Tuesday, August 19, 2014

ARC Review and Interview: Business or Pleasure by Ashley Ladd

Today I'm hosting Ashley Ladd on the blog for an interview and to talk about Business or Pleasure. Check it out at the end of the post!

Business or Pleasure
Title: Business or Pleasure by Ashley Ladd
Genre: Contemporary, M/M Romance
Expected publication: August 22nd 2014 by Totally Bound
Length: 121 pages

Rating: 3 Stars
Review Copy provided by author

Tommy Boudreaux is extremely attracted to Guy Rogers even though he’s a passionate vegetarian and animal rights activist and Tommy’s family owns the most popular barbecue joint in town.

Guy Rogers is extremely attracted to his new realtor, Tom Boudreaux. As a passionate vegetarian and animal activist, he’s ecstatic that Tom is a kindred soul. He could never be with a carnivore. Unfortunately, Tommy isn’t really a vegetarian or an animal activist. He never said he was, either, he just didn’t eat meat when he was with Guy. And maybe he emptied his house of all meat and dairy products before inviting Guy over. In fact, Tommy’s family owns the most popular barbecue restaurant in town and, if his family has their way, he’ll manage the new location.

When Guy finds out that Tommy eats meat and his family owns a restaurant that’s a monument to eating meat, he’s livid and doesn’t know if he wants anything else to do with Tommy.

But then Guy’s life gets crazy—his dad’s paranoia blossoms into violent dementia, he gets arrested for picketing a doggy mill, then he winds up in even more legal trouble. When Tommy sticks by him through all his trouble and does everything he can to help him, Guy wonders if he’s been too militant and narrow-minded. Perhaps he can learn to live with people who have opposite views.

Purchase Link: https://www.totallybound.com/business-or-pleasure
Adina Falling

2.5 stars rounded up

Guy is an animal rights activist with an extreme pro-animal rights attitude and cannot tolerate eating meat at all. He wants to move out of his dad's place and meets real estate agent, Tom. They are attracted to each other, but Tom isn't a vegetarian and his family runs a barbecue restaurant that Guy would be totally against. Tom tries to hide those facts from Guy but when Guy finds out, he feels betrayed. Guy's dad is also causing trouble for him. Guy has too much going on in his life to try to make a relationship with Tom work out. Trouble escalates when Guy decides to picket Tom's family barbecue restaurant.

The story starts with an animal rights protest that lands Guy in jail. Guy seems like the type of person to ask for too much and doesn't know how to compromise. He has far too many requirements for his ideal house and really troubles Tom. He is also narrow minded and rejects others based on whether they eat meat or not. He can't even handle his neighbor's having a barbecue. Guy's point of view isn't explained in detail until the middle of the story.

Tom is from a troubled family too.  His dad wants him to give up the real estate business to run the family restaurant. Tom, of course, has his own desires and career goals. He's actually very competent.

It's said that Tom and Buy are extremely attracted to each other but I don't see any chemistry between them. Most of their time together is spent looking at houses and assessing them. Also their relationship moves too fast. Tom doesn't want Guy to know his family business and during their first date, Guy asks to meet Tom's family. They are considering buying a house together yet they don't even know each other well and have all those family issues and secrets.

The build up of tension in the story is well done. I like how Guy's dad's dementia intensifies as the story progresses and dumps a bunch of legal mess in Guy's hands. The story shows Guy's and Tom's relationship with its ups and downs. The resolution is very fast and I didn't get the change to see how Guy changes in the end.

Overall, this was a fast read with some exciting parts but the romance wasn't very satisfying.

Author Interview: 

I notice you write a variety of pairings (M/F, M/M, M/F/M, etc). Do you have a different approach to writing each? 

I hadn’t really thought about it. Over the years (I have about 72 published stories) I’ve written more M/F than anything else. The M/M and M/F/M are more recent adventures. I try to dig deeper than ever into a man’s psyche when writing M/M’s. When writing M/F’s I tend to focus more on the female’s pov usually.

What was your inspiration for Tommy and Guy in Business or Pleasure?

A mixture of Food Network, HGTV, and a very outspoken vegetarian/animal activist friend. Just snippets of things I heard and saw all mixed together like a tossed salad.

Do you write of lot of "opposite attracts"? 

Not a whole lot. Secret Admirer is also an opposite attracts story about a nerd who’s in love with a jock. My October release is sort of an opposite attracts story. It’s a ghostly paranormal M/F. The female hotel manager has something evil she has to get out of her hotel and she refuses to believe it’s ghosts or anything supernatural. The hero firmly believes the hotel is haunted by ghosts. They get on each other’s nerves because of their bi-polar beliefs on the subject.

How do you know if your characters are sympathetic?

Hopefully my gut feelings are character on the matter. Sometimes they make me cry, smile, or laugh. Often they’ll tug at my heart or elicit some emotion. Sometimes I worry about them. Then I’ll know they’re sympathetic.

What type of story are you planning to write next?

I’m working on “Gaycation” for Totally Bound’s T5S hotel series. It’s about a BDSM M/M erotic romance writer who attends a gay convention to get more ideas. She winds up getting way more than she bargained for. It’s an M/M/F.

Thank you! I enjoyed answering your questions.



Ashley Ladd


1 comment:

  1. Thank you for hosting me today and for your review. I appreciate your time and effort on my behalf. Ashley