To listeners of The Vers, a queer podcast I host with my three best friends, I’m known as The Realist—I accept life the way it is, believe in honesty over sugarcoating, and okay, I can maybe be a little bossy.
If you asked The Vers guys, they’d tell you I’m a caretaker who’s always thinking of others, but they also give over-the-top hugs and don’t believe me when I say feelings are the worst.
It’s why I have no business offering Kai Lewis a place to stay when he’s in need. He’s a flirt who makes no secret about wanting in my bed…somewhere I’d like to have him if he wasn’t the employee of one of my closest friends. But he’s too trusting and leaps before he thinks, so at least he won’t get taken advantage of if he’s with me.
Now he’s always around, wearing shorts that leave nothing to the imagination and saying he wants to take care of me because I’m always doing it for others. It’s not long before I can’t resist him—a man who likes listening in the bedroom but is stubborn in other situations.
Kai is sweet and funny and gets me to open up to him. Maybe this whole relationship thing wouldn’t be so bad…if he wasn’t nine years younger…and leaving Southern California soon…or if I had any idea what I was doing.
The Realist is an age-gap, forced-proximity romance with a bossy realist and a sunshiny flirt who has Marcus wrapped around his finger.
If you read books 1 and 2, you already know Marcus and Kai. Marcus the super successful real estate agent who is always there for his friends in a myriad of ways. And Kai, the super cute twink who works at Declan’s bar.
On a bit of a whim, when Kai is about to lose his housing and move back home with mom and dad, Marcus invites him to live at his house. And it’s not like it’s a small place. Now Marcus and Kai have flirted hard when they saw each other, but it is Marcus who holds back. Because Kai is a bit younger and because he is an employee of his best friend. Now he can add roommates to the list which makes him untouchable. HA!
I really enjoyed seeing firsthand the family dynamics of both men. Kai’s family is far from rich. Probably a solid lower middle class. But they ooze love. They enjoy spending time together and his mother complains she doesn’t see him enough. Whereas Marcus’ parents are quite cold, constantly cancel plans and take work calls when they are together.
These family dynamics really play a role in their lives. We’ve all seen Marcus with the other 3 guys. He loves and loves hard, but he isn’t demonstrative at all and hates being called out on his soft side. Whereas Kai is super demonstrative, but his defense mechanism is the whole “not a relationship guy”, when really you know he wants what his parents and siblings have.
Honestly, I feel like Marcus toyed with Kai a bit too much. Flirting to the point that Kai thought they were getting somewhere, but pulling back at the last second. And being proud of it when Kai was upset.
Other than that, they really gelled as a couple. They are very yin yang. Including their families- with Kai’s family recognizing that Marcus didn’t have anything like that himself.
I also appreciated that Kai was willing to make a huge decision for himself, without falling back on Marcus. Showed a maturity that he hasn’t yet had.
In the last and final book coming, I’d really like to see Marcus loosen up some. Now that he and Kai are together and happy, it’s time for him to jump in the pool as well.
4 pieces of eye candy