Title: Dating In Retrospect
Author: Lila Leigh Hunter
Series: States Of Love
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Release Date: 02-15-2017
Genre(s): M/M Contemporary Romance
Page Count: 107
Heat Level: 1 flame out of 5
Rating: 2.5 stars out of 5
Giving the commencement speech at his alma mater doesn’t fit Clay Keller’s meticulous schedule. As Chief Executive Officer of Travel Mogul—the largest travel connoisseur company on the West Coast—he has no time to get back in touch with his country roots. He left fifteen years ago without a second look, but a medical scare makes him change his mind about the speech and brings him face-to-face with his only regret.
Time always moves slower in Southeastern Iowa, and Aaron Grant loves it. He’s added solar farms to the Grant Lanes portfolio and has been teaching at the local university for a decade. The last thing he needs is to have his tenure application compromised by the return of his ex-boyfriend. If he had known who the commencement speaker would be, he would never have volunteered to be the administration liaison.
A proposal—to date for a year—will help them discover that time changes a person, even when everything else stays the same.
I feel like I have to preface this review by saying… I didn’t think it was as bad as a lot of the other reviews out there are saying. I do, however, completely understand where the low reviews are coming from – but for some reason, there was something in the plot that I was able to overlook all of the errors. But I digress…
This is a boomerang love story, of a wealthy travel executive coming back to his alma mater and runs into his ex whom he left without word, several years prior. The ex stayed in his hometown, working on his family’s farm in the middle of Iowa and teaching at the college. On its premise, it has promise. But it just wasn’t executed very well. We don’t know why he comes back. We don’t know what he really does. There’s just SO much information missing.
And there are just strange loose ends that seem important, but don’t come together until later – and by then they miss the mark (the medical “scare” is an example). In addition, neither character was deep or had… character. At the very beginning, I actually was liking both of them and had hope they would develop throughout the story, but they didn’t – they literally stayed exactly where they were. I didn’t learn anything new about either of them (of any substance), except when we meet Aaron’s dad. For me, the redeeming part of this story was Adam’s family and experience. For some reason, it warmed my heart and made me want to finish the entire story to see what happens.
I think there’s hope here for future books by Hunter, but this one just needed to be tighter and deeper for me to recommend it. While I thought it was ok, it’s definitely only for a small segment – those of us who love the Iowa setting and a father being a staunch supporter, putting a bow on the story.