Review: Not a Game (Friends #1) by Cardeno C.

An accidental meeting and a misunderstanding lead to a life-altering connection.

A new job, a new city, and hopefully a new life. When chubby gamer Oliver Barnaby receives a job offer from the best boutique game developer in the country, he leaves his family and his less than spectacular existence in Oklahoma without a second’s hesitation. Determined to change more than his career and his geography, Oliver implements a plan to finally land a boyfriend. Step one is improving his skills in the bedroom.

A life that looks perfect on paper, but feels empty in reality. Attractive, successful, charismatic Jaime Snow has a life other people envy. His already booming business is growing. He isn’t lacking in friends. And he has no trouble finding a date. But there’s an emptiness in Jaime’s heart and a hole in his life that only the right man can fill.

An accidental meeting, a misunderstanding, and falling in love. When Oliver and Jaime end up at the same bar at the same time, they each see something they want in the other. Going to bed together that first night is easy. Building the lifetime relationship they both desperately crave will require trust, time, and a little misunderstanding.

 I haven't read any Cardeno C. recently and I think I was due for some because I ADORED this story. 

Oliver is new to town with a new job and he's hoping to add a new boyfriend to that list, as well. He doesn't have much experience with relationships and the experience he does have is not positive. He lacks the confidence to not only to start up a conversation and see where things lead, but just going out to meet new people is terrifying for Oliver. So, he hires an escort to show him the ropes - sexually, that is - and build up his confidence before he gets serious about finding his own guy. 

So Jaime and Oliver meet, but Oliver assumes Jaime is the escort... and he's not. Yeah, it's something that's been done before, but I really love how Cardeno C. went about telling Jaime and Oliver's story.

Oliver is overweight and is seriously self-conscious about it. But when Jaime saw him, he wanted Oliver. Wanted him so bad that he went along with the whole "paid escort" deal. I love that the author wrote a character who isn't what is normally considered "beautiful" and gave him a boyfriend who was so totally turned on by him. Oliver was so dorky and unsure and just adorable. I loved their sex scenes. Oliver wanted to get everything right for Jaime, but he failed to realize that he was already everything Jaime wanted. D'awwwww! After years of putting himself down, he found someone who wouldn't change a thing. It gave me all sorts of happy feels.

The entire premise is based on a Big Misunderstanding. You know those. A lot of readers really don't like those. But not to worry, it was handled very well and the men handled it like... well, men.

I was totally in the mood for some sweet M/M contemporary romance and Not a Game delivered. It so delivered. This one is on the top of my Cardeno C. favorites list. If you need an angst-free, loving romance with some hot sex, Not a Game is perfect.

A copy was provided in exchange for an honest review. 

Find out more info on Goodreads.

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