Wendy reviews Wilder Ryder Gets Lucky: An Enemies to Lovers M/M Romance (Falling for Fame Book 4) by Julia McBryant (Published August 14, 2020. 108 pages) A copy was provided in exchange for an honest review.
Paparazzi trap the president’s All-American boy with the self-proclaimed prince of Myrtle Beach— and Ben’s forced into a fake relationship with Wilder Ryder in this opposites attract gay comedy…
Ben Quincy: I thought he’d make a good quickie, but we got caught. Then the stupid twink barfed on me at the top of the Ferris wheel— in the middle of a national broadcast. He’s sexy as sin, but I’m saddled with a go-kart riding minigolf champ all summer long.
The only good part is the hate sex.
Someone save me from Wilder Ryder before something awful happens. Like more snakes.
This funny gay romance is part of the Falling for Fame series, a collection of stand-alone books about the rich, famous, and infamous tumbling into love with everyday people, and guarantees an HEA for both Ben and Wilder.
Buy from Amazon
Thank god, when they went up to the room after a silent lunch, Ben’s clothes had arrived. Wilder propped himself against a wall and frankly stared, the little slut, while Ben took off his swim trunks and T-shirt. Just to give him a show, Ben made sure to walk across the room, cock swinging, to hang his bathing suit from the shower rod. It didn’t bother him; he’d spent too much time in locker rooms to care.
Clearly, Wilder hadn’t learned to keep his eyes above the waist.
Wilder still watched, smirking, as Ben changed into normal khaki shorts and a button-down. But when Ben finished tying his shoes, Wilder sighed. “D’you have to like, wear Sperries? And socks? Christ. C’mon. We’re gonna see the gators again.”
Did Wilder have to look so smug? All the goddamn time? Was this just his normal expression, the way some girls had resting bitch face?
They hopped in his red Land Rover with the WYLDER plates. Wilder, predictably, drove like a maniac. Ben would have to concoct some excuse about needing to ride with the Secret Service from now on. Inside the zoo’s gift shop, Ben endured the whispers and points, looked at plastic snakes and frogs, and ignored Wilder as he talked to the clerk.
“C’mon, I said we’d help out.” Wilder grabbed Ben’s hand and began dragging.
Ben’s stomach flipped. “Doing what? Honey?” People stared and snapped their picture.
Wilder grinned. “We’re gonna do the reptile show. You don’t mind helping me handle the animals, d’you?”
Sweet Jesus. He must’ve paled. His quote in the high school yearbook had been from Indiana Jones: “Snakes. Why’d it have to be snakes?”
“Oh.” Wilder grinned wickedly. “So you do mind. Well, too late now.”
Wilder strode out into the cool of a covered amphitheater, Ben in hand, oh god, he had to look like he didn’t care, like this was no big deal. Ben plastered on a smile and waved. “Hey y’all, we have a special guest today!” Wilder grinned. “This is Ben Quincy! And he’s gonna help me show y’all the animals!”
People went predictably insane. Ben kept waving and smiling. He held back a shiver. The press snapped away.
Wilder unearthed an enormous Burmese python from a cat carrier, wrapped it around his shoulders, and began talking about invasive species. Then he said something about a corn snake, smiled, and pointed. “Ben, get Bessie out for us, will ya?”
Oh dear sweet Lord. Ben closed his eyes and reached into a dark carrier. He touched something dry and scaly, wrapped his hand around it, cringing, hopefully not visibly, oh fuck he was going to vomit, and carefully lifted it out.
“Aw, isn’t she pretty? Here, baby, put her around your neck like I have Thor here.” Wilder draped the snake over his goddamn shoulders, holy Christ, he was going to die and wasn’t this thing a fucking constrictor? Ben broke into a cold sweat. He kept up the plastered smile.
