C Is for Comfort (The Alphabet of Desire #3), Colette Davison
Rating: 2 Stars
Publisher: Colette Davison
Genre: Gay Erotic Romance
Tags: Contemporary, Age Gap, BDSM/Kink, Family, Romance
Length: 332 Pages
Purchase At: Amazon
*** This review is full of spoilers. ***
A single dad, a doctor, and a one-night-stand. Is there room in their lives and hearts for one another?
Stress is my middle name. I’m a single dad and a newly qualified teacher, so it’s hard to find time for myself. What I didn’t expect from an adult party is a man who allows me to relax fully. What starts as a hook-up becomes so much more, but is a ready made family a step too far for Spence?
Working crazy shifts at the hospital, I don’t have much time for romance. Meeting Corey, the beautiful boy who’s happy to call me Daddy, changes everything. Only it’s not just his heart I have to win over but his five-year-old daughter’s too. How hard can it be?
C is for Comfort is the story of two men learning that life is about more than work and that cuddling can fix everything. It’s the third of three steamy, low angst novels, which follow each of the ABC triplets as they find love. You can read Archie and Blake’s stories in A is for Aftercare and B is for Beg.
An age-gap M/M romance.
Corey (an art teacher) and Spence (an emergency room physician) meet and hook up at Hamish’s kink party in the first book. What was supposed to be a quickie one-night-stand turns into more when Lexi (Corey’s five-year-old daughter) breaks her arm at school and Spence is the doctor on duty. Corey and Spence start getting together for sex after Spence passes his number to Corey as he and Lexi are leaving the hospital. It’s just sex, nothing more, because Corey makes it clear that he’s too busy and too committed to his little girl for more.
Of course it turns into more.
I’m just going to put this out there… I didn’t like Corey AT ALL. I didn’t like him in B Is For Beg (Blake’s book) and I really, REALLY didn’t like him in his own book. I have my reasons for not liking him, most of them being because of Blake.
- He used the hell out of Archie and Blake – mainly Blake. Why mainly Blake? Because Corey wrongly assumed that the middle triplet (Blake) was lazy and didn’t do much of anything except sleep all day and ‘get his pictures taken’. As in, how hard can it be to be a model? He literally said (not to Blake), “How hard can it be?” Not only did Blake pick up Corey’s daughter almost every single day from school, but he also cooked for her, played dress-up with her (when her own dad wouldn’t), and took care of her in ways Corey never did. He was more of a father to that child than Corey was. Yes, he was busy with his new job teaching but come on. And we can’t forget how Corey always, ALWAYS expected Blake to drop everything – including plans with his men – so Corey could meet up with Spence for a booty call. Two nights in a row Blake cancelled plans for Corey, plus he got up at a ridiculous hour one of those mornings to take Lexi to a movie and to McDonald’s. The latter was done so Corey could have a bit of a break, to sleep in. Even after that, he pushes and pushes until Blake cancels his plans with Calvin and Gabe.
- At one point in the book it’s understood that they (the triplets and Lexi) will have to move out of the home they’ve shared for years. Archie is moving in with Hamish, and Blake and Corey simply can’t afford to stay there without his third of the rent. Blake makes the very difficult decision to encourage Corey to move into a 2-bedroom home that Blake actually finds for him – without Blake. It was obvious that Blake was depressed over it, but he knew he was doing the right thing. Did Corey even PRETEND to care about Blake’s feelings? Hell no. It was all about Corey. When I read that I was thinking, “Uh huh. Now you’ll get to see exactly how much you depended on the brother you think is a total airhead – the same brother who does a hell of a lot more for your daughter than you do.”
- Now the biggie… when Blake was dealing with the above-mentioned pain of Corey not even pretending that he’d like them to all stay living together, what does Corey do? He throws him under the freaking bus with their parents – the parents who always made Blake feel less than and made it clear they loved Corey and Archie more than Blake.
I can’t help feeling like this is partly my fault. I shouldn’t have told Mum and Dad that Blake has decided not to live with Lexi and me. It was his news to tell when he was ready.
Ya think? Partly his fault? No, Corey, it was ALL your fault.
In the event it’s not obvious, I loved Blake a lot. In his book I was able to see his raw emotions over his ‘less than’ feelings with regard to his mom and dad, and hell, even his brothers, though Archie wasn’t as big of a bastard as Corey was.
Since I’m on a roll, and yes, I’m aware that I’ve barely touched the surface of the actual story, I’ll throw out a few more things I hated about Corey.
