Technology-challenged historian Regis is on a mission of mercy: his miserably pregnant cousin, Penny, needs a diversion and the only thing that will satisfy is the latest version of a video game, Dead Knights at Castle Kill.
When Regis braves the aisles of a video game retailer, he’s swept off his feet by Mars, the tall, dark, and gorgeous salesclerk who works there. But there’s very little chance that such a savvy gamer would ever notice a man who can barely use his computer.
Deciding the obvious solution is to fake it, Regis enlists the aid of his cousin to convince Mars he’s a high-level gamer. The plan works perfectly right up until Mars invites him to a prestigious gaming conference, where even Regis’s high IQ isn’t enough to fake his way through dozens of real gamers—and will definitely cost him the man he’s been lying to the whole time.
Source: ARC from Less Than Three Press via NetGalley
This is a cute quick read with a nice main character and a bit of heat towards the end. As someone who isn’t a gamer, I could understand Regis’ fish-out-of-water experience at the beginning when he walks into the store looking for his cousin’s game. His awkwardness and history-geek habits were cute and a sharp contrast to where he was and what he was doing.
Then along came Mars. I have to say I really didn’t feel the attraction between him and Regis. Sure, lust at first sight and all, but as the book progressed I just wasn’t convinced by the romance – especially on Mars’ side. By the end it didn’t feel like anything more serious than a hook-up, and that was without the idea that Regis is lying to Mars throughout.
To be honest my favourite bit was when Regis meets up with his ex. The interaction was much more believable and I was right on Regis’ side throughout that scene. When it came to him and Mars though… not so much. Which left the sex scene a bit quick and uninteresting to me. I’m also pretty sure genuine gamers won’t find much here to enjoy. Since the whole story is written from Regis’ pov that might explain a lot, but it didn’t feel very authentic to me (then again I wasn’t convinced by his history credentials either).
So overall it’s okay. Cute in places, less interesting in others, but it’s quick and fun enough if you’re looking for something like that. It’s not the best LT3 story I’ve read, but it’s not the worst either.
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