Slow-Play by Carol Lynne
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
The Poker Night series features a group of 6 gay men (Zac, Bobby, Trey, Angelo, Marco and Kent) who have been friends for almost 4 years and get together to play poker, drink beer and have fun every other Saturday. As the series starts, they're all single, but it's obvious that each of them is destined to find their HEA as the series progresses.
The 2nd book in the series, Slow-Play, is Bobby's story and picks up right after Texas Hold 'Em ended.
Bobby Quinn comes from a wealthy family, but his relationship with his parents and his half-brother is strained at best. Unfortunately, unexpected circumstances have forced him to accept a job from his obnoxious half-brother, taking tourists on charter cruises around the San Franciso Bay. He hates working for his half-brother and catering to all those rich tourists, but his surly mood is boosted when he meets this new client, Dr. Jules Peters.
Jules is Bobby's friend Eric's boss. At 43 years old, he's somewhat older than Bobby, even though the book doesn't state the younger man's age clearly. Jules has lived a very lonely life since his partner Morgan died 16 years ago, and Bobby is the 1st man to spark his interest after all those years. He's also a very wealthy man, which could be a problem considering Bobby's prejudice against rich people.
So there you have the main conflicts in Bobby and Jules' relationship: Can Bobby believe Jules' love for him, considering the older man has been mourning his deceased lover for such a long time? Will Jules' wealth raise Bobby's insecurities?
As it happened in the previous book, all conflicts here were quickly solved, mostly because Bobby and Jules didn't hold much back and talked openly about what bothered them. Okay, they had a few misunderstandings along the way, but they cleared them up soon enough and didn't hold a grudge. If I had one big problem with the story, it was how long Jules had mourned his 1st lover. 16 years is a long, long time! That made me doubt how quickly he fell for Bobby. Anyway, I loved both Bobby and Jules, so I'm willing to let a lot go just because of that.
This was another sweet, feel-good entry in the series. It was better than the previous book because there was no more need to introduce all the characters, something that almost always "harms" the 1st book in any series. As I already knew all the players in advance, all I had to to was relax and enjoy this story. :)
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