Fantasy Mystery Romance Comics Non-Fiction

Boyfriend Material

Wednesday, September 2, 2020

Boyfriend Material (2020) Alexis Hall

Boyfriend MaterialThis story was an utter delight.

I started it mid afternoon, and pretty much didn’t set it down until I’d finished it–past my bedtime.

Luc O’Donnell is a mess. Because both of his parents were semi-famous musicians, he’s always been in the eye of the press, and when his relationship went up in flames, the ensuing disaster all but ruined his life.

The rational version of Luc, the one from the parallel universe where my dad wasn’t a famous shithead and my ex-boyfriend hadn’t sold all my secrets to Piers Morgan, tried to tell me I was overreacting. Unfortunately, I wasn’t listening.

But now he has a job at a charity working to save the Dung Beetle (CRAPP).

Dr. Fairclough would argue that homeless people are human beings and, thus, plentiful and ecologically somewhere between insignificant and a net detriment. Unlike dung beetles, which are irreplaceable. Which is why she looks at the data and I talk to the press.

His mother and his friends have remained steadfast and everything is mostly ok–until a literal stumble ends with him in the tabloids and in need of rehabilitating his image.

“I thought you said I wasn’t going to get fired.”

“As long as the Beetle Drive is successful, you may go to whatever bars you please and wear whatever mammalian appendages you like.”


“But right now”— she cast me a cold glance—“ your public image as some kind of barebacking, coke-snorting, buttockless-trouser-wearing pervert has scared away three of our biggest donors, and I need not remind you, our donor list is straying perilously close to single digits.”

Maybe not the best time to tell her about the emails I’d received this morning. “So what am I supposed to do?”

“Rehabilitate yourself fast. You need to go back to being the sort of harmless sodomite that Waitrose shoppers can feel good about introducing to their left-wing friends and smug about introducing to their right-wing friends.”

It doesn’t go well.

This books is marvelous. Utterly marvelous. It is snarky and angsty and funny and had me laughing and sniffling in turns.

It’s over-the-top, and his friends are ridiculous, but is also slowly peels away the layers Luc has been building around himself till you see that he is an absolute mess, but trying to hide if from his friends for the past five years.

The scene when his friends come over to help him clean his apartment is the point you realize he really is just as much of a mess as he had been joking he was, and the damage done by his ex and by the press was heart-breakingly deep.

This book is told only from Luc’s POV, and that is perfect for this story. To Luc, Oliver is pretty much perfect, and with Luc’s damage, it’s easy to miss just how human Oliver is as well, until suddenly Oliver’s damage is right there in your face.

It’s just lovely AND there is no on-the-page boinking! All but perfect!

Publisher: Sourcebooks Casablanca

Rating: 9.5/10


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