Wilder wore that fucking python for half an hour like he was goddamn Steve Irwin, and forced Ben to pick up everything else, from a black rat snake (“Careful, you know she bites”) to a kingsnake. “Remember, what do we say to tell the difference between a nonvenomous kingsnake and a venomous coral snake?” He got the kids to yell it loudly. “RED ON YELLOW, KILL A FELLOW. RED ON BLACK, FRIEND TO JACK.”
Ben frantically checked the bands on the snake he was holding. Wilder laughed. “Y’all look at Ben now. Ben baby, don’t worry. A coral snake’d have to chew on you to envenomate, its fangs’re so damn short.”
Wilder grinned. “You can put him back now. Pussy.” He said it low so no one would hear. “Get the anole tank to pass around.”
Ben hissed at him. “What the fuck is an anole?”
“Holy hell.” Wilder picked up a tank with a small green lizard in it, delivered a lecture, and passed it around. He did the same with a green tree frog, a gray tree frog, and a squirrel frog, all of which looked the fucking same, then two kinds of skinks.
Other than the python, these things were native. Like, hello, look, we are currently standing in that snake’s natural environment. Ben could maybe just glance into a tree and see one dangling there or something.
His father had consigned him to a special kind of hell.
“Now we have a special treat for y’all. Here, Ben, take Thor for a minute.” Wilder unwound the enormous python and plopped it onto Ben. It was huge, and heavy, and sort of cold, and scaly and sinewed, like one big muscle contracting on him, and Ben could only smile through the scream that wanted to slip through his clenched teeth.
Wilder reached into a carrier and took out a goddamn possum. He cuddled it close and kissed its head and delivered a lecture about them.
Why didn’t Ben get to hold the adorable little possum?
It curled its tail around Wilder’s arm and snuggled.
Ben wanted to snuggle the possum. The snake moved. He shuddered.
“Okay, Ben, I’ll take Thor back before you pee your pants.” Wilder smirked. The crowd cracked up. Wilder set the possum in its crate, returned the python to his, and picked up the damn possum again.
Wilder delivered the rest of the lecture about various venomous snakes in the area. Ben held up their pictures. Wilder cuddled the possum.
Afterwards, everyone wanted their picture taken with Ben. He submitted to forty-five minutes of photographs while Wilder grinned, occasionally kissing the possum on the head.
Finally Wilder kicked off the wooden amphitheater wall where he’d been leaning. “You wanna see the rest of the zoo? We didn’t get to feed the buffalo or the deer last time.”
“I don’t want to feed your fucking buffalo.” Ben glared. “You motherfucker. You knew I hated snakes.”
Wilder shrugged. “Only one way to get over it. And it got you back for rocking that Ferris wheel car, now didn’t it? Yes it did, didn’t it, Fuzzball?” He baby-talked the last part to the goddamn possum.
Ben clenched his teeth. “You throwing up on me got me back for rocking the Ferris wheel car! By the way, those pictures of you barfing? They’re all over the news.” He furrowed his brow. “And why didn’t I get to hold the possum?”
Wilder and Ben start off full of themselves. I wasn’t sure if I’d like this book or not because they are young, rich, each elite in their own class but miles apart from each other and they seem very self-absorbed. When they’re thrown together, they try to fight the attraction between them and they cause all kinds of drama. There’s lots of angry sex and some hurt feelings. The book is full of erotic moments and you might think that is all your getting with the story. But, no… Julia McBryant writes these deep and broken young men who have the most beautiful souls. I urge you to look deeper when you read this book because you will find all kinds of hidden gems. I always feel like I’m getting more than one book with every Julia McBryant story I read.
The story is very well developed and the author writes with her southern humor and sass sprinkled liberally throughout.
Julia McBryant is, as the saying goes, Southern born, Southern bred, and when she dies, she’ll be Southern dead. Julia likes to play with her German Shepherds and hike, especially in the North Carolina mountains. When she isn’t writing, she’s writing. She is grateful her husband tolerates both her and her affinity for glitter.