Note: This ARC was provided by Riptide Publishing in exchange for an honest review.
Squeeeee! I adored this standalone from Quinn Anderson, and I hope that it's just the first of many more reads that I'll be reading from her. Hotline was sweet but sexy and had a fair dose of snark and sass, two things that I like in the main characters in the books I read. I don't like overly sugary conversations or scenarios because they just remind me a bit too much of the stuff I used to read when I was a teenager, and while there were sweet goings-on between Zack, a phone sex operator, and John, a law student. There were moments that had me frustrated with the two main characters, mostly because they so needed better and more open and honest lines of communication. Funny though that it was as if there was very little hesitation when they were on the phone and Zack was still Wesley and John was still John but they were voices that didn't feel the need to prettify or sanitize whatever fantasies they had, making those conversations far more honest and open than when they were already together, face-to-face, in a non-relationship that felt like a relationship but one neither readily acknowledged yet.
Hotline introduces readers to a phone sex operator named Zack, who isn't exactly the all that passionate about his job. It pays the bills, puts food on the table, and all those other things that keep life for Zack relatively comfortable. The last thing he wants is to have to rely on his parents, so he'll suck it and fulfill whatever desires his clients may ask of him over the phone. The longer he keeps them on the line, the better it'll be for him earnings-wise, but too many times, it's over in a matter of minutes, which doesn't really earn him any bonus points from his boss. Then he picks up the line and he talks to a young man named John. Zack, as always, uses an alias, and Wesley and John hit it off in a way Zack's never been able to with any of his other clients. Their first phone encounter is hot and memorable, and sets the tone for their future encounters. But what happens when Zack goes out with friends and meets his favorite client purely by accident? He knows that pursuing a client would be crossing an ethical line, but he's thought of John more times than he can count, so is putting his job at risk worth making his fantasy a reality?
How could I not fall in love with Zack and John's story? It was fun and lighthearted, even when they threw in the drama because of complications they brought on themselves. Zack Hall is fortunate to have the kind of support system he has in his older sister, Bianca, his best friends, Alexa, Kira, and Lee, and his neighbors, Mr. and Mrs. Alvarez. He also happened to have an adorable dog, Ziggy (which made me think of a cartoon character I loved as a teen). He and John (whose last name I'm pretty sure I never came across in the entire book) already had differences, but it was the lack of communication that nearly broke them. And can I just say that with or without that commitment, because of all the darn miscommunication going on, I consider what was done as cheating. Yeah, more of a sorta-kinda cheating thing, but trust was broken...though that's explained near the end of the book, so I forgave the person concerned. Not that my forgiveness really counted for anything, but you know what I mean. All in all, this book was a great beginning to my reading week, and that leads me to giving Hotline five stars. ♥
Release Date: 31 October 2016
Date Read: 31 October 2016
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