Arlo Wright’s introduction to his sexuality came when he saw his older brother’s best friend, Jack Cooper, in his sweaty football kit. Unfortunately, he didn’t have long to enjoy the revelation because he promptly knocked himself out on a table.
Relations between them have never really moved on from that auspicious beginning. Arlo is still clumsy, and Jack is still as handsome and unobtainable as ever.
However, things look like they’re starting to change when Arlo finds himself sharing a room with Jack while on holiday in Amsterdam at Christmas. Will the festive spirit finally move them towards each other, or is Arlo just banging his head against a wall this time?
From bestselling author, Lily Morton comes a warm romantic comedy set in chilly Amsterdam
“Sorry,” I mumble.
He chuckles. “For what? You slept well.”
“That’ll be the wine,” I say. “I didn’t think I’d drunk that much, but I was obviously being drunkenly optimistic.”
“Well, you didn’t drink heavily if you compare yourself to Mel Gibson. A vat is nothing these days.”
I laugh and groan as pain slices through my eyeballs. “Shit.” I press my fingers against my eyes. “I need some paracetamol.”
“I’ll get you some,” he says.
I force my eyes open in time to see him throw the sheets back and get out of bed. For a wild second, I think he’s naked, but then the sheet clears his middle, and I see he’s actually wearing blue-checked pyjama shorts that are hanging low on his hips. In the bathroom, he rummages through his shaving bag, and I can’t help but eye the view. Broad shoulders, narrow hips, and lots of lean muscle that reflects how much he loves running.
He paces back to me, carrying a bottle of water and two tablets. I take the tablets, gulp the water, and watch as he strides to the tea tray and switches the kettle on.
“I’ll make some coffee,” he says over his shoulder.
“Why can’t I always share a room with you?” I say plaintively. “You’re so much nicer than Tom. I was always stuck with him when I was a kid.”
“Well, it’s a fact that I don’t snore like Tom.”
“Jesus Christ,” I say with feeling, propping myself against the pillows. “I’ve never heard anything at that decibel unless it was a jumbo jet. I’m fucked if I can work out why Bee doesn’t stab him in his sleep.”
He chuckles. “It is bad. I spent a year rooming with him at uni, and at the end I must have looked like Beetlejuice.”
I laugh and reach out eagerly for the mug he hands me. I inhale the fragrant steam and look at him. “This smells good and not at all like normal hotel coffee.”
He shrugs. “This place has a cafetiere.”
“Not at all like the youth hostel, which is the last place where Tom and I shared a room. It’s also the place I hitchhiked home from rather than listen to him snore anymore.”
He laughs. “You all argue like cats and dogs. I never could understand it because we didn’t do that at my house.”
“No need when your parents can kill someone with the force of their glare,” I mutter.
He shakes his head and carries his drink over to his bed. The mug has a string and a little label hanging from it, so I’m pretty sure his drink is so powerfully healthy that it’s detoxing him through the china.
He settles back into bed. “You feeling better?”
I try a cautious shake of my head. “A bit,” I say judiciously. “Nothing that a nice greasy fry-up won’t cure. I’ll shower and get dressed in a minute and then we can go down to breakfast.”
“You sure you’re up to it?” he asks, eyeing me dubiously.
“Of course,” I say robustly. “Tom’s paid for this, and it’s probably cost more money than the European Union’s tea budget, so we’re going down there and eating every expensive morsel.”
This book was so fun!!!
Set in Amsterdam during Christmas, Tom assembles his best friends and his brother for a short holiday during which he will propose to his boyfriend, Bee. Tom’s best-best friend, Jack, and his brother, Arlo fly together from England to Amsterdam. And end up rooming together due to a mix up. No big deal, right? Except for Arlo’s gigantic crush on Jack.
I adore how so many of Lily Morton’s characters are snarky, witty, awkward, etc…but they are those things in different ways. I don’t feel like the same personalities are recycled book after book. Arlo is snarky because he is awkward, witty because he is sharp. His humor is different than other main characters.
Jack is stoic, but also warm. It seems as though he is humoring Arlo, but really he is trying to take care of him. Until the super drunken night.
No spoilers (but duh, it’s a romance with a HEA) I love that Jack didn’t hide from Tom. He’s a stand up guy who was crushing on Arlo as well and decided that Arlo was absolutely worth it.
The backdrop of Amsterdam at Christmas was just beautiful. They did fun, touristy things that really highlighted the city. All of the side characters- the other friends, the EX (dun, dun, DUN!), even their parents who show up at the end.
Sweet and Christmas-y and just wonderful.
4.5 Pieces of Eye Candy
Lily writes contemporary romance novels, and specialises in hot love stories with a good dose of humour.
Lily lives in sunny England with her husband and two children, all of whom claim that they haven’t had a proper conversation with her since she bought her first Kindle.
She has spent her life with her head full of daydreams and decided one day to just sit down and start writing about them. In the process she discovered that she actually loved writing, because how else could she get to spend her time with hot, funny men!
She loves chocolate and Baileys and the best of all creations – chocolate Baileys! Her lifetime’s ambition is to have a bath in peace without being shouted by one of her family.