Title: His Leading Man
Author: Ashlyn Kane
Series: Standalone Title
Genre: M/M Contemporary Romance
Publisher: DreamSpinner Press (A DreamSpun Desires Title)
Release Date: June 5 2018
Edition/Format: 1st Edition/Format~ Audio, eBook, Print
Rating: 3.5 Stars
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book for review from RBTL Book Promotions and the author. I was not compensated nor was I required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am posting this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising".
He wrote a comedy. Fate directed a romance.
Drew Beaumont is bored of the same old roles: action hero, supervillain, romantic lead. He’s not going to let a fresh gay buddy comedy languish just because they can’t find him the right costar. No, Drew bats his eyelashes and convinces everyone that the movie’s writer should play Drew’s not-so-straight man.
Aspiring writer Steve Sopol has never had a screenplay optioned. Now one of Hollywood’s hottest properties wants to be in a movie Steve hasn’t finished writing— and he wants Steve as his costar. Turns out the chemistry between them is undeniable—on and off-screen.
Drew swore off dating in the biz, but Steve is the whole package: sharp, funny, humble, and cute. For Steve, though, giving in to the movie magic means the end of the privacy he cherishes. Will the credits roll before their ride into the sunset?
Barnes and Noble
Drew Beaumont wants to work with someone he can connect with. Steven “Steve” Sopol may have a new side job. What I like about him is that he gives us an insider look at the process that is needed to create something for our enjoyment – kind of like an author.
This was a new author for me so it did take me a bit to get used to her writing style. It took a while to see where this was going. I didn’t feel any type of connection to our main characters. I felt more like someone standing along the sidelines watching everything unfold. Considering that Steve is a writer, I expected to laugh more. I had a chuckle here and there but maybe it’s a case of I just didn’t get it. But I was able to get the awkward moments.
Certain scenes seemed to move pretty quickly – like someone turned up the speed on the movie. Like when Drew asked Steve to join him at an event. I felt as if something was missing or got skimmed over. One good thing was that we got to know the main characters. They let us in, at least a little bit, to see who they are as a person and not just their public persona. And at least Drew shows that actors are human.
I think that this is one of those books that I have to read again. By the time I got to the end I just felt as if I was missing something. I was happy with the ending but just not sure where things got turned around and I got lost. On the upside, I don’t like giving up on an author if I just don’t connect the first time around. Will just have to see what else she has to offer.
“Oh, get out of here. Go home. Go find some pretty young thing and make the most of what’s left of the night.”
Without meaning to, Drew glanced over at Steve, who was talking to Flora. “Not really my thing.”
Nina eyed him shrewdly. “Oh? Like them a little older than you, do you?”
Damn it. “I don’t date.”
She let out a lewd chuckle. “Who said anything about dating?”
“Nina!” Drew hissed. Fortunately no one seemed to be paying them any attention, everyone dragging ass to get ready to leave for the day—or else hightailing it, fueled on some kind of post work energy infusion Drew would very much like the recipe for. “I’m not going to screw around with a costar. I’m more professional than that!”
Nina raised one well-manicured eyebrow in an incredibly articulate retort. Okay, so she probably knew him too well to buy what he was selling. He didn’t date in the business, but that had never stopped him from hooking up with other actors and actresses who shared his philosophy.
Well. Maybe Drew should just be true to himself. “Whatever. I gotta go, Nina. See you tomorrow!”
If he hurried, he could catch up with Steve in Wardrobe.
By the time he got there to hang up his expertly tailored jeans and gossamer-thin T-shirt, Steve was unfolding his own cargo shorts. “Hey. You got big plans tonight?”
Drew winced. “I still have to hit the gym.” He’d skipped working out too many days this week. “But first, fuel.” He slipped his belt through the loops and set it in its cubby. “You?”
“I run in the mornings.”
Of course he did. Drew wanted to ask And the shoulders? but he had too much self-respect. Okay, champ. Here’s your chance. “What about this Saturday?”
Steve paused with his hand on his fly. “I’m running then too?”
Drew narrowed his eyes, trying to decide if he was playing hard-to-get or being obtuse. “After that. Seven o’clock, eight if we want to be fashionably late and make an entrance.”
Steve paused, brow furrowed. “Are you, uh…?”
Not exactly the resounding yes Drew had been hoping for, but he injected his voice with as much confidence as he could fake. “I’m asking you to dinner.” And then abruptly his feigned confidence fled and he added, “My date canceled to go to Hawaii, and the idea of spending four hours in a tux eating canapés and schmoozing with people who spent a thousand dollars a plate to schmooze with me makes me hate humanity.”
“Gosh, you’re such a people person,” Steve said, drier than a stale saltine in Vegas. “I can’t imagine why you have trouble finding dates.”
Ouch. Drew probably deserved that. “Sorry, that just… ugh. Let me start over?” He unbuttoned his jeans and started shimmying out of them. The process took a few seconds. “I have an extra ticket to a fundraiser dinner at the aquarium. I guess the penguins need a new air conditioner or something. I always take Leigh to stuff like this because I know she’s not using me for publicity and she can hold up her end of the conversation without trying to get in my pants.” He finally got the skinny jeans down to his ankles, but he didn’t dare kick them off because Will would murder him if the seams ripped. Instead he bent to work them over his feet. “But she can’t come. And I like spending time with you.”
Damn it. When Drew glanced up, Steve still didn’t look convinced. He certainly wasn’t jumping at the chance to spend a night off with Drew. Maybe Drew had read him wrong.
But finally his expression cleared and he said, “Pick me up at seven.”
There was just one problem, of course.
Drew still didn’t know if it was a date. Or even if he wanted it to be.
ASHLYN KANE is a Canadian former expat and current hockey fan. She is a writer, editor, handyperson, dog mom, and friend—sometimes all at once.
On any given day she can usually be found walking her ninety-pound baby chocolate lapdog, Indy, or holed up in her office avoiding housework. She has a deep and abiding love of romance novel tropes, a habit of dropping too many f-bombs, and—fortunately—a very forgiving family.