Nicki reviews A Betting Man/A Marrying Man (Men of Manhattan books 1 & 2) by Sandrine Gasq-Dion.
Why I read this book: I have read all of Sandrine’s Assassin/Shifter series and fell in love with them. I knew that if I could love 20+ books from the same author that I had to read all of her series and couldn’t wait to read this one. I received the book free for an honest review by the publisher. Thanks Wilde City Press!
A BETTING MAN
Kent Samson loves his life as a big time ad exec for a prestigious advertising company in New York. But when he makes a bet with his best friend, Blaine, Kent is thrown for a loop—for Kent has to make the next person to walk through the door fall in love with him. When unsuspecting bike messenger Terry Barron delivers a package, he meets the unbelievably sexy Kent Samson. Suddenly, secrets and lies complicate everything and both men find themselves in uncharted waters. How will Terry feel when Kent is revealed as a betting man?
A MARRYING MAN
It’s been almost a year since a disastrous bet dropped Blaine McKlintock and his best friend, Kent Samson in hot water. Now, Kent is getting ready to propose to Terry Barron. Blaine couldn’t be happier for his best friend, but when Kent asks Blaine to plan the wedding, Blaine is thrown for a loop, especially when Kent drops another bomb. Spencer Cassidy will be helping. Blaine remembers Spencer very well, but the former Wall Street force doesn’t seem to remember him. Blaine’s changed a lot since the bet, but will Spencer see it too?
Publisher: Wilde City Press
Publication Date: August 28, 2013
Page Count: about 219 pgs
Story: A Betting Man (book 1) introduces us to a few character in the Men of Manhattan world. The book centers on Kent and Terry and their whirlwind and heartbreaking romance. Kent is an advertising exec that is a huge playboy with some of the hottest women in the world. When his best friend Blaine gives him a dare, Kent is in for a surprise when the person he has to convince to fall in love with him is a man! Though Kent and Blaine played a few “gay chicken” games in college, Kent had never dated a man or really expressed any interest in one. How could this possibly work?
Terry is a bike messenger with a big secret. He knows men like Kent (self-centered, rich, know-it-all, charming) and expresses much doubt about their chances of a relationship due to Kent’s numerous female affairs and his character attributes. Luckily for Kent, Terry gives him a chance and sparks fly very quickly. Of course, with 2 big secrets in a relationship, something has to come out eventually. The fun is trying to figure out what is Terry’s secret and trying to figure out whether Kent’s secret or Terry’s is the bigger one.
This story is not a case of insta-love, though the relationship does move very quickly. I’ve noticed in many of Sandrine’s books that once the main characters give each other a chance, lust and love soon follow, but not in an unrealistic manner. I enjoyed seeing Terry bring the human out of Kent and being able to see Kent’s coming out of the closet was funny and interesting. Due to this being a (mixed book, anthology, combo?) we can see where the relationship goes between Kent and Terry, but there are so many nuances in the story and such a great love story that even knowing the ending I had to read this book. I’ve actually read it about 3 times now because I loved it that much. Now on to book 2…
A Marrying Man is the story of Blaine and Spencer. Blaine is the best friend from A Betting Man that made a horrible bet that could have ruined 2 peoples lives if their love wasn’t strong enough to withstand the lies. Spencer is Terry’s boss/best friend that despised Kent and Blaine for putting Terry through so much pain. Little does Spencer know that him and Blaine have a history and that history starts them on the road to a possible future of love.
I’m glad we got to see the continuation of Kent’s and Terry’s relationship, and it was added to the story in such a way that it didn’t detract from Blaine and Spencer’s love story at all. I think it’s cute how they initially met and that Spencer’s memory of the meeting is very unexpected by Blaine. I understand Blaine’s hesitation in believing that Spencer is attracted to him, I could easily see it being a case of revenge of the best friend. Of course, Spencer doens’t see it that way at all and tries so hard to convince Blaine of that. Does he succeed though?
We also met some new characters in this book, mainly Valerie, Casper the friendly secretary and Spencer’s little brother, Slater. One thing I really enjoy about Sandrine’s writing is her ability to seamlessly add characters into a story without it seeming that she’s “forcing” a series. As in her Assassin/Shifter series, I fully expect that as these books continue we will keep meeting more people and seeing more connections to continue the Men of Manhattan world. I am more than ready to read more stories from this world, especially Slater’s, Matthew’s and Ryan’s.
9 out of 10 pots of gold
ARe [All Romance Ebooks] – (A Betting Man) https://www.allromanceebooks.com/product-abettingman-1194154-149.html (A Marrying Man) https://www.allromanceebooks.com/product-amarryingman-1251824-149.html
About the author
Sandrine (Sandy) Was born in Inglewood, California. Raised by “Old School” French parents, she later moved to Tucson, AZ. It was there that writing became a hobby. Always told she had a great imagination, Sandy wrote short stories for her friends in High School. In college, she took more writing classes while working on her Criminal Justice degree, but it wasn’t until a soap opera caught her eye that she got involved in male on male romances. On the advice of a friend, Sandy dipped her toes into the world of M/M Romance.
Sandy takes the writing seriously and has had countless conversations with gay men as well as hours of research. She’s been involved with the military in one way or another for over twenty years, and has a great deal of respect for our men in uniform. She’s traveled the world, but is currently enjoying the South.
Author Website – http://www.sandrinegasqdion.com/home.html
Author Blog – http://authorsandrinegasq-dion.blogspot.com/
Facebook Author Page – https://www.facebook.com/pages/Official-Sandrine-Gasq-Dion/137320826386776
Twitter – https://twitter.com/Sandrine_GasqD