Before confessing his gayness to his best friend, Tierney Terrebonne’s sex life is strictly restroom. After confessing his gayness to his best friend . . . it doesn’t improve much. Why bother trying when the man he’s loved for fourteen years (see: “best friend”) is totally unattainable? Good thing Tierney is an old hand at accepting defeat; all it takes is a bottle of bourbon. Or fifty. Repeat as needed.
Dalton Lehnart has a history of dating wealthy, damaged, closeted, lying, cheating, no-good, cowardly men, so of course he’s immediately attracted to Tierney Terrebonne. Fortunately, Tierney is so dissolute that even Dalton’s feelings for the man would be better described as pity. Which becomes sympathy as they get to know each other. Followed by compassion, concern, caring, and hopefulness as Tierney struggles to change his life. When the man comes out very publicly and enters rehab, Dalton finds himself downright attached to Tierney. And as everyone knows, after attachment comes . . .
But post-rehab Tierney can’t handle more than friendship, so Dalton should be safe from repeating his own past mistakes, right? Right?
You probably noticed that I was one of the stops on the Billionaire with Benefits Virtual Book Tour. Anne Tenino explained in that post that this installment of Romancelandia took a lot longer to write than expected which, in turn, made the time span between Too Stupid to Live and Billionaire with Benefits a little longer. To be honest, I hadn’t noticed. (Don’t judge, I read a lot…) That is, until I started reading this book and realized that I didn’t really remember the characters from the first book. That’s okay though, because there was a fair amount of overlap in the beginning of Billionaire with Benefits. It didn’t take me long to get up to speed. (Plus, it gave me an excellent excuse to re-read the first book – you know, just to make sure I didn’t miss anything important. 😉 )
There are a couple of things that draw me into Anne Tenino’s books. The first is humor. Her characters are witty and real. They had dimension and were all well rounded, but none of them took themselves too seriously – for the most part. Which brings me to the second thing that draws me in… there were some pretty tough issues in this book. Bashing, prejudice, abuse (mental, physical and substance.) The humor took the edge off, but it didn’t diminish any of it.
Tierney was broken. Dalton had pulled himself out of a past that he had no intention of repeating. Together they were perfect, whether they knew it at first or not. Having Ian and Sam in the middle of it all kept things interesting. A lot of ground was covered in Billionaire with Benefits. Past and present was woven together perfectly. The dynamic between friends, family, lovers and even enemies kept things interesting and I loved every minute of it.
Just a side note. The title doesn’t really do this book justice. Yes, Tierney comes from money and Dalton doesn’t, but this isn’t your stereotypical ‘have – have not’ romance. It very easily could have been, given Dalton’s history, but it never went there – which is a good thing.
Hopefully there won’t be as much of a time lapse between Billionaire with Benefits and the next and final book in the Romancelandia series. Regardless, I’ll be waiting patiently for the next installment. 😉