Title: Love You Like a Romance Novel (The Missing Butterfly #2)
Author: Megan Derr
Publisher: Less Than Three Press
Length: 63k words
Genre: m/m Contemporary Romance
Heat: 3 – Sexy & Mild
Sex Frequency: 3 – Average Story to Sex
Keywords/Tags: Series, Rockers, Incest (Cousins), Lawyers, Secrets & Lies, Family Issues
Rating: Pretty Good
Jet gave up everything to make it to the top of rock. On track to take over his family’s business and wealth, he defied everyone to start at the bottom and work his way up to become drummer of one of the world’s most popular bands, Forever and a Dai. And his family might have forgiven him if he hadn’t taken his cousin Dai with him.
Jason is everything Jet chose not to be: an obedient son, a powerful and respected lawyer, wealthy, established, and set to inherit the family kingdom. Dai’s brother, and Jet’s cousin, he is a constant reminder of everything Jet should be and is not.
But everybody has secrets, and those secrets are all about to come out.
Just about everyone knows of my love for Megan Derr now, but I have to admit — even though The Missing Butterfly was the first book of hers that I read, it’s never been my favorite. I loved it, don’t get me wrong. But I love her fantasy books so much that it has eclipsed that book in a way, and I haven’t read it since that first time. So, I was anxious to read this first full length sequel. Not only has it been forever since I read the first book, so I can’t remember enough about it, but how would I feel about another contemporary from Ms. Derr? That’s why I waited to read it, until the entire book was released, rather than reading it as a serial on the Less Than Three website.
And I wasn’t disappointed. It’s true that it wasn’t my favorite of her books, not even near. Maybe I just like her fantasy/paranormal work better… I’m not sure. But, I still really liked it. And I didn’t even have to remember the characters from the first book well — they only make short cameos.
Love You Like a Romance Novel is a story about one clusterfuck of a family. That’s right, they’ve lied and kept secrets from one another for so long (usually about money and power) that they’re all now strangers tied to one another by tradition and wealth. Except for two of them. Jason is the dutiful son that has worked for his father’s every wish, waiting for who knows what? A sense of accomplishment and pride from his father, maybe. It does serve one purpose though, to watch over his younger brother Dai and the man he’s loved for years now, his cousin Jet. Jason is an entertainment lawyer, working dutifully for Dai and Jet’s band, Forever and a Dai, but his spare time is filled with his secret pleasure and job, writing romance novels. It’s a huge secret. He’s known to have a cold heart, and any temptation to show his true feelings, his true nature, would clue everyone into his unrequited feelings for his cousin.
Things change when Jet finds out Jason’s secret and uses it to blackmail Jason into a relationship. It’s his only way to be close to his cousin Jason, Jet thinks, so Jason only thinks that Jet is cruel, no matter how much he also loves him. But Jet has reasons to not trust anyone in his family, except Dai that is. He’s never been forgiven by his father for leaving and denying his place as rightful heir to his father’s food service kingdom. He wanted to be a musician, and the worst mistake he made, according to them, was to take Dai with him. Now the family is divided, and the death of Jet’s father and his subsequent reading of the last will and testament will throw a wrench into all of their plans and their relationships.
Honestly, I don’t remember the first book that well, so I can’t draw many comparisons. I think, though, that this book is quite a bit darker if I remember correctly. While there was a life based on lies (Cassidy) in the first book, there is also a cast of characters whose lives are based on lies in this sequel, but on a much broader scale. You can’t really blame Jason, Jet and Dai. I mean, their fathers are the ones who raised them that way. But this is a family that shows what money can do to people, how it can sever close ties and cultivate greed. While I tend to not particularly like stories where all of the characters are tangled in lies (it just becomes a little bit too much for me), I found that I really liked Jet and Jason — especially Jason, who shows just how devoted he is to his cousin and little brother, without any praise for the things he does in secret.
Fans of this author and of The Missing Butterfly will definitely want to read this sequel. I would also encourage anyone who might be turned away from the incest romance to ignore that and give this a try anyway. Most likely, it will not bother you and might not be the type of relationship/dynamic that you’re expecting.