone although I do recommend reading all the books because they are all wonderful stories. A recommended read for contemporary MM romance fans!

Purchase Links



Housemates Series

Helping Hand (Book 1)

Like a Lover (Book 2)

Practice Makes Perfect (Book 3)

Watching and Wanting (Book 4)


Meet Jay Northcote


Jay lives just outside Bristol in the West of England. He comes from a family of writers, but always used to believe that the gene for fiction writing had passed him by. He spent years only ever writing emails, articles, or website content.

One day, Jay decided to try and write a short story—just to see if he could—and found it rather addictive. He hasn’t stopped writing since.

Jay writes contemporary romance about men who fall in love with other men. He has five books published by Dreamspinner Press, and also self-publishes under the imprint Jaybird Press. Many of his books are now available as audiobooks.

Jay is transgender and was formerly known as she/her.



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