Title: Like a Lover
Author: Jay Northcote
Narrator: Mark Steadman
Publisher: Jaybird Press
Release Date: 8/15/2016
Genre(s): M/M Contemporary Romance
Page Count: 202
Listening Length: 4 hours and 47 minutes
Heat Level: 3 flames out of 5
Rating: 3 stars out of 5
“Josh has a plan: get through uni with a good degree and no debts. Focused on his goals, he’s working as an escort to pay his way. He enjoys the no-strings sex and doesn’t have the time or inclination for a relationship. Falling in love definitely isn’t part of the deal—especially not with a client.
When Rupert meets Josh in a bar, he’s smitten on sight. He’s never paid for sex before, but when Josh propositions him, he can’t resist. He should have known one night would never be enough. Luckily for him, he has an inheritance to support his addiction to Josh, because his job in IT wouldn’t cover the cost.
With each appointment the lines get increasingly blurred. Something is developing between them that feels more like a relationship than a business transaction, but they come from different worlds and to go from client-and-escort to lovers seems impossible. If they want a future together, Josh and Rupert have a lot to overcome.”
Review: “I’ve realised that I like Ms. Northcote’s books best as audiobooks.
I vaguely recall having started reading Like A Lover immediately after finishing the first book in the series, but putting it in my on-holds list. Sad thing was, I didn’t even realise this until I was halfway through the audiobook having had this sense of deja vu constantly. I can even pinpoint right about where I must have lost interest.
Maybe I was doing too many book binges at the time to just spend enough time with one book. Read and get through it. With audiobooks, you don’t really have much of a choice. You can hardly skim-read them. Though for future reference I can increase the speed.
I like stories where big, huge, enormously life-changing (hopefully for the better) revelations kind of sneak up on you and you realise that they were some time in the making. This book was kind of like that – to a certain extent. Yes, it’s a lot about Josh and Rupert getting their man love on (seriously, I was listening to this book on my way from and to work – and I consciously turned down the volume in case someone heard what these two were getting into). But, this as I read this book I did feel that this theme was kind of underlying it all and that made me a happy listener.
Realising chapter by chapter, day by day, that the other person is more than just that what you think of him as.
Realising that putting people in boxes labeled with their roles in your lives isn’t how this world works.
This is Josh and Rupert’s story.
A story between an escort and his client.
Here, you can see Josh start losing interest in his other clients, once he starts seeing the vast difference it makes once you’re doing someone for something other than money. He has so much trouble letting the walls he’s put around his heart down, constantly pushing Rupert away when he gives an indication that there could be something more.
Rupert annoyed me at times. Falling for someone and not being able to properly express himself, constantly thinking that it’s one-sided and that money is the only reason Josh would be near him – though that’s completely on Josh, pulling away without completely understanding what’s wrong.
The disparity between how the characters are when it’s their point of view, and when it’s from the other’s point of view is big. Though it highlights how they’re both putting on masks trying to make their feelings seems less than they are. Which then makes it good.
Other than this underlying theme to the book though – I have trouble seeing much plot, to be honest. It’s an enjoyable book, but the way these characters are portrayed is quite limited. They have certain characteristics and it seems like Ms. Northcote had trouble moving past what she’s put them in. Perhaps it’s because there’s… too much sex?
It kind of started feeling like the development of their relationship was just in the pauses between the sex. I think that might have also been the reason I put aside the book when I started reading it (and ended up halfway into the book before realising this).
I mean, yes. This is the relationship between a sex-worker and a client, but it felt a bit like there was too little character and relationship development because the sex was overshadowing it. And when that tends to happen, I end up skimming – and I don’t like doing that to books in general, so it end up on my on-holds.
Still. I liked this book and I would recommend the audiobook version to all who don’t mind the above mentioned points. Regardless, definitely try Ms. Northcote’s books in their audiobook version – they have this certain “act out in front of me” quality that, for me, make her stories more vivid (and paranoid that someone might hear what you’re listening to).”