- He allowed Lexi to treat Spence horribly. When he should’ve acted like, you know, her parent, he let her run all over him. There’s being concerned about your child because you’ve never brought anyone (male or female) home before, but to let her treat Spence the way she did early on was inexcusable. I kept asking, “Who is the parent here?” She got better later, but it had nothing to do with Corey getting firm and being a parent. It was all because of Spence and his patience and kindness.
- God, Corey was such a doormat and not just with his daughter. Lexi’s mother’s parents would call with only an hour’s notice and demand to take Lexi for the weekend. It wouldn’t even matter if they had plans. Corey always gave in until finally one time he didn’t. Seriously, a big doormat. He whined and complained about some of the kids he was teaching being somewhat out of control. Instead of doing what any GOOD teacher would do, he allowed it to happen because he was too much of a wuss not to.
- On top of using Blake, he used the hell out of Spence too in the beginning. It was all about ‘fuck and run’ – their words, not mine – with him popping in to see Spence just long enough for sex and then he was taking off for home so he could pretend to be father of the year. Yes, Spence got a lot out of it as well, but Corey made it clear he wasn’t interested in anything more than ‘relieving his stress’ by having rough sex with Spence. He never asked about Spence’s day or how he was doing, even after they officially became a couple. It was ALL about Corey, Corey, Corey.
What I loved…
- Spence. Oh, how I loved him. He had the patience of a saint with pretty much everybody – Corey, Lexi, his sister Emily, and his niece and nephew, Tabitha and Robbie. Emily was your classic busybody sibling that’s in so many books these days. She felt it was her duty to butt into every aspect of Spence’s life. Thankfully, she wasn’t on-page but a few times. Spence was just perfect all the way around. He was the perfect boyfriend slash Daddy, uncle, brother, friend, and almost stepfather. He was so good to Corey and Lexi, even when Lexi was treating him horribly.
- Blake, if you haven’t figured it out already. Of the triplets he’s by far the best one, in my opinion. He’s always been treated as lazy but he’s anything but. He’s the one his brothers (and Lexi) can count on the most, though the author kind of made it look like Archie was that person. Blake was used so much and it broke my heart when Corey didn’t really defend him to his horrible parents, even sharing things with his mom and dad that were NOT his to share. It was Blake’s story to tell, not Corey’s or anybody else’s. But Corey, like Archie, was the parents’ golden child who basically agreed with them anyway when it came to Blake. Why would he defend Blake who was literally part of him?
Now that I’ve grumbled, I’ll say more about the story.
Corey and Spence go from the ‘fuck and run’ dates to more fairly quickly. They both have a lot in common. Corey is an art teacher and artist. Spence surprises him by knowing a lot about art himself. The art visuals I’ve used in this review were talked about in the book, with George Stubbs’ Whistlejacket and The National Gallery being specifically important to one part of the book. That love of art came into play a lot when Spence was organizing dates with Corey. There’s sweet and wanting to do something to make your partner happy, and then there’s Spence’s Aww! moments.
I listed BDSM and kink in the tags but there wasn’t a whole lot in this book compared to the first two. A Is For Aftercare (#1) had what I considered to be a bit too much. B Is For Beg (#2) was perfect and it wasn’t overdone. C Is For Comfort (#3) barely scratched the surface beyond Corey calling Spence Daddy, a few blindfolds, and having sex at Hamish’s parties a couple of times in front of people. Corey calling Spence Daddy just seemed… off.
Overall, the story was just okay. I admit to going into this book not liking Corey from the last two books, and I know that didn’t help in his own story. I did, as I said, love Spence. Spence was a very busy emergency room doctor. No doubt his position was much more stressful than Corey’s considering he saw death a lot. But it all came down to Corey and his issues, not Spence’s. I understand it’s hard for single parents, but Corey had a support system a majority don’t have. He had Archie, Blake, and even his horrible parents – horrible only to Blake, not Corey or Archie. His ‘woe is me’ spiel got old in the first book and got worse throughout the series. He acted like he was the only single parent in the world, and even had the audacity to act like Blake wasn’t doing his part, again, when Blake was pretty much doing it all.
I’m glad I read the series because I did like seeing each brother find their own HEA. I just wish I could’ve forced myself to like Corey even a little bit. Unfortunately, I ended this disliking him more as I got to know him. He was just so damn whiny and needy. If I was basing my review on Corey alone, I don’t know that I’d even rate the book, or it would be a solid 1 star. As much as I loved Spence, even he couldn’t take it over 2 stars.