Review: The Handy Men by Jamie K. Schmidt

The Handy Men

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Jack and Dean love each other, but they’re missing the woman to complete their triangle. When newly divorced Paige Richards buys a Bed and Breakfast on Hamlet Island and employs them to help her fix the inn up, Jack and Dean are sure they’ve found the one they’ve been looking for. Despite the playful, sexy clues they drop, luscious Paige is reticent about getting involved, even when they set the stage so she can stumble on them in action. They can tell by her responses she wants to join them, but rumors travel fast on the small island, and tales of a threesome could get back to the conservative, family vacation crowd who won’t patronize those with an alternative lifestyle. And the last thing they want for Paige is the B&B’s rooms…and her bank account…to remain empty. But Jack and Dean will stop at nothing to prove to Paige that she can have it all…with them.

Review. Text on the string. Conceptual 3d image

Source: Netgalley     My Rating: 3½/5 stars

Recently divorced Paige Richards has 99 problems and two extremely hot, gay men are one of them!!  Yeah, I totally typed that . . . . .

Paige thought her marriage was solid and strong right up until she caught her husband banging another woman.  Despite her ridiculous parents and their warnings about the appearance of divorce, Paige leaves his sorry ass, sells their home, and buys a beautiful bed and breakfast on a little island.  Unfortunately, that beautiful B&B needs a lot of work and so, with a heavy heart and a lot of regret, Paige borrows the money from her ridiculous parents and sets her sights on righting the ship and making a success of her property.  Fortunately, Jack and Dean live just a ferry ride away from the island and are two super-talented handy men. 

Jack and Dean are more than just hired help to Paige, they are friends who very much want to become lovers.  Between the two of them, they have flirted and hinted at every turn, but Paige just doesn’t seem to be catching on.  To be fair, everyone on the small island (whether they like it or not!) know Jack and Dean to be a committed GAY couple.  What most don’t know, nor care to know, is that the two men are a committed couple, but each is in fact bisexual and when the right woman comes along, they are more than willing to share and share alike.  For Jack and Dean, Paige is the right woman and they want their relationship to expand well beyond its current non-sexual parameters. 

With a little bit of planning and a willingness to finally be brutally honest and up front, Jack and Dean set about seducing Paige.  To everyone’s surprise and delight, Paige isn’t just receptive to the idea, she is all over it, ready and willing to jump right in.  Unlike many of the island’s residents (and her ridiculous parents!) Paige doesn’t see the men and their relationship as wrong or immoral, but just another expression of love and commitment that she is so happy to have been invited into.  Jack and Dean are good men who genuinely care for her and have worked as hard as Paige to see her dream become a successful reality.  All involved know there is going to be some blowback once their relationship becomes public knowledge, what they don’t count on is the source of that blowback.

The Bottom Line:  At only 140ish pages, The Handy Men is a solid read with just one big issue.  I like the three main characters quite a bit, but they are dealt an inordinately large amount of drama for such a short read.  I can totally understand the negative attitude of some of the locals, the gossip about the trio that is generated and spread, Paige’s ridiculous parents, and the drama associated with those things.  However, I can’t understand the additional drama of the ex-girlfriend and her new plus one, Paige’s ex-husband, and his new fiancé.  For such a short read, this is just too much drama!  At some point, it isn’t just a single straw that breaks the camel’s back, the camel is buried under the haystack with no hope of getting out.  I really would have liked to see one of two things happen with this read: 1) some of the drama was cut out or, 2) the book was lengthened to more comfortably accommodate all the drama thrown at Paige, Jack, and Dean.  This one big issue didn’t stop me from liking this book, but it did keep me from really loving it.

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