The Florist by Serena Yates

The Florist by Serena Yates
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Genre: Contemporary
Length: Short Story (121 pages)
Other: M/M, anal intercourse
Rating: 4 stars
Reviewed by Honeysuckle

When freelance florist Dylan White gets a call that a good friend has died and left him a flower shop, Dylan isn’t sure he wants the commitment. Still, he travels to Florida to speak with the law firm, where he meets defense attorney Sean Mellick in the corridor. Sean makes a point of “running into” Dylan again, and Dylan eventually agrees to a date.

While romance blooms between the two men, their careers aren’t going as smoothly. Dylan faces employee resistance and sabotage, then inexplicable expenses leave him on the verge of bankruptcy. An offer to sell that sounds too good to be true makes him suspicious and he asks Sean for help. Though they’ve had very little time together, Dylan and Sean need each other to work through the issues and plant the seeds for the future they both want.

A commitment-phobe floral designer inherits a business and gains the attention of someone who gives him all the reason he needs to finally put down his own roots. Poetic irony? Just a little.

It seemed like the buildup was almost too slow but I think the author was trying to create the relationship, in the readers mind, with Dylan’s friend, Mike, who had passed away since that was his reason for being in Florida in the first place. Also, his introspection about losing his friend seemed to be a turning point in his previous ability for a long term commitment. I say all of that to encourage readers to stick with the slower moments because they have merit to the story.

Sean and Dylan’s first date was so sweet. I liked the realism in their conversation and expectations. They’re a really sweet couple. I was cheering for their HEA a little more with every date. And on the flipside of the slower opening of this story, once Sean and Dylan decide to give in to their insta-lust, the action never stopped.

Dylan’s first meeting with the manager of his new store was firey! The tension level of the story goes up several degrees in just a few moments since I knew, from the blurb, that trouble was on it’s way to Dylan’s doorstep. I immediately started watching Flint for signs that he would be the instigator. It was obvious that Flint felt that he had some vested interest, a lot really, in the business. Or maybe he was just worried about his position and thought intimidation would guarantee his job. Considering the fact that Dylan was now dating a lawyer, I couldn’t wait to see how this would all play out.

Speaking of Sean’s profession, I didn’t expect that thread of the plot. I like that the author didn’t leave all the drama and tension on one side of this story. Two main characters, each with their issues and yet, they had common ground. It all played out in a neat little package that worked.

Readers who like a little intrigue and drama with their romance should give The Florist a read. What I thought would be a simple little love story turned into a much more exciting adventure.

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