Title: The Blueprint
Author: S.E. Harmon
Series: The Game #1
Publisher: Dreampsinner Press
Release Date: 3/13/2018
Genre(s): M/M Bisexual, M/M Gay-For-You, M/M Contemporary Romance, M/M Sports Romance, M/M Coming Out
Page Count: 270
Heat Level: 4 flames out of 5
Rating: 4.5 stars out of 5
Kelly Cannon is satisfied with his life. He has friends, a wonderful family, and a great job. But his love life has reached a new level of pitiful. Why? Well, his heart decided to break all the rules. Don’t fall in love with a straight guy. And definitely don’t fall in love with your best friend.
NFL standout Britton “Blue” Montgomery has pressure coming at him from all sides. From his father, who’s only interested in Blue’s football career. From his coaches, who just want him to play without getting injured again. From the fans. From his agent. And from his mother, who has popped up on the radar after leaving his family years before. And now his relationship with Kelly is on shaky ground, and that frightens Blue more than anything.
When Kelly admits he’s in love with Blue, bonds are tested, and Blue has to decide what’s really important. He doesn’t want to lose the number-one person in his life, but the cost to keep Kelly close might be more than he’s willing to pay.
It’s a good thing his nickname is the Blueprint—it’s time to draft a new set of plans.
4.5 stars- it almost pains me to not give this 5 stars because I loved so much about it and devoured it
I first read this author last year and loved that release so much, I immediately bought up her back catalog. Following the announcement of the upcoming release of this title, I was very excited- sports romance combined with friend-to-lovers promised to tick many of my boxes. When I started The Blueprint I was enthralled; heck, for most of the book I had a crazy difficult time putting it down. And yet, there was something that didn’t quite measure up for me, especially when compared to the author’s other romances. Don’t get me wrong, I still thoroughly enjoyed The Blueprint, will recommend it to others, and read it again. The characters were great, the flow and writing smooth, the banter excellent, the humor on point, and the chemistry palpable, but it’s not quite a 5-star read despite having many 5-star aspects.
I love friends-to-lovers romances because of their ability to convey maximum levels of chemistry from an early point without rushing the relationship development. Kelly and Blue certainly had that strong connection from the start and I enjoyed seeing the emotional bond and unyielding friendship develop as they pursued something more. I also loved that their friendship went so deep for so long that many of their co-workers, family, and friends never questioned their commitment to one another, even before they were an official couple. This certainly wasn’t a quiet, unknown bond the two shared. Those aspects lent credence to the men’s relationship. What I didn’t love was the back and forth. Initially, Blue’s reticence made sense given his career, his past, and that he had never really looked at Kelly as anything beyond a best friend before now. I liked that things moved more slowly because it gave time for things to fall into place with both men. However, after a while Blue’s back and forth combined with both men’s failure to communicate wore on me and pulled me out of the story a bit. I did like how the couple resolved their issues and that Kelly eventually stood up for himself, I just wish it hadn’t been after I grew frustrated with how Blue and Kelly treated each other and discounted their own and their friend’s feelings. That said, I was wholeheartedly invested in the characters and, even when irritated with them, I couldn’t stop reading. It’s worth noting that while there are some football elements to this book, the sports focus is tertiary to the characters and their relationship. What I’m saying is if you’re primarily looking for a football romance, this may not fit the bill. I think fans of friends-to-lovers and those who enjoy fast, fun banter will enjoy The Blueprint and I most definitely recommend it.