Review: Imperfect by A.E. Ryecart

From the moment City corporate lawyer Josh Cooper saw Alex Fulbright in the crowded café, he knew his life would never be the same again.

With looks, money and success, Josh has everything, but his life isn’t as perfect as it seems. Alex, too, has his issues, craving a quiet life as he recovers from a trauma that has left him scarred and broken.

From hesitant beginnings, Josh and Alex finally find the love with one another that neither thought they would ever have. But is Alex hiding something? Josh is forced to question how much he really knows Alex and, after a chance encounter where Alex’s past is dragged into the present, Josh is faced with a stark choice: can he accept the whole of who Alex is, or must he walk away from the only man he has ever truly loved?

First off, let's get comfy before I start the review, huh? You get the snacks, I'll get the booze. Trust me, we'll need it.

I don't know where to begin. I have a barrel full of quotes and a shelf worth of alcohol. This is a book that if someone rated it a 1, I totally would get it. And if they rated it a 5, I'd understand. Because while this wasn't the best story written, I was entertained. I think I hated just about all the characters. Wait. I liked Liam, the best friend of Alex. And I pitied the hell out of Alex, the naive twink and star of the book. *pours* But the other main players aren't fit to lick the bottom of my shoe.

So...let me top off my glass while I start off with there is cheating. The author kind of tries to be slick with technicalities but Josh seeks out a relationship with Alex while still in a relationship with Dan. Josh could deny it all he wants from now until the second coming but he had a boyfriend, even if it was one sided. And it was emotional cheating. *sips*

And I think I'll just blurt out my feels because I thought this book was going to be seedy hook ups and alley way sex when the boyfriend wasn't home. Dirty call me when you get home so I jerk off when he's not looking. And it wasn't. It really wasn't. It was tamer in some aspects, like instead of cry-fests and slap-fests, it was kind of orderly. Not overly drama llama. Well except for that boyfriend. He brought the histrionics. *points* That is what I came for. Messy, bitching out. Worth the price of admission. Yeah!!!!!!

Josh is an older lawyer type who is in a relationship, cheats on his boyfriend and is a jerk. He hates commitment and yet finds himself saddled down with a boyfriend because it's convenient. He has a pre-midlife crisis of sorts when he sees a young blonde twink (Alex) working in the cafe. He saves him from being bullied and bullies his way into Alex's life. Now Alex has a past and it's very apparent what happened to him with his past boyfriend and yet he goes directly to Josh, a controlling, manipulative type who goes away without telling him where and when for days on end. He hides his phone, etc. Obvious things that are warning signs for most single people but not gullible Alex. *chugs* Thankfully, there's a Liam in Alex's life.
Liam: He was blunt and I can respect that. He was rough at first. But you know what? Head-in-the-damn-clouds Alex needed a friend like him because he kept getting hurt over and over again. And if Alex had no self-preservation, at least Liam had his best interests. Liam's way might be with his fists but sometimes there are people you just can't use words with. Pounding it out just is easier. *shrugs and gulps*

Josh is an asshole. It's not even about the cheating for me. He's a loathsome character and I really wished Liam was able to unleash the beast on him at least once. I would have 5 Hearted this book in a heartbeat if Josh got his asshole handed to him in a brown paper bag. *deep sigh* Josh was manipulative and an emotional abuser. And he knew what Alex went through and he still treated him like that? Alex could do better. Josh knew which buttons to push and how make Alex come to heel in a few amount of words. It was pathetic and yet fascinating. Like watching a train wreck.

The book runs high on emotions and reads like a soap opera and yet I devoured this 300 pg book in less than 24 hours. It was a case of  "I can't believe he's going to fall for this, let me see what he'll do next". The book was slightly drawn out. It could have been shaved 20-25%, but the major plot points made sense. And for a messy, tawdry plot, it didn't end up as messy or tawdry as I thought. And there were unexpected twists, some that went deeper than I expected. Trigger warnings: Off page rape/physical abuse.

Do I think Alex and Josh actually have a shot? Hell no. This is a case where the age difference and life experiences will come to bite them in the ass in the future. Thank goodness, this is fiction.

Alex needs to be taken into a witness protection program and Josh needs to have a double date with Liam's fists and boots. Alex has no voice in his relationship and the fact that he thinks he has a say is sad. Ruuuuuuuuuuuuuuuun Alex! Come over here, it's a Josh free zone! Boo Josh!

On the SRAL scale of cray cray, this couple rates a 2 out of 7: We get it you're in each others pocket 24/7. Good for you. Low factor crazy.

*looks into empty glass* But I was entertained as hell. Wouldn't read it again, but I enjoyed the ride!

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