Wet Dream

4 Stars

This was a fun read. The humour was great the pacing was on. I genuinely liked this book. What I liked most about it was that it didn’t have all that annoying first-time angst stuff. Liam handles it, at least for the first half of the book, with an ‘it is what it is and just goes with it’ type of attitude, while simultaneously having reservations. This I loved because in most books when there is doubt, that doubt turns into inaction. I like that here it shows that you can go forward with something and still be afraid at the same time and fear doesn’t default to walking away from the situation. Dirk, the love interest, is pretty much just himself throughout the whole book. He wants something and goes for it without the annoying, pushy, almost stalker vibe some guys have in romance novels.

My first real issue is that occasionally things that didn’t need much explanation got explained. Like when Liam goes to find this mystery brother and that brother is high out of his mind. This kid is 18. I am sure the explanation of how getting high affects people in different ways is not lost on him. There is no way this is the first time he has ever gotten high based on the book’s description of him. So Dirk, his uncle, explaining this seemed odd, and the boy’s reaction of surprise to it also seemed odd. If all of this is so new and a first-time event, that makes the casualness of it all feed off, but since it rolled over so nicely this did not give off first-time signals.

Then, after this, there’s another explanation of how youth will be youth and learning from mistakes and stuff that was briefly explained which tacked on more. If Dirk flat-out ignored the teen, and then followed it up with how he had also experimented in his youth and continued into the house not looking back under the assumption Liam had experimented with things as well. It would’ve sold the introspection of Liam realising how different his childhood was from the perceived normal. A cleaner and punchier way to have him second-guess where he was as an adult based on this weird to him, but normal to Dirk encounter.

Liam’s transition from being solid in who he thought he was to learning he’d never actually tried to figure out who he was, to then finally finding himself was fun to read. The only thing I did not like about it was the idea that he couldn’t be a functional, dedicated businessman while simultaneously learning that he’s open to spontaneity and chaos. There is no reason he can’t be both. The way it was written gave the impression he couldn’t be the guy who loved the intensity and structure of his day job and also love the freedom and escape of being with Dirk. Both are totally acceptable personalities and duality is a thing. He can be both and still be a whole person without having to pick a side.

My other problem was the Wet Dream aspect of the book. The first time I wasn’t sure if Liam was dreaming since how the previous scene had played out it was logical that it might have gone here. It wasn’t the only one I had this problem with. Why this didn’t work is because every steamy scene was a dream sequence so when the real one happens at the end I couldn’t enjoy the payoff because it wasn’t written any different from the dream sequences. By the time I realised it wasn’t a dream it was too late. The ones that are dreams needed to be much more obvious as dreams so that as a reader my brain would not become conditioned to think every steamy passage was a dream. This would then have made it extremely obvious when the first real one happens that it was not a dream. So, again, the payoff wasn’t that big cause I had to be sure it wasn’t a dream which took a while. As It’s a very big part of the book, it’s in the title, it was a significant enough technical error to affect my experience of the book.

For the most part the cliches of romance that drive me crazy don’t exist. At least not at annoying levels. But one did came up in the second half of the book and was strong enough to take notice of. The ‘I have to go back home so this can’t work’ idea. Especially when one is probably a billionaire who can do his job anywhere. Can even build a new office if he wants to.

The idea that distance is this important for plot tension in romance boggles me. If you are that into each other you’re not even going to try? Long-distance is a thing. Some people date from separate countries for years before finally getting together. There’s no real reason not to try and more importantly, good tension can arise from finding out through trying that it won’t work thus forcing the characters to either move on, or find a solution to the fact they do not work apart. I dunno but this avenue for tension being so common in romance always makes me think ‘so not trying is a thing?’

And then, what really makes this seem off, is that the younger brother he never knew about does exactly that. Just hops a plane or a train, can’t remember, and shows up there without even bothering to tell his uncle he was doing it. So if the boy can do it, why can’t Liam or Dirk. Clearly this distance barrier isn’t really an issue and it’d be way more fun to see them try and fail and have to deal with that truth, or to try and succeed and move on with plans to one day live in the same area, but not trying at all is an odd choice for me to get on board with.

And lastly, just like I said earlier about Liam having to choose a character type instead of blending them together to create a whole, newer person, him being the one to move was frustrating. If this were were-fiction with an alpha omega dynamic or a hallmark romance, this breathes so much of the established character who gets their world changed by love having to be the one to give it all up for the guy. Why can’t the love interest upend their lives? So now, not only can he not love his job with the same tenacity he did before Dirk, he also has to give up the life he knows to move to where the other guy lives.

For clarity, I am here for him helping Liam start to open up more businesses and branching out. Even though he’s used to company takeovers this is still within Liam’s wheelhouse. But he can help and still run his own company. Who knows this could create an entirely new branch for his already well-established business. But the idea that he uproots his life because this new life is who he is now, again reads like it’s not possible for him to be both. Books are fantasies and escapism but you can have the big romantic ending with a little realistic compromise or even an epilogue, which is fifty-fifty in its success, that explains after a few years they figured out what works best for them and settled in.

That’s it really. The development of Liam’s character and how Dirk was a catalyst for that was handled well which is a big part of what drives the story, and the only other big part of the book was the wet dreams that were not handled as well. Since most of my other issues don’t really become issues until those two things are well established it wasn’t enough to derail what turned out to be a fun and entertaining read. If a bit of troubled childhood, turned into adult revelations and self-growth via splashes of humour and really sexy should’ve had their shirt off more often tattoed love interests, is your thing, then this book delivers. I definitely recommend you add this to your reading list for this year.

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