Hi there! Today I’m sharing a review for a Christmas-themed M/M romance from Jay Northcote. WHAT HAPPENS AT CHRISTMAS is a standalone friends-to-lovers story that is just a perfect read. You know I just love these Brit boys and their sexy escapades, so I’m glad to get the chance to share that interest here. Check out the excerpt, review and giveaway below.
About the book:
When two friends pose as boyfriends, could what happens at Christmas turn into something more?
Justin is recently and unhappily single. Christmas is coming, and he doesn’t want to face his ex alone at their office party. So Sean—Justin’s best mate and long-time secret crush—volunteers to go with him and pretend to be his new flame.
Sean has always lusted after Justin from afar, but there’s never been a good opportunity to ask him for more than friendship. Posing as Justin’s boyfriend isn’t a chore, and if Justin wants to rebound onto him, Sean’s more than willing. At the party pretense and reality blur, and a kiss on the dance floor leads to a night of passion.
In the aftermath, they both assume it was a one-time thing until fate intervenes. Stuck together in London over the holidays, they give in to temptation again. But what happens at Christmas stays at Christmas… right?
How about a little taste?
Justin’s phone chimed with a text, interrupting Sean’s train of thought.
Justin picked up his phone to read the message. “Ugh.” He put the phone back down without typing a reply and ran his hands through his hair.
Justin sighed. “It’s our work Christmas party next weekend. I’ve already got a ticket, and nearly everyone in the office goes, but it’s for partners as well. One of my co-workers, Jess, is bugging me to come, but I can’t face it. I bet Andy’s going to bring his new boyfriend. I know he’s a shit and I shouldn’t let him get to me, but the thought of him parading around with my replacement, and me being there on my own, isn’t very appealing.”
“Is it too late to find someone to take?”
“No, they don’t need final numbers till Monday.”
“Well, then. Take someone else and flirt like crazy in front of him. Show him you can do better and that you’ve already moved on.”
“But I’m not ready to date. It’s only been two weeks, and I’m still at the feeling-sorry-for-myself stage.”
“I’ll go with you,” Sean offered. “I could be your date. We could pretend we’ve got together and are a couple now.”
“Yeah?” Justin looked thoughtful. “Are you sure?”
Duh. It would hardly be much of a sacrifice to flirt with Justin all night. It would actually be a relief not to have to hide the way he felt for a change.
“Sure,” Sean replied. “I think I can manage to fake that I’m arse-over-tit infatuated with you. As long as it’s only for a few hours.”
“Gee, thanks.” Justin rolled his eyes. “You really know how to make an already-wounded ego feel better. But if you’re up for it, we should totally do it. Andy was always jealous of you before you went away. He saw you as competition because we lived together and were so close. I’d love to see his face when I walk in with you on my arm. I think he’ll hate it even if he’s moved on.”
“Okay.” Sean rubbed his hands together, excited at the prospect of getting to piss off Andy. “Let’s do it! Text your friend Jess back and tell her you’re in—with a hot date.”
This is an adorable friends-to-lovers romance.
Justin and Sean have been friends since they were seven years old. Justin came out early–mostly because everyone assumed he was gay anyhow–But Sean only came out a couple of years ago. Justin felt betrayed when he learned Sean was gay, because he’d fancied Sean for ages and felt he would have been a safe harbor, plus he would have loved to experiment with him when they were close together.
Well, it’s Christmas time and Justin is newly single–what with that cheater Andy revealing all two weeks ago. He’s about to call off his plans to attend the company Christmas party when Sean arrives and offers to go as his pretend boyfriend–to make Andy jealous. Sean has just returned from a 9 month trip, and he’s camping on Justin’s sofa until he gets a job and a flat. That said, he’s not unhappy about the close quarters. He’s wanted Justin for years, but Justin was always dating a bloke and the timing was never right.
Their time is close and friendly, with each man surreptitiously checking out the other, and their date is, well, super extra hot. All that closeness, and dancing and snogging…leads to more. But, can Justin and Sean turn the one night of passion into a relationship?
I loved the realistic feel to this one. These guys are so conscious of their friendship, and don’t want to harm it in any way. They are totally gone for each other, and hold back and hold back and hold back–until they just cannot hold back any longer. Each is afraid he loves the other more than he is loved, and each is completely and totally wrong. It’s the perfect twist and the best Christmas for each of them.
Also, HAWT. They coulda lit up the Christmas tree with their passion. This is a fast read, but doesn’t skimp on the feels.
Click the Rafflecopter link for your chance to win a backlist book from Jay Northcote and a $10 gift card.
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Good luck and keep reading my friends!
About the Author:
Jay lives just outside Bristol in the West of England, with her husband, two children, and two cats. She comes from a family of writers, but she always used to believe that the gene for fiction writing had passed her by. She spent years only ever writing emails, articles, or website content. One day, she decided to try and write a short story–just to see if she could–and found it rather addictive. She hasn’t stopped writing since.