Boyfriend Material by Alexis Hall

The book cover depicts the two main characters, Luc and Oliver, leaning in opposite corners against frames of iconic London scenes in line drawings: a teapot and teacup, London Bridge, Big Ben, the London Eye Millenium Wheel, an umbrella, a double-decker bus, and a British flag. All are drawn in white against a background of the red and blue hues of the British flag.

By Peter N.

In all honesty, I had been in quite a reading slump. Until this.

Boyfriend Material by Alexis Hall was exactly what I needed. A light read, a little bit of fluff, and a satisfying turn of events for two hapless chaps in London, England. Luc is a rudderless ship in the sea of life, just coasting from one man to another and stuck in a job that he won’t admit he doesn’t totally hate, raising funds for the preservation and defense of dung beetles. The kicker? The charity is aptly named CRAPP, or The Coleoptera Research and Protection Project. Did you laugh? Because I did, and that’s not the last laugh-out-loud moment you’ll have when reading this book. I found many a moment where I loudly cracked up and others had to ask me what I was laughing about.

Now, Luc is in a pickle, not only because he’s the child of two current and former rock stars from the eighties, but also because his talent for landing himself in the tabloids for unscrupulous moments has his job in jeopardy; no one wants to donate to a charity that employs someone like him. In comes Oliver Blackwood, a stiff and proper barrister whom he met once before but made the worst impression on due to copious amounts of alcohol. Oliver is his chance to sort out his issues, and so Luc hatches a plan where they pretend to be in a relationship to clean up Luc’s image, as well as provide a plus-one for Oliver for his parents’ ruby anniversary party. But what happens when a classic romantic trope leads to more? You can’t just be fake boyfriends and not expect some real feelings to develop. Right?

Well, from the first few glimpses of how real a relationship between these two men could be, I was HOOKED. Throw in a kooky friends group, complicated parental relationships, and French Toast, and you’ve got quite an enjoyable read about two chaps who were aimless as individuals, but found their way together. I found myself wanting to slap Luc upside his head and hug him at the same time. Oliver was so proper that it hurt, but the momentary glimpses of his real self and his humanity felt special, and I felt privileged to see them. Alexis Hall crafted a great book that I felt such a connection to, and I cannot wait to delve further into their story in the next book in the London Calling series, Husband Material

Peter is an Instructor and Research Specialist at the Miller Branch and has a humongous sweet tooth, so the numerous mentions of French Toast in this book DID NOT HELP.

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