Guest Review: Some Assembly Required by Lex Chase and Bru Baker

Everyone wishes they were dead when wandering the purgatory of a home furnishings store, but these guys actually are.

Benji Goss is the quintessential good guy. When his boyfriend dumps him and moves out, Benji obligingly keeps the cat—even though he’s allergic—because his ex’s new place doesn’t accept pets. He’s always joked the cat would be the death of him, but not in a way he expects when a feline mishap crushes him under a DEL TORO bookcase.

Snarky loner Patrick Bryant is in such a rut he barely remembers the life he used to lead. The last thing he recalls is being decapitated by a DEL TORO bookcase in a freak accident. As a spiritual CASA resident, he haunts the aisles of affordable Italian furniture, assisting fellow spirits in moving on to their final destinations.

When Benji appears in the CASA café, Patrick considers the naïve spirit just the man to cure his boredom. Benji’s relentless optimism chips away at Patrick’s sarcasm, making him question if there’s something beyond what he can see. But the heart is like CASA furniture—there’s always some assembly required.

Guest Reviewer: Kristan

No good deed goes unpunished.

At least, that's the case for Benji, who was crushed under a bookcase while trying to help out his neighbor. Now he's wandering the aisles of CASA; where all good spirits go when they meet their unfortunate end at the hands CASA furniture. He'll either accomplish what he needs to, in order to move on, or he'll help save the lives of others from CASA doom. In the meantime, he has Patrick to keep him occupied.

Patrick has been a ghostly guide at CASA for so long that he's forgotten that there's more to his afterlife than helping the newly departed move on. He takes one look at Benji and thinks he'll be a bit of passing fun, but Benji's kindness and innocence slowly chip away at the enormous walls that Patrick has built up around himself. Patrick has rules that he lives by, and now he's breaking all of them.

And he doesn't like it.

No matter how many times he deflects, taunts, or pushes Benji away, it's all for nothing. Benji is wiggling his way into his heart, and their slow burning chemistry becomes downright explosive when Patrick finally gives in.

Like, literally explosive.

But it's more than just the slow burning chemistry these two have. Benji's patience is undeniably sexy, and watching him chip away Patrick's resolve makes this read all the more worth it.
"You deserve good things. You deserve a second chance, and a third one. You deserve all the chances you need to get it right, because you are kind and compassionate. You're a beautiful person inside and out ... If you could see what I see, Patrick, you'd have moved on years ago."

Sometimes, it's not just the furniture that needs fixing, but a person's heart and soul.
"Life is a lot like CASA furniture. It comes in pieces, and some assembly is required."
You know what else is required? A tissue. Or three. Behind all that snark, pranks, and deliberate vagueness, was an unexpected tenderness that kicked me right in the feels. There's healing in this book, and despite a tear shed here and there, it'll leave you with a big smile.

And that delightful Epilogue? It was utter perfection on an already enjoyable read.

A really great twist on a ghost story that still has me smiling, and oddly, craving IKEA meatballs.

Highly recommended.

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