Review: Tribute Act (Porthkennack #8) by Joanna Chambers

Nathan Bridges hadn’t intended to settle down in his home town of Porthkennack—he just ended up staying after saving the family business from ruin. The truth is, Nathan can’t stop himself from stepping in when problems arise. He’s a fixer, the man everyone turns to. But even fixers can’t solve everything.

When Nathan’s sister needs an organ transplant, it’s his stepbrother, Mack, who the family turns to as Rosie’s only potential living donor. Nathan’s curiosity about the stepbrother he’s never met turns to shock when he realises that Mack is his latest—and hottest ever—one-night stand.

Nathan and Mack agree to forget their single night together, but that’s easier said than done. When Mack moves in to Nathan’s place to recuperate after surgery, it’s not just the sexual tension between them that keeps growing. Against all the odds, and despite Mack’s wariness of intimacy, the two men grow close enough that Nathan begins to wonder what it would take to mend the rift that’s kept Mack and his father estranged for over a decade . . . and whether Mack might consider staying with Nathan in Porthkennack for good.

Nathan and Mack first meet when Nathan escapes for one night from his business and family obligations to have fun and blow off some steam. Their one-night stand was great, but both feel more than just a physical connection that night.

However, neither expect to ever run into each other again. That is until an odd family connection brings the two back together in a very awkward and tense situation.

I immediately connected to Nathan. He’s extremely down-to-earth, and his worries are relatable. He’s concerned with his business and his family, and he also thinks that he could stand to lose a few pounds. He’s your average joe.

Plus, Nathan has heart in spades.

Mack comes off as pretty standoffish at first. But it’s obvious that it’s a defence mechanism, the result of a less-than-perfect childhood. There’s an underlying vulnerability behind Mack’s hard exterior that made me root for him from the start.

It’s also obvious from the get-go that Mack isn’t as indifferent to Nathan as he pretends to be.

Despite their hook-up early in the book, Mack and Nathan’s relationship builds quite slowly. Bit by bit, the two become friends. They settle into a routine while Mack recovers from his surgery, neither willing to admit that they’re falling for each other.

I thought they were incredibly sweet together. Nathan has an urge to take care of Mack, while Mack can’t help but respond to someone finally putting him first.


Though there’s a fair bit of angst and lack of communication in this book, the romance was fairly mellow. I found it easy to just sit back and watch Mack and Nathan fall in love.

However, I wasn’t entirely won over by Mack and Nathan’s family. They took a lot, without giving much back. I just couldn’t forgive the selfishness as easily as Nathan and Mack did, even though I thought it was all entirely realistic.

It takes Nathan and Mack time and hard work to get to a place where they can have their happy ever after. But once the two get their act together, it’s obviously the real deal for them.

Overall, I enjoyed ‘Tribute’. Mack and Nathan’s romance isn’t particularly grand, but it’s realistic and relatable. If you’re looking for a slow MM romance with a lot of focus on family, give this book a try!

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