Thursday, August 23, 2018

Lily Morton - Rule Breaker

Is it really wrong to want to murder your boss?
Dylan has worked for Gabe for two years. Two long years of sarcastic comments. Two long years of insults, and having to redo the coffee pot four times in the mornings to meet his exacting standards.
Not surprisingly he has devoted a lot of time to increasingly inventive ways to murder Gabe. From stabbing him with a cake fork, to garrotting him with his expensive tie, Dylan has thought of everything.
However, a chance encounter opens his eyes to the attraction that has always lain between them, concealed by the layers of antipathy. There are only two problems - Gabe is still a bastard, and he makes wedding planners look like hardened pessimists.
But what happens when Dylan starts to see the real Gabe? What happens when he starts to fall in love with the warm, wary man that he sees glimpses of as the days pass?
Because Gabe is still the same commitment shy, cold man that he’s always been, or is he? Has Dylan had the same effect on Gabe, and has his solid gold rule of no commitment finally been broken? With his heart taken Dylan desperately needs to know, but will he get hurt trying to find the answers?

Comment: With such a long blurb I don't think I need to add anything else to try to explain this story. I got interested in it mostly because the following 2nd book, whose premise seemed intriguing but I like reading things in order if i manage it so after reading the blurb to this first story in the Mixed Messages trilogy, I liked the idea of starting the books in order.

Basically, this is the story of Dylan, he is the first person narrator, and he works for a very demanding boss, Gabe, who doesn't seem to have any problems saying things like they are. Still, Dylan is attracted to him and tries to be a good employer even if that means dealing with the boss' boyfriend the annoying Fletcher.
As one would expect in these stories, a sudden happening in their lives makes them start seeing each other differently and the romance develops from there...

I really liked this story, especially because I have this almost dislike for first person narrators in romance, which I tend to find impossibly limitative. However, the author has managed to characterize Dylan in a way that makes him engaging and interesting to follow or to sympathize with. I liked knowing his thoughts and I especially liked being able to understand his state of mind in certain situations.

The romance, as we can imagine, takes center stage and it's the main focus of this. Yes, there are several clichés (the boss-employer relationship is one but I sort of like these when well done) and I'd say that the one that stands out is the one where, of course, Gabe has a not so happy past which influences his behavior now and then Dylan comes from a happy and supporting family and that explains in part why he is so down to earth but emotionally stable.
It can be so easy to let this go into unlikely drama territory ut I think the emotional baggage both of them dealt with was well done, not exaggerated and still allowed me to think about certain issues and shed one or two tears...

The sexual content was not over the top, it was on the page but not in every two pages, sex. I liked how these scenes seemed to have been an extension of the plot and not there just to gives a view to that side of them. I bet others would say differently, though.

I also liked Dylan's friends and family (very obvious they contrasted with those more often surrounding Gabe) and his relationship with his parents was great. There is some conflict in all this but the author did it tastefully. 
The professional situations were also done well for the most part (in one or two situations I don't think everyday people would behave like that) and I liked how the pace was. 
It was very easy to just keep reading and I mut say that, since this is the first book I read by Lily Morton, her writing style felt great and it's with good perspectives I'll read the rest of this trilogy.
Grade: 8/10

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