Will and Patrick Episodes 1-3 by Leta Blake and Alice Griffiths ~ Book Review by Ulysses

Will-Patrick-1-3Title: Will and Patrick Episodes 1-3

Author: Leta Blake and Alice Griffiths

Publisher: Leta Blake Books

Cover Artist: Unknown

Rating: 4 of 5 Stars

Publication Date: 10/26/2015

Length: Novella (~ 15K-50K)

Genre: Contemporary, Fiction, Gay Fiction

Blurb:

Will & Patrick Wake Up Married
Join the fun in this vibrant first installment of the new romantic comedy serial by best-selling author Leta Blake and newcomer Alice Griffiths!

After a drunken night of hot sex in Vegas, strangers Will Patterson and Dr. Patrick McCloud wake up married. A quickie divorce is the most obvious way out—unless you’re the heir of a staunchly Catholic mafia boss with a draconian position on the sanctity of marriage.

Stuck between a rock and a hard place, Will and Patrick don’t like it, or each other, but they have to make the best of it until they can find another way out of their marriage. To ensure the trust fund Will’s charitable foundation relies on isn’t revoked by his mobster grandfather, he and Patrick travel to Will’s hometown of Healing, South Dakota, posing as a newlywed couple in the throes of true love at first sight.

Complicating their scheme are Will’s unresolved feelings for his all-too-recent ex-boyfriend Ryan, and Patrick’s desire to get back to the only thing that really matters to him in life: neurosurgery. Will they fool everyone? Or will the mafia get wind that their marriage is a fake? Throw their simmering attraction into the mix and all bets are off!

Will & Patrick Meet the Family
Follow Will & Patrick as they cope with the fallout from their Vegas wedding in this second installment of the romantic-comedy serial, Wake Up Married, by best-selling author Leta Blake and newcomer Alice Griffiths!

Meeting the family is challenging for every new couple. But for Will and Patrick, the awkward family moments only grow more hilarious—and painful—when they must hide the truth of their predicament from the people they care about most.

Throw in the sexual tension flaring between them, uncomfortable run ins with Will’s all-too-recent ex-boyfriend, an overprotective mobster father, and a mafia spy tailing them around Healing, South Dakota, and you’ve got a recipe for madcap laughs and surprisingly heartwarming feels.

Will & Patrick Do the Holidays
Follow Will & Patrick as they do the holidays in this third installment of the romantic-comedy serial, Wake Up Married, by best-selling author Leta Blake and newcomer Alice Griffiths!

A couple’s first holiday season is always a special time. Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year’s Eve are magical when you’re in love. Too bad Will and Patrick’s marriage is a sham and they’re only faking their affection for each other. Or are they?

Sparks fly in this episode of the Wake Up Married serial. Will the sexual tension between Will and Patrick finally explode in a needy night of passion? Or will they continue to deny their feelings?

My View:

This triad of novellas, presented as the beginning of an ongoing serial of six, is described by its authors as “trope-based,” a term that sort of puzzled me. I guess it must refer to the “trope” of a couple getting married under the influence while in Vegas. Surely, that is an ingredient of farce and/or rom-com, and yet these books were not at all what I expected. I read them all in one go, and found myself increasingly caught up in the unanticipated relationship of these two complex, good men.

Will Patterson, at twenty-five, is the steward of a vast fortune left to him by his Mafioso grandfather, and he uses that money to do good in the world. Patrick McCloud is a thirty-five-year-old neurosurgeon, whose brilliance in the operating room is matched by his prickly personality and lack of people skills. These men meet at a bar in Las Vegas during a medical conference, and, when Will receives bad news over the phone, proceed to get hammered, married, and have non-stop sex all night – in that order.

The opening scene of the first book, which takes place in Patrick’s hotel room, comes off like a standard farce, the “Oh my God what did I do?” moment. But it quite quickly loses its comic luster as Will begins to explain the enormity of what he and Patrick have actually done. What is crucial to this first book is that both Will and Patrick are feeling something unexpected after their passionate night together. Equally crucial is that both men are in denial about what those unfamiliar feelings actually mean.

Will is reeling from the loss of a longtime boyfriend, and Patrick, stunned by his unexpected dismissal from his job, has never admitted to feeling anything for any of the men he’s slept with in the past. Both men have sadly distorted views of what love is, what relationships are, and what they really feel. As the novellas open up their lives to us, we learn what goes on inside them, and begin to understand them.

Desperate to preserve the money that funds Good Works (the name of his enterprise), Will convinces Patrick to follow him back to Healing, South Dakota, to consult with his grandmother Molinaro. Like Will, she has abandoned the mob world into which she married, but still has power and connections. Patrick goes along because he’s looking for a job, piqued by his unanticipated tender feelings toward Will, but also appalled at the idea of being trapped in this fake marriage in a one-horse town in America’s heartland.

As the story progresses, we meet Will’s fractious family, the good-natured citizens of Healing, and the denizens of the hospital that Will’s money supports. We also begin to learn bits and pieces of Patrick’s own past, and thus to understand why he is who he is. These men are both tangled messes of contradictions and self-defeating misconceptions; and yet they are also (at least to me) irresistible. The poignancy of their situation is in their inability to see each other clearly because of their respective blinkered views of the world.

There are some truly memorable characters in the book, but even when the authors fall back on quirky small-town personalities redolent of Mayberry in the 1960s, they handle it with surprising grace and a sense of humor that is never mocking, always affectionate. The books by their very serial nature present a certain sustained frustration that can be annoying, but I confess that it bothered me less with each episode. What really surprised me was the emotional punch to what could have been simply a silly story.

A new episode is promised in January of 2016, and I definitely want to read more about Will and Patrick.

Links

Will and Patrick Episodes 1-3 on Goodreads

Amazon US
Amazon UK
Amazon CA

I would like to thank the publisher for providing me with the eARC of this title in exchange for my honest opinion.

Farewell Giveaway
I have a number of paperbacks, most of which are signed, to giveaway. Over the between now (11 Mar 2017) and 31 Mar 2017, every comment on the blog (this post and all other new posts), will be entered to win 1 of these paperbacks. There are also some misc swag items, so there will be a few packs of these to give away as well.

Thank you so much for your support over the last 4 years. Prism will be closing its doors on 1 April 2017. All content will remain available, but no new content will appear after 31 Mar 2017. As such all request forms have been turned off. Again Thank you,

Brandilyn
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