The Fifth Favor by Shelby Reed was a very engrossing read. It’s the story about a reporter and a gigolo. About two people finding each other, needing each other and meeting each other at the right time in their life. It’s a love story. Aren’t they all?
Billie Cort is a reporter out for the story of her career: to do a story on the male escort service at Azure. The target of her story is none other than Adrian Atoli who is the most popular male escort at Azure. Adrian is a conflicted man. He is tortured and has a lot of baggage. Meanwhile, Billie is frustrated with life and love and finds herself utterly fascinated by Adrian. Billie is granted an interview for the magazine Illicit with the elusive star of Azure but then suddenly, tragedy strikes and the interview of a lifetime is yanked.
There are a lot of struggles in this book. The story is somewhat darker. It read a like cycle of highs and lows. There were some great moments in the book between the protagonists. The author continues to create wonderful chemistry and great atmosphere. I enjoyed this book very much. There were many conflicts in the story. Adrian feels that he cannot have a healthy, normal relationship outside of Azure but after meeting Billie Cort, he plays with fire and falls hard. Billie seems to represent everything that is good and wholesome about life while Adrian has only seen the seedier side of life.
Adrian’s family has no idea about his career choice and Billie’s editor has no idea that she is carrying on an affair with the subject of her interview. The contrivances that keep them apart and eventually bring them back together were realistic and evolved out the natural progression of the story. I did feel that the story at time could have been shorter. The introspection and internal struggles went on a bit too long, I thought. Also, the author doesn’t consummate the relationship until we get near the end of the story. There were many moments before that – that I thought they would and didn’t. However, there’s plenty of foreplay to keep you entertained.
The secondary characters like Adrian’s family and such were interesting and rounded out the story well enough. Characterization was pretty solid especially for Adrian’s character as well as the dialogue and story. This story reminded of yet another book, Fallen From Grace by Laura Leone. So if you’ve enjoyed Ms. Leone’s book, then you would certainly enjoy this one. Would The Fifth Favor be a book I would read more than once? Jury is still out on that one. It’s not a keeper for me but it was still, a very good book and a strong recommend.
[Tags]Shelby Reed, The Fifth Favor, Ellora’s Cave, Romantica Review[/tags]