Rich, gay newlyweds put bigots and bad guys in their place in this “bromantic” adventure.
Tyler Conrad needs to marry by his 25th birthday if he wants to claim his inheritance, but he can’t rustle up a bride. His best friend, Glen Merriwether, proposes the answer: They’ll take each other’s hand in marriage. Glen and Tyler are both slightly homophobic (and extremely handsome) amateur hockey players who have only dated women, but their rapturous wedding-day kiss uncorks bottled-up passion. The Hollywood conceit kicks off a pageant of wish-fulfillment financed by Tyler’s $36 billion trust fund, featuring a cavernous Park Avenue penthouse, limos, fabulous fashions, the purchase of his-and-his NHL franchises and constant boasting about net worth. Even better than the luxury is the power—to overawe charities with generosity, breeze past snooty gate-keepers with a phone call, and turn the tables on right-wing homophobes with the news that Tyler, who apparently comes to own almost every company in the world, is their boss, landlord or principal advertiser. The novel’s countless revenge scenes are capped by a gothic showdown in which Tyler evicts his thunderous dad and shrieking stepmother from the family manse. After several chapters focused on glamour and gloating, a lightweight thriller plot gels around assassination attempts and the hijacking of a cruise ship; it furnishes the narrative with some nifty spec-ops set pieces, along with a hardened, muscular security detail for Glen and Tyler to banter with. Sanders stocks the story with eccentric—sometimes cartoonish—characters, giddy contrivances and plenty of racy repartee in the stripe of a screwball comedy. Also, determined to portray a feel-good gay relationship free of trauma and angst, he regales readers with scenes of Glen and Tyler nuzzling and cooing amid lavish décor. Unfortunately, their romance doesn’t generate much heat; Glen has little to do except play the adoring onlooker to Tyler, the smug, frat-boy mogul. Still, Sanders’ fluent, well-paced prose supplies enough lively action and glitzy scenery to keep readers entertained.
Colorful, wacky escapism.