Author: Annabelle Jacobs
Publisher: Blanket Fort Press
Pages/Word Count: 11000 Words
At a Glance: Toy with Me earns a solid “A” in the short story telling department.
Reviewed By: Lisa
Blurb: Aaron is hiding something in his drawers—but that’s not his only secret.
When he moves in with his new housemates, Aaron intends to tell them about his sexuality from the outset. But a large pink item of a personal nature, given as a joke, scuppers his plans and he misses his chance.
Fellow housemate Rob is out and proud. He guesses Aaron is gay, and when he finds Aaron’s other secret concealed in his sock drawer, he takes it upon himself to help Aaron out with a little sexual experimentation.
Review: Short stories—it seems readers either love them or don’t, and understandably so, but I do happen to respect them as a time honored storytelling medium. And sometimes I just love the immediacy of the good feelz you get from diving right into the heart of a romance without a lot of angst to build up to it. It’s the get in/get happy/get out that I adore, when all’s said and done.
Annabelle Jacobs’ Toy with Me is a feel-good-romance that, in my humble opinion, works perfectly. As a New Adult story in a collegiate setting, Aaron and Rob aren’t posed as guys who’d have a dense and troubled life history behind them anyway, so the immediacy of their falling in lust with each other in a less-is-more way was not only sweet but believable too.
I loved Aaron’s innocence, the blushing and the trepidation he feels about revealing his sexuality to his new flatmates, even though it’s not at all likely to be an issue. I loved the contrast of Rob’s no nonsense approach to figuring out if Aaron, like Rob himself, is gay, and then leading Aaron to the story’s inevitable conclusion but doing so in such a subtle yet irresistible way.
Toy with Me ticks all the boxes required of a short story. It’s a romantic little tease that brings on more than a few smiles along the way, and, while it didn’t spell everything out for me, it did leave me with the belief that Aaron and Rob will look back quite fondly, decades from now, on their years together as college sweethearts.
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