This one started off well for me but I couldn’t really stick with it. A wrong number that turns into an angsty romance was a good idea in theory but didn’t quite work. One thing that bugged me is when Josh first calls ‘Ian’ he spells his name E A N. I’m assuming this is because this is how the name is spelt. It doesn’t stop there. When they first meet he also says ‘Ian with an E’, thus confirming that this is how ‘Ian’ spells his name. If this is a thing why through the entire book is his name spelt the way it is normally spelt which wouldn’t have caused Josh’s confusion to begin with. Unless the author had intentions of spelling Ian, Ean, I honestly don’t see the point in this. It genuinely confused me.
That aside what I loved about this, as a person with anxiety myself, was that Ian was def relateable. Everything is indeed a reason to panic and overthink. I mean anything can happen with all the humans out there. Hiding in one’s room/apartment is a totally acceptable response. It was just little things like how the author seemed to focus on whether Ian was gay or not that brought me out of the story.
If he had never done anything with a guy before fine, but he had. Every time he was ‘this doesn’t prove I’m gay’ made me respond with a who cares kind of attitude. He liked Josh. Josh liked him. They did adult things together in bed. Why is Ian even thinking about this to the point it’s a major plot point? And again the fact he had done stuff with other men before begs the question of why is he questioning his sexuality like it even matters. There is just no way he could have had sexual encounters with both men and women and not once considered his own sexuality. I’d only find this believable if he’d never done anything along those lines with another human, but clearly, he understands those types of feelings so he must’ve thought/had a preference for the people he did things with.
Ian lives out of his home and has trouble making friends. It’s hard to imagine someone with issues this severe not only being able to get into adult situations with another human, but also doing this without agonising over the variables of their attraction to other humans. Some sort of mild panic would ensue about whether the person, either male or female was worth leaving the safety of his home thus bringing up attraction which is somewhat attached to sexual preference.
Also, the bit where Josh just blurted out his personal information seemed out of place. I reread the paragraph a few times for any lead-in, anything that clearly stated now is the time for reveals but nothing. Josh has decided to follow through on a difficult decision then meets up with Ian. They hug and say they missed each other and instead of heading off towards the big decision, he just blurts out ‘when I was nine my’ and I’m like what does this info have to do with the present scene and where was the lead in that something was going to happen. At the very least on the drive to the police station they could’ve segued into this through another conversation. As it was it felt abrupt and out of place and gave a ‘why now/here’ kind of feeling.
I read this entire book waiting for some supernatural/fantasy element. Ian’s dog talks in full sentences. Ian doesn’t speak to him, get nothing in return, and then answer his own questions in typical human to dog interaction fashion. It’s hard to get on board with this unless Josh has a dog that can telepathically talk to him as well. Everyone thinks their animals are talking to them. They are in their own way but once that gap is bridged from nonverbal to verbal there has to be some explanation as to how. Unless Ian himself possesses some sort of supernatural abilities it isn’t possible. Bringing the idea of talking to our animals to life is an excellent idea but ultimately it has to be explained how this is happening otherwise it feels awkward.
And, like some others have said, the ending just sorta ends. Ian insisting Josh go home to his dog is fine. Him not saying he wasn’t ready to let him in his home was the reason, was odd. I honestly expected Josh to walk right in because Ian is very clear on his boundaries otherwise so not mentioning it was sign enough he was ready. Them eating outside the door was kind of sweet but, I dunno, it just didn’t seem to end. After such a long journey, Josh not being allowed to take the step inside the house was a bit of a let down for both him and the readers. It would’ve been much more effective had Ian just said this ahead of time and the two went straight to Josh’s to enjoy dinner. Especially since it’s the end of the book so readers would be expecting something more momentous which is not what happened. It’s was clear to see it was meant to be this nice sweet, Josh isn’t leaving and they are still eating together moment, but again, since it was the end, it just didn’t seem big enough. Especially since this isn’t the last book in the series.
Though this was a nice sweet story, a lot of the character/plot choices and the timing of them just seemed odd so I couldn’t really dig into this one. All the groundwork of awesome was there, it just didn’t execute well enough for me. That being said I wouldn’t be surprised if people still like it. It definitely has that nice, feelgood, romantic touch throughout even if not necessarily written as well as it could’ve been.