Hey everyone!! I’m literally so, so happy to have had the chance to get an ARC for Boyfriend Material and I mean I was so excited to read this – and I was not disappointed!!!
Title: Boyfriend Material
Author: Alexis Hall
Genre: Adult Contemporary, LGBTQ+
Publisher: Sourcebooks Casablanca
Expected publication: July 7th 2020
Rep: LGBTQ+ main characters, South Asian side character
Length: 432 pages
Content warning: homophobia, emotionally abusive parents, cancer, eating disorder (mostly mentioned and not officially diagnosed)
Find this book on Goodreads
One (fake) boyfriend
Practically perfect in every way
Luc O’Donnell is tangentially–and reluctantly–famous. His rock star parents split when he was young, and the father he’s never met spent the next twenty years cruising in and out of rehab. Now that his dad’s making a comeback, Luc’s back in the public eye, and one compromising photo is enough to ruin everything.
To clean up his image, Luc has to find a nice, normal relationship…and Oliver Blackwood is as nice and normal as they come. He’s a barrister, an ethical vegetarian, and he’s never inspired a moment of scandal in his life. In other words: perfect boyfriend material. Unfortunately apart from being gay, single, and really, really in need of a date for a big event, Luc and Oliver have nothing in common. So they strike a deal to be publicity-friendly (fake) boyfriends until the dust has settled. Then they can go their separate ways and pretend it never happened.
But the thing about fake-dating is that it can feel a lot like real-dating. And that’s when you get used to someone. Start falling for them. Don’t ever want to let them go.
*Thank you to Netgalley and Sourcebooks Casablanca for giving me a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own.*
What I loved:
1 The humor. THE HUMOR. This book was so funny (although it might have also been a little bit me being tired from reading this all night) but I loved that!!! It was just really unexpected, and I have to admit I had to get used to the writing style at first, but damn there were some moments that had me scared I was going to wake up my mom from laughing so loud.
It’s easy. All I do is touch something, and whether it sparks joy or not, I just leave it exactly where it is.
2 The romance (duh). It took me a liiiiittle longer than expected to like their (fake-lol-it’s-actually-not-fake) romance, but once I was, I was rooting alllllll the way. Oliver and Luc won my heart and wouldn’t give it back!!! Honestly they’re so cute. Ahhhhh
And that observation led you to assault me with soft fruit?
3 The character development. Both of them have some pretty bad issues, and I really liked watching them try to resolve them. Of course, it’s not an easy road and by the end of the book they aren’t perfect, but you can tell they’re on their way to getting there.
4 The characters themselves. While they were both every once in a while during the book and a lot at the very beginning of said book very annoying, I came to love their annoyingness. huh. And honestly, all the side characters were so fun to read about as well! Both Oliver’s and Luc’s friends are so funny and Alex… well Alex is Alex. You’ll see what I mean once you read the book 😂
5 The plot. Just, the plot. I had an amazing time reading the whole entire time. Reading Experience? 1000000/10
What I didn’t like so much:
1 there’s this whole part at the beginning where Luc meets this guy in a bar. It’s really the whole first chapter of the story, and I get it has some crucial information to make us understand the situation a little bit better, it was very unsettling how unimportant that guy was in the rest of the book. Like, VERY unimportant. And I don’t really get why we had to spend so much time with it when… almost nothing happened after.
2 Okay, so this is going to be a rather personal complaint. This can be totally fine for you, or like me you’ll find it super annoying. Actually, this is the case for point (3) too, so there’s your disclaimer. As a non-native english speaker and probably more importantly and non-British english speaker, this book was just too much… British. And I say this because a lot of words that were used are (at least I think) unknown by the general non-British public, and it was getting annoying having to google things all the time because even my Kindle dictionary didn’t know the words.
Some of the words, for example barrister, I just didn’t know probably because I’m not a native english speaker. But, isn’t that the same as lawyer? Why not just use lawyer? (again, this is definitely a me problem).
Examples: moreish, gormlessly, to ablute (which is just to shower?), spurious (I don’t think this one is British, but come on, when’s the last time you heard someone actually use that word out loud?), hitherto (that words is used at least four or five times in the book. why), and many more 😂
3 THE FRENCH. I’M SO SORRY BUT THE FRENCH. If you’re going to use a language you don’t know in your book, then at least ask someone native in the language to read it over. I mean, “mon cher” is spelled “mon chere” at LEAST five times in the book. It’s not a typo or a mistake if it’s repeated FIVE. TIMES. And it doesn’t stop there. French people laugh with me now, why in the world would an adult ever say the words “caca boudin”? They wouldn’t, that’s the whole point. Only 2 year olds would say this.
4 And I decided to add this in a different point, but… the amount of french stereotypes in this book is absolutely insane. Luc’s French mother seemed to come straight out of a fifties black and white french movie – sorry to break it to you, but most French people aren’t actually like that 😭 also, this masterpiece:
And she made some concerned French noises, and then suggested I come over.
She made another French noise.
5 I’ve already said a little bit about this, but as much as I loved the humor in this book, there were times where it just fell completely flat for me and times where it got a bit old. This book was still 100% HILARIOUS. There were just times where… it wasn’t. For example, like I’ve said, the level of Alex’s stupidity is funny. Similarly, Bridget always having insane problems at her job was funny. Once, twice, three times. But after?? It’s just not funny anymore…
Ok so in conclusion I do have to say that even though I ranted a lot more about the bad than the good, the good still, by far, surpassed the bad. I had the best time reading this, I loved the characters and their quirkiness and the romance was great plus I literally laughed my way through half the book. This is a book I definitely recommend!!!
And if we let happy things make us unhappy when they stopped, there would be no point having happy things.
Do you think you will read this when it comes out? The release day is only in about a week!! Also, if you had an ARC as well, I would really love to hear your thoughts on this!!
Stay safe everyone!! Sending you lots of love!!! ❤️
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