Like a Lover is the sequel to Helping Hand, which I read and thoroughly enjoyed not too long ago. While I would certainly advice anyone to read Helping Hand first, it is not necessary to have read that book or be familiar with the story or characters to fully enjoy Like a Lover. And ‘enjoy’ is the operative word in that sentence.
Rupert and Josh are what Jay Nortecote writes so very well. Normal and recognisable young man who sound and act like the sort of people you would love to have has your friends. Okay, maybe not completely normal.
Maybe Josh isn’t entirely the boy next door unless, that is, the boy next door happens to be an escort. While his job is a means to an end for Josh, it added bonus. His plan works perfectly and he is well on his way to making it through uni without getting into debt, except that he’d never expected to fall for a client.
And Rupert isn’t quite the boy next door either, unless the boy next door happens to have come into an inheritance large enough to not only afford him a mortgage free apartment but also the ability to pay for frequent hook-ups with the escort he’s starting to fall for.
But of course they aren’t intrinsically different from anybody else. They struggle with the feelings they are developing while engaged in what may be a sort of relationship but more of the financial than the romantic variety. With Rupert afraid Josh won’t see him anymore if he admits his feelings and Josh not seeing how a relationship could possibly grow out of what started off as a financial transaction, at least one of them needs a severe talking to in order to see sense.
Like a Lover was pretty much the perfect read for me. With likable but flawed characters, a fascinating premise and a near to ideal balance between angst and humour in a smoothly written story I really couldn’t ask for more.
It was nice to get a few glimpses of Jez an Mac from Helping Hand, still going strong six months later. I really liked that the roles were reversed this time. Where Josh had to talk sense into Jez in Helping Hand, this time it is Jez who has to get Josh’s head out of his arse about Rupert.
This was a charming and very hot and sexy story. Since one of the main characters is an escort the frequent sex scenes didn’t come as a surprise. And after reading many books by this author, neither did the quality of those scenes. Jay Northcote writes hot and steamy very well.
In fact, but I may have said this before, Jay Northcote writes a wonderful story very well. I can always trust her to keep me fully entertained, give me a wonderful reading experience and leave me happy and fulfilled when the story has ended. There’s really not a whole lot more you can ask for in your books.