Bad Stepfather Book Cover Bad Stepfather
Guilty Pleasures series Book 3
Romeo Preminger
LGBT Romance Mystery
Independently Published
December 1, 2020
321

A story about finding your way back after a teenage trauma and discovering love along the way, with all the thrills and drama readers have come to expect from gay mm romance author Romeo Preminger.

My name is Elijah Masters, and I haven't been the same since my dad died in an electrical fire. My friends and teachers lifted me up to make it to high school graduation. But away at college, I chose sex and partying to cover up the gaping hole in my heart. I got sent home on academic suspension, and now I'm back in West Palm Beach, Florida, living with my mom.

That's seriously depressing, and then I find out my mom's got a live-in boyfriend. Really thoughtful on her part. We haven't even been through the second anniversary of dad's death, and the guy, Justin, is totally not age-appropriate. He's this sketchy "lifestyle coach," who's really obviously sponging off my mom. To make things ten thousand times worse, Justin's a gorgeous, golden haired fitness god, and as much as I want to hate him, he does things to me I can't control just being in his presence.

My daily escape from Crazytown is working as a barista-in-training at a coffee shop, where oddly enough this kid Mike Shatz holes up to study. We went to middle school and high school together, though we traveled in different circles. I don't know Mike's deal, but I remember he had it kind of tough. The rap on Mike was he was slow, but I think it's more like he's on the spectrum. People in our town are pretty ignorant, and meanwhile Mike's really come into his own. I'm kind of falling in love with his dark brown, wavy shag of hair.

I don't know if anything is going to come of that, but I need to keep an eye on Justin. I've got this feeling he's after something, and I've got to wake my mom up to the game he's playing.

A genre-bending thriller that's part family drama, part mm new adult romance, and part high stakes mystery suspense.

Reviewed by Linda Tonis

Member of the Paranormal Romance Guild Review Team

Elijah Masters had his life fall apart beginning his senior year in high school when his beloved father was killed in an electrical fire. Everyone rallied around him to get him through his senior year so he could attend Stanford University with a scholarship. Unfortunately when he got to Stanford he did everything wrong including submitting a report that he plagiarized. Suspended and having to return home was devastating but it was just the beginning of the nightmare that his life turned into.

 

It has been less than two years since his father’s death and when he gets home he is greeted by a man much younger than his mother and he is now his mom’s fiance. Justin Michael is not what Elijah would ever have expected his mother to pick, he is handsome, a health food fanatic and apparently with no income of his own. Making matters worse is the fact that as a gay man Elijah can’t help his attraction to his mother’s fiance.

 

Elijah gets a job at a coffee shop hoping to save enough money to move out of his mother’s home and it was there that he first saw Mike Shatz, a kid from high school who was always rumored to be slow. Mike has ADHD dyslexia and processing disorder but he is in a two year college working towards getting into a four year one. Mike is gay and always had a thing for Elijah in school but they ran in a totally different crowd. Elijah sees that Mike is a very special kind of guy and very different. 

 

It is Mike and his other friends that are responsible for pulling Elijah out of the depression he has found himself in all over Justin. Justin is a monster with a smile that draws you in and when Elijah finally realizes the full extent of his deception and evilness and confronts his mom she takes Justin’s side. Justin always seems to be one step ahead of Elijah and always comes out smelling like a rose. 

 

I won’t go into detail about Justin’s actions or Elijah’s but Elijah never stood a chance against a man whose entire life was built on deceit and lies. This was not a happy read but it was a journey that Elijah had to take to come out a winner. Mike and Elijah work on a relationship and Mike is just a wonderful character who in spite of Elijah’s mess ups finds a way to overlook them. 

 

The book was a love story, a story of overcoming odds and a chance for a do over. 

0