Perfect (Soulmates #3) - Felice Stevens Reviewed for Sinfully.

While this is the fourth story in the Soulmates series it is a standalone, but it does have ties to [b:One Call Away|33850582|One Call Away (Soulmates, #2)|Felice Stevens||54792313] (Noah and Oren’s story). Jeremy is Noah’s brother and the timeline of this story begins before and flows into the events there. Other than that, there is no reason not to jump into this book even if you haven’t read the prior stories – although I highly recommend them on their own as well.

When Jeremy and Blake meet on a sidewalk on a snowy night, they seem as different as can be; Jeremy, the outgoing, muscled gym owner and Blake the shy, quiet, plain accountant. Something about Blake instantly attracts Jeremy and he quickly puts the moves on Blake, who is like nobody he has ever been with.

Jeremy doesn't believe in love and dates around. Blake rarely dates and doesn't get emotionally involved with people. He likes his orderly life as it is. Jeremy is tired of being judged as a no-brained gym rat. Blake sees him as a go-getter and smart businessman, even if he does occasionally comment on Jeremy's pretty face or blows off discussing his work. Blake fears he's too boring for the gorgeous, successful Jeremy, who is always commenting on Blake's prestigious job, and figures that it's just a matter of time before Jeremy walks away. What they didn't expect is how quickly they manage to fall into a relationship and how surprisingly well they fit sexually and emotionally - two imperfect men who just might be perfect for each other. With Jeremy, Blake feels safe and is able to be sexually adventurous and give up some control, while Blake brings out the romantic, protective side of Jeremy and makes him feel special, which is something new for him. Another first for both men is believing that love may just be a possibility.

While they both have wonderful siblings they each have big insecurities thanks to their parents. Blake's brought on by his father and Jeremy's by his mother. No matter how good things seem, neither can fully quell their fears and worries. Blake is holding back from completely opening up to Jeremy and Jeremy can't shake the feeling that Blake doesn't see him as an equal, but both men definitely want to hold onto the other as long as it can last.

This is another beautifully written book by Felice Stevens. Jeremy and Blake really bring out the best in each other and I enjoyed watching them navigating the relationship angle of things. Neither has had a serious relationship before and both men struggle with it quite a bit where communication is concerned. Neither is great at it, but Jeremy is more assertive than Blake and does his best to let Blake know what his feelings are. While Blake promises to be open and honest with Jeremy, it's not something that comes easily. They seem to be doing great together until Blake breaks that promise to Jeremy by lying to him when he should be seeking his support and everything spirals out of control. This is where the tension really built, waiting for Blake's house of lies and deception to come crashing down and, if you've read One Call Away, you know a little of what to expect when it does. Soon his emotional turmoil is manifesting itself physically as well, causing him to put even more distance between himself and Jeremy until he makes one more bad decision that completely guts both of them and also gutted me as the reader.

I’ll admit that Blake frustrated me so much at times. His father did a number on his self-esteem as a child and he still carries the emotional scars as a successful adult. He is passive and doubts his worth, not trusting Jeremy's declarations of love to last. He puts up walls and shuts Jeremy out and no matter what Jeremy says to him, he is always telling himself a version of ‘well you say that now but you’ll be gone when you see I’m not worth it’. Jeremy is a sweetheart and just wants someone to put him first and make him feel like he’s a priority in their life. The pressure they both feel to be perfect in the other’s eyes contributes to a lot of the worries and both men have a hard time putting that aside. Luckily they both have Jeremy’s psychologist brother Noah to try and help put things in perspective. I adore how they came full circle, finally realizing there is no such thing as perfection, but there is such a thing as two people being perfect for each other.

This is another winner for Felice Stevens fans or for anyone who likes stories where the road to HEA is a bit bumpy - and the tiniest bit kinky. Both men have to work hard for it but that just makes it all that much sweeter in the end.