Review: Unconventional by Isabel Love (2017)

Heat Factor: The house is on fire

Character Chemistry: They really manage to be totally into each other while also playing with other partners

Plot: Two people who swore never to be in a relationship after trauma fall into a relationship

Overall: This book was really excellent…but after a book that explored so much about having a different kind of successful relationship, the ending, while totally understandable, did not feel very fresh, which bummed me out a little bit

If you’re looking for a romance in which the couple engages in monogamish threesomes and end up in a no-marriage, no-kids HEA…I think this book will probably be what you’re looking for. 

This book was on a list I decided to read through (this one, if you’re interested), and I happened to pick it up at a time that I was also looking for books about people who have HEAs and are not traditionally monogamous. So that was a score. And it was totally hot, and the relationship was really sweet—they both come from unsupportive families and are 100% there for each other when needed, which really cemented the relationship before they ever agreed to be in a relationship. 

Quinn is an older, divorced painter, and Charlie is a younger, bachelor commercial photographer. They know each other because their respective best friends are in a relationship, and they like to hook up. This is fine, because both are completely not interested in having a relationship, and they’re both interested in great sex. And they don’t end up in a relationship because one starts feeling jealous when the other looks like they’re going to hook up. 

So far, so good. 

Things get going with the story when they’re out in a group and Quinn’s hookup for the evening falls through, but she stumbles on Charlie getting busy with the woman she encouraged him to hook up with for the evening. When they discover that they both like to watch, that the idea makes them aroused more than jealous, their relationship starts moving in a direction that results in a lot more emotional intimacy, until they’re spending every night together and most of their days, too. It clicks along just right, and the emotional stakes feel right, too.

I will say that the primary…conflict? problem?…centered on reproduction and infertility (with discussion of abortion that happened before the book starts). If that’s a no-go for you, then don’t read this book. I totally understood why the author made the choices she did because of the way the reveal impacted the protagonists…but I also have to say, I’d love to see a little bit more nuance surrounding discussions of infertility in romance.

Bonus points: The hero has a peen piercing. 

Buy Now: Amazon

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