(The Pennymaker Tales, #2)
by Tara Lain
Young Snowden “Snow” Reynaldi is brilliant, beautiful, and alone. Though he’s shy, weird, and tolerated by the NorCal University students because he’s a renowned whiz at chess and helps put the school on the map, that doesn’t keep him from dreaming of the object of his desires, Riley Prince, championship quarterback.
When Riley needs a physics’ tutor, Snow jumps at the chance, and their relationship heats up—but Riley has to come out of the jock closet to get anywhere. Meanwhile, Snow’s one true friend and mentor, Professor Kingsley, marries a woman who secretly wants the chess tournament glory and money for herself. Soon after, the professor collapses and Snow finds himself underwater—literally. In a car!
Seven frat brothers from Grimm College rescue Snow just in time for his life to get even worse, and Snow discovers the one relationship he always wanted slipping away. With evil looming at every turn, Snow must survive if only to prove he’s the fairest of them all and regain the trust of his handsome prince.
I'm really enjoying the twist on these fairy tales Ms. Lain is writing. This particular story has a darker feel to it, but that is one of the reasons that makes this such an enjoyable read. We get to see the growth and changes both Snow and Riley go through during the course of the book, I liked the fact that while Riley is undoubtedly the big man on campus, he's had a crush on Snow for a while. But given his status on campus, it's also easy to understand why he hasn't come out publicly. Not saying I agree with it, because people should be free to love who they want, it's just too bad some of society isn't that forward-thinking.
Anitra's antics and reasons regarding Snow and the chess tournament were a bit odd, It doesn't help that Anitra has her "cousin" Hunter doing whatever he can to keep Snow from participating in the championship tournament. One point that irritated me was the fact that none of the football players were reprimanded for their actions and behavior.
ARC provided in exchange for honest review.
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“There are rumors here and there, but I’m a big guy, and nobody says it to my face.”
Snow shrugged. “So why change now? You’re a senior. You can do what you want next year.”
Riley leaned his head back against the couch. “Because it’s chickenshit, like I said. People are always going to give gay guys crap when they don’t know anyone who’s gay. I can change that. A lot of people think they know me. I mean, look at you. Chess champion. Much bigger than I’ll ever be. But you never claim to be anything but gay.”
“I’m so weird, nobody’s surprised.”
“No, you’re not. You show the world that gay guys can be brilliant geniuses and beautiful. I can show them that gay guys can be big and strong and well coordinated. We all have a part to play.” He chuckled. “I have to confess, I practiced that speech, but I’m hoping it’s true.”
Snow’s heart beat so loud he could barely hear. Could this really be happening? “Umm, so you said you have enough experience to teach me.” He stared at his moo shu.
Riley sat up and got a very serious expression. “You see, Mr. Reynaldi, it’s all a matter of physics. Your quantum physics says that electrons can be in two places at the same time.” He leaned forward and pulled Snow across his lap, somehow managing to not spill any Chinese food in the process. “It’s like my tongue can be in my mouth—” He ran his soft tongue across Snow’s barely parted lips. “—and inside your mouth at the same time.” He insinuated inside and kissed Snow slowly and thoroughly. So that’s how it feels. Invasive and completing at once.
Riley pulled his lips back from the kiss but kept them close to Snow’s so his breath warmed Snow’s wet mouth. “And just as particles can be waves and waves particles, so I can feel completely relaxed and completely excited simultaneously.”
Snow grinned. “I knew physics could be fun, but this is far beyond my expectations.”
“You didn’t have enough faith in your subject matter.”
“Clearly.” He smiled and whispered, “What happens now?”
“First, I want to know if you’re interested in me, or am I just living in fantasyland?”
Snow’s eyes widened. “Oh, did I not show enough interest?”
Riley laughed. “Yes, but I don’t want to take anything for granted. You’re too special.”
My, that moo shu is interesting. “I’ve been dreaming about you ever since the first time I saw you. I didn’t think you were gay, so I never even hoped it could be more than a dream.”
Riley caressed Snow’s hair. “Think of all the time we wasted dreaming about each other.”
“In quantum physics, particles in contact become quantumly entangled. Perhaps we simply needed more time for the entangling to occur.” Snow smiled softly. This had to be a dream.
About the Author
Tara Lain writes the Beautiful Boys of Romance in LGBT erotic romance novels that star her unique, charismatic heroes. Her first novel was published in January of 2011 and she’s now somewhere around book 23. Her bestselling novels have garnered awards for Best Series, Best Contemporary Romance, Best Ménage, Best LGBT Romance, Best Gay Characters, and Tara has been named Best Writer of the Year in the LRC Awards. In her other job, Tara owns an advertising and public relations firm. She often does workshops on both author promotion and writing craft.
She lives with her soulmate husband and her soulmate dog in Laguna Beach, California, a pretty seaside town where she sets a lot of her books. Passionate about diversity, justice, and new experiences, Tara says on her tombstone it will say “Yes”!
You can find Tara at