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Another Bar Tender Tale
Twenty-six-year-old barman and cabaret entertainer Justin has recently moved to London for a fresh start. Charismatic and flirty, Justin is naturally the center of attention wherever he goes. There’s only one problem: the object of Justin’s affections, a handsome, enigmatic bartender named Yena, isn’t won over by Justin’s charm. In fact, he flat out turns Justin down.
Stripping off his showmanship frills and charms, Justin aims for a different approach: reveal himself for who he is. Underneath his public face Justin is an honest young man who wants someone special to share his time with… and laugh at his awful jokes.
Justin can only hope the real him is irresistible to the man he loves.
While listed as part of the Bar Tenders series, Love on the Rocks is practically a stand-alone story. There is no need to read the first book. Having said that, I must say that I enjoyed the first story better.
The thing is, I felt that this story had no focus. Well, except for us readers getting dragged along with Justin’s adventure of trying to win Yena’s heart. We got the first flirting, the drinking, Justin talking to his best friend on how to charm Yena, we got the first date, second date, some insecurities, a little jealousy, a misunderstanding … there was a missing phone involved too at one point. So yeah, all that.
But the story rambled from one point to another. There wasn’t heavy angst or major drama – it seemed that Justin understood the idea of ‘TALKING’ especially with his best friend who could point out his mistakes. But at the same time, personally it felt like watching a balloon that kept being deflated after being pumped up. Just as I thought it was getting better, it didn’t.
In addition, since this was written only from Justin’s perspective, I didn’t feel that I understood Yena at all. I didn’t understand what made Yena tick, I didn’t understand why Yena acted the way he did. I didn’t get enough insight on Yena as a character. He was still a mystery to me, even towards that happily-for-now ending.
So, in the end, this one was just an okay read. It was easy, it was light, but at the same time, it didn’t stand out enough. If you are looking for something like that, without having to lean too much on plot, this could be an alternative to read.