The Long Way Around by Quinn Anderson
LGBTQ+ Contemporary Romance
Sam Cooper and Wesley Reed have been friends since freshman year of college despite being completely different in personality. They’re so close that people often mistake them for a couple or assume they’ve at least slept together. But honestly, they’re just friends — at least they are until a road trip across the country leaves both Sam and Wesley with feelings and an attraction they’ve never really experienced before. I’m a huge fan of friends to lovers so I adored The Long Way Around and Quinn Anderson has quickly become one of my favorite writers with her engaging stories, sigh worthy romances, and her perfectly flawed but still likable characters.
I enjoyed both Sam and Wesley but I felt particularly connected to Sam since we share a lot of the same introverted tendencies. He’s nervous about attending his sister’s wedding because he’s been estranged from his parents for the past year after calling off his engagement last minute. But Wesley has Sam’s back and he knows that Sam would regret missing the wedding so he proposes the road trip idea. Wesley is really the perfect friend because he truly understands Sam and appreciates him for the way he is. Though Sam and Wesley have so much history as friends, I appreciated that Anderson didn’t rely on that prior history to short the reader on experiences. Instead I felt like they were learning each other all over again and we got to go along for the ride.
“Sam had fallen in love with Wesley over the course of thousands of days, hundreds of shared memories, and an immeasurable number of small but priceless moments.”
While Sam and Wesley may have thought the other was attractive, they’ve never acted on anything and really have just been friends. But as unexpected feelings develop they’re both thrown for a loop, left wondering what in the world is happening. But once these two give into their feelings they’re on fire and the chemistry was amazing! I think Sam and Wesley’s first kiss might have been one of the sexiest first kisses I’ve ever read purely because of the tension and anticipation. I loved every part of their relationship as it grew and changed, even the harder parts that barely survived Wesley’s hidden demons. The Long Way Around certainly had some heavier subject matter then what I’ve come to expect from Anderson but I loved the depth it added to the story and I hope to see more like it in the future.
ARC provided by NetGalley for honest review
5 out of 5 stars
Minor Spoiler (Highlight to see): Main character with an alcohol problem
A wrong turn could lead to Mr. Right.
Sam Cooper is the definition of an introvert: shy, bookish, and the sort to think a wild Friday night involves ordering takeout. He enjoys his quiet life, but after a bad breakup, he’s been yearning for a change of scenery. Luckily, his best friend and former college roommate has the solution.
Wesley Reed—a jokester and expert Sam-handler—proposes an epic road trip to a wedding across the country. They’re both between jobs and boyfriends. Why not hit the open road and make some memories?
Stuck in close quarters for the first time since their dorm days, they’re both surprised at the heat that springs up between them. As best friends, they’ve shared so much over the years, so why does sharing a hotel room—and occasionally a bed—make them want more? Chemistry this smoldering is hard to ignore, but there are road blocks to their romance. Wesley’s keeping a secret, and Sam can’t rely on Wesley to drag him out of his comfort zone forever. If they’re not careful, their relationship may take the ultimate wrong turn.
Published by Riptide Publishing on August 6, 2018