Blue Ribbon Rating: 4.5 out of 5Original Review Link
For ten years, Quinn kept his partner’s secret while Peter stayed firmly in the closet. In return, he gets sucker punched by Peter when he informs Quinn that he not only cheated on him, but that he is leaving Quinn to marry the woman he got pregnant. Quinn, who has been a part of Peter’s family for a long time, is expected to put up a good front and keep Peter’s secret. Quinn dutifully does…until he’s asked to be the baby’s godfather. With the baptism only a day away, Quinn has had enough. He’s going to show up and make a statement – and what better statement can there be than showing up with the young, gorgeous, eyeliner-wearing guy he picks up at a club?
Eli is nothing like Peter, which doesn’t just mean good things for Quinn in bed. Eli’s quick, kinky and can put on a good show. He convinces Peter’s family that he and Quinn are madly in love. What neither man expects is for Eli’s lie to slowly turn to truth. But each man has baggage from their past that just might ruin their shot at a future.
“What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger” is a saying that holds true for both heroes in BAD BOYFRIEND. Author K.A. Mitchell puts both Quinn and Eli through the wringer, but manages to do so without ever dragging the buoyant BAD BOYFRIEND down. Quinn has a horrible ex that definitely deserves to be punched – repeatedly. Eli’s background is even harder. He’s been on his own since high school when his parents threw him out for being gay. He’s made his own way in the world, refusing to play by any rules but his own and – when he’s with Quinn – he is never anyone but his true self. I love all these things about Eli. Ms. Mitchell broke my heart and then made me smile with both Eli and Quinn. It was easy to become invested in BAD BOYFRIEND because I wanted these two to get the happily ever after they deserve with one another. The only thing that pulled me out of the story a bit was the emphasis on the age gap between Eli and Quinn. Quinn is thirty-five to Eli’s not-quite-twenty-three, but maturity-wise, they aren’t too far apart. Still, a number of people – including those that know Eli best – harped on their ages which drew me out of the story after a while. It didn’t lessen my interest in Eli and Quinn’s love story, however.
BAD BOYFRIEND shines when Ms. Mitchell focuses on her heroes, but that doesn’t mean that there aren’t secondary characters worth smiling over. Kellan and Nate, the heroes of Ms. Mitchell’s first BAD IN BALTIMORE book, BAD COMPANY, are there for Eli when he needs them the most. You don’t have to read BAD COMPANY to enjoy BAD BOYFRIEND, but if you have, you’ll no doubt enjoy – as I did – revisiting Kellan and Nate.
BAD BOYFRIEND is a fast-paced, entertaining romance with red-hot love scenes and two heroes who are sure to win readers’ hearts. I adored this book, and I can’t wait to re-read Eli and Quinn’s story soon!
Note: My review was written for Romance Junkies and is cross-posted here courtesy of Romance Junkies.