…we're keeping our name but expanding our offerings!
Restaurant owner Tom Fearnes has loved his partner Cass for as long as he can remember, but their work often keeps them apart. When he meets a striking young man named Jake on the vibrant streets of Camden Town, their heady first encounter takes an unexpected turn.
Jake Thompson can hardly believe his luck when he wakes up in Tom’s bed. Tom is gorgeous, kind, and . . . taken. Tom’s explanation of his open relationship leaves Jake cold, but Tom is too tempting, and when hard times force Jake to accept Tom’s helping hand, he finds himself between two men who’ve lost their way.
Cass Pearson is a troubled soul. He loves Tom with all he has, but some days it feels like he hasn’t much to give. Jake seems like the perfect solution. Cass risks everything to push Jake and Tom together, but Jake resists, wary, until the darkness of Cass’s past comes to call. Then Jake finds himself the last man standing, and it’s time to dig deep and shine a light for the men he’s grown to love.
When Sara and I heard about Misfits, we knew we had to tackle this one together. We’re happy to say it did NOT disappoint. Misfits includes POV parts from three MCs, starting with Tom. The reader gets to know him, his partner in love, life and business, Cass. We adored Tom’s voice from page one. He’s strong and wants to fix everyone he loves. He’s selfless, selfish and an amazing man anyway you look at him. His heart is huge and when he meets shy, down-on-his-luck waiter, Jake, everything Tom and Cass didn’t realize they were missing is suddenly right in front of them.
Without further ado, here are our rambling thoughts on this gorgeous story about a party of three.
Holy menage, this was good. So good. I’m a huge fan of Garret Leigh when she writes boys this way; full of deep emotions, angst and intense passion. I love getting inside the head of someone (or rather someones) who have enough heart and love to share it with more than one person. It’s a beautiful thing we get with romance, watching two souls fall for one another, to lend their strength and to have it returned. But with menage, you get it three-fold and it can be hard to tell the story and make it believable. For me? This was totally believable and I loved that Cass and Tom had a long-term relationship when Tom meets Jake and brings him home.
“It’s got to fit, and feel right. There’s no point setting the tone, only to mess it up at the last hurdle.”
I so agree! I’ll admit going in that the idea of menage was a little scary to me. I’ve seen it done sloppily before, but this story was so smooth, from gentle, loving Tom, to angry, bitter Jake, to flawed, tough-as-nails Cass, I was hooked on ALL these guys. There wasn’t one I was cheering for more than the others. They were so in tune with each other.
I liked that Tom and Cass are already committed. You get this from the beginning, but they have an open relationship that allows them to sleep with other men. But Jake? They weren’t counting on Jake, and Jake wasn’t counting on them. I felt for Tom and Cass as they wait for Jake to come to a decision with the couple, and I adored the exchange between Jake and Cass when they finally meet, and seeing it all through Tom’s eyes was gorgeous.
“Don’t do your nut, but I reckon you’re everything me and Tom didn’t know we were looking for.”
Yep, this was where the writing really shined for me, in the way the guys connected and found common ground. I mean, c’mon. I’m no expert on three-way relationships, but that whole process can’t be easy! Leigh did a nice job of stretching time for the reader, I thought. Of making things come together without throwing it at us all insta-relationship perfection. One of the other things I really liked in seeing the relationships grow was the fact that each of these guys brought some hardship to the table. They had big things to work through, and Leigh did a beautiful job of writing a tough disability into the plot and letting the characters deal with developments related to it in a very natural way. Also? I loved that trust was such a huge theme in this story. It really resonated and carried throughout, and I give huge props to Leigh for never making me feel like something was happening that one of the characters didn’t want to happen.
Yes! Getting more than one point of view in a story of three men could get messy, but Leigh has this balance of letting each man have his say when it’s needed. I love it when a story flows seamlessly and this does, from Tom’s POV to Jake’s, it wasn’t a hard transition, and Jake’s POV was so needed when it arrived. This story, it was perfect and there is nothing, not one damn thing, I would change. Watching the relationship evolve was breathtaking. I did not need to put reality aside to see these three men falling for one another. The friendship Cass and Jake have first was endearing and when they finally cross the line? Just make sure you have fan and water handy, ‘kay? You’re going to need it. (Jenni nods knowingly. Yep. ;) )
Tom grabbed Cass as he started to turn away. “I love you.”
Cass smiled. “I know. That’s why I’m totally cool with this. I can see it, Tom . . . I can see what draws you to him, and it’s fucking beautiful.”
Even though there was tension, there was a lot of domesticity and everyday life in the novel. As I was reading, I knew the story was moving forward and to a place where things could tie up nicely for the guys, but I wasn’t stressed or anxious or wondering if it would feel unbalanced at the end. I felt content and satisfied. This is the point where I should also admit how very much I enjoyed the sexy time with these men. Coupled or all together, they were steamy hot in the bedroom, but never in a way that was gratuitous or over the top. It was delish.
Each strength and weakness they have was mirrored in one of the other men and it was what made them blend so well. Tom wants to fix everything for the men he loves. Jake, he has his issues that I won’t spoil, that make him SO Jake, and the way both Tom and Cass deal with it was beautiful. I love that Cass does his research and confronts it while Tom ignores it to a point to not make Jake uncomfortable, and Jake needs both men in this way. And then there’s Cass. Cass, Cass, Cass…the quiet, subdued and mysterious point to this triangle. He drove me crazy trying to figure him out and of course, Cass needs both men in his life to finally come to terms with…everything.
I don’t feel sorry for you. I just didn’t want you to fall.
Misfits is an aptly named book for three men who don’t make sense alone but create a world, a family and a safe haven with one another. The book, the boys, the writing, the setting, the everything about it was amazing.
We’re so on the same page, Sara. Cass was my boy, too. Plus Tom. And Jake. And the book’s title! GAH! It worked. *sigh* So. When’s our next Garrett Leigh buddy read? ;-)