“While money can’t buy happiness, it certainly lets you choose your own form of misery.” ― Groucho Marx
Author: Christopher Koehler
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Pages/Word Count: 320
Rating: 5 Stars
Blurb: Stuart Cochrane and Philip Sundstrom make an unlikely pair. Philip’s brother, Brad, can’t imagine his brother with another man, let alone with the coxswain he razzed throughout his college rowing career. But somehow they settle into a relationship that works as Philip helps Stuart navigate the pressures of deciding between medical school and competing for a spot on the national rowing team. In turn, Stuart helps Philip with his problems at work, where he’s faced with a rebellious board of directors.
Yet soon enough, the pressures take their toll. Stuart comes to resent the easy way Philip spends money, while Philip worries about Stuart’s time commitments. He’ll do anything to come to the rescue, including spending his money to grease the rails for Stuart, but Stuart resents the rich so much it drives a wedge between them.
Then Stuart finds himself facing the greatest crisis of his life. There’s only one person he can turn to—but Philip has his own demons to battle in the form of his board trying to frame him for their own unethical actions. Will Philip be able to aid Stuart while he extricates himself from his board’s trap, or will his divided attention cost them both everything that matters?
Review: I was so looking forward to this book. I have loved Stuart since the first book, and I am so happy that he finally got his story. I was also happy to see Philip get a little bit of happy in his life.
Stuart has always been the smallest guy in the crowd. Not surprising since he hangs out with a bunch of rowers. He doesn’t have much money, and he has to work hard for everything he has. Stuart has just graduated from college and is getting ready to start Medical School. The very last thing he needs in his life is any complications. So, of course that is exactly what he gets with Philip Sundstrom.
Philip Sundstrom is a savvy businessman who did exactly what he had to do to save the family company after his father was sent to jail. Recently, he has realized that not all of his board members are happy with him at the helm of the company, and are plotting his downfall. After ending a relationship he thought may have been forever, he isn’t quite ready for Stuart when he enters his life, but he will be damned if he is going to turn him away.
These two men, Stuart and Philip, couldn’t be more different if they tried. Philip has worked his entire life to be successful. He is now a rich successful businessman, and he wants to do everything he can to make Stuart happy. Stuart, on the other hand, is scraping by after being thrown out of his family. He has very little money, and he can’t stand to be anyone’s charity case.
After one too many times of Philip “throwing his money around,” Stuart calls it quits and tries to restructure his world without Philip in it. Philip is heartbroken, but he has a company to save and can’t dwell on the loss. He ends up working himself into the ground and losing contact with the outside world, and he really couldn’t care less. Without Stuart, he doesn’t want to interact with the outside world anyway.
When tragedy strikes Stuart’s family Philip decides that he is going to be there for the man he loves whether he likes it or not. As much as Stuart hates to, he leans on Philip and lets him take over the situation. It turns out to be the very best thing he has ever done.
I loved this fourth book in the series. It is great to get a visit with all of my favorite characters from the previous books and to see the new relationship with Stuart and Philip. These two had enough issues between them for three books, but it was enjoyable to watch them work it all out. Stuart had to learn to take help when he needed it, and Philip had to learn to listen to Stuart’s wants and needs. Eventually the two will find a happy medium, but the road they traveled to get there was very entertaining.
I highly recommend this book and the entire series. Christopher Koehler has made me fall in love with rowing and all of the men that love it too.