Here For Us

Here For Us - A.M. Arthur Review originally posted at Sinfully.

Cris is 28 and hasn’t really had a long-term relationship. They all seem to end either when his partner finds out he’s bisexual or that he does gay porn, a job he’s reconsidering after being on hiatus. Chet is Cris’ boss and the owner of Mean Green Studios. Cris and Chet have known each other and been attracted to each other for eight years, never acting on it though in deference to their employee/employer relationship. Chet’s been having a tough time as of late, dealing with his nephew Dell’s health crisis and realizing at 48 years old just how lonely he is. His last serious relationship ended badly and made it difficult for him to build trust so instead, he has focused on his business. Enter go-go dancer Jake, the youngest of the three men. Jake is at times impulsive, always ready to push someone away before they can leave him. He’s had it tough the last few years, but managed to land on his feet and is doing okay now, but there is an underlying sadness that never really lets go.

Cris and Jake hook up when they meet at Big Dick’s, where Jake dances (if you’ve read the Perspectives series you’ll recognize the place). The two have sizzling chemistry and they both feel a connection. The next morning Jake acts on impulse to push Cris away, but Cris isn’t going to give up on him that easily. Things only get more complicated when Jake sees Cris and Chet out together and notices that the two men are quite obviously very attracted to each other. From there on it’s a push-and-pull as Cris tries to keep Jake with him and keep his attraction to Chet tamped down as he has for the past 8 years, but again all of it is made even more difficult by Jake’s impulsive actions.

When I started this book, I was almost worried it was going to be more hot sex than plot. It definitely starts off hot and heavy when Cris and Jake meet and hook up, but my fears were quickly revealed to be unfounded as the story soon became more focused the men sorting out their individual relationships with each other and slowly beginning to wonder if maybe the best fix for all of them was not choosing, but building something untraditional, but that felt right to all three of them.

There are two very distinct relationships at play before any talk of the three of them getting together, and Cris is in the middle of it all. He acknowledges that he has feelings for both Jake and Chet and he is honest with Jake about these feelings. Jake doesn’t feel he can compete, especially after meeting Chet and he does what he needs in order to protect himself. Unfortunately, it is also the thing that throws them straight into crisis mode.

There are a lot of ups and downs before these three even think about making things work all together. While there is plenty of drama, it’s not as angsty as some of the author’s other stories. The three men are all different in many ways, but also fit together very well. Cris is loyal and caring as is Chet. They both have the caretaker gene and Jake definitely can benefit from that. Chet also understands Jake’s issues very well.

I liked how things were handled between them. There is a bit of an imbalance at first since Cris and Chet have so much history, even though they were not a couple. Jake barely knows Chet, but acknowledges an attraction and some feelings towards him, but Jake also questions whether the feelings are more than just an emotional bond brought on by the care Chet gave him. As they all spend more time together they really start to open up and find their footing both individually and within this new thing they are trying to build.

Aside from the three MCs there are some secondary characters that seem ready for their story to be told including Chet’s nephew Dell and Cris’ best friend Taro. There are also some guest appearances by main characters from the Perspectives series though you don’t have to have read those books before you start this series.

A.M. Arthur did a wonderful job of keeping all the men’s voices distinct and pacing the relationship differently for all them while still maintaining the chemistry between them. It would have felt unrealistic had they all just dove in on equal footing without voicing their issues and concerns. With the story ending basically as a HFN at the start of their threesome and with some issues raised that weren’t really dealt with, I’m so glad to see the next book will also focus on these three.