Book Review: Textual Connections by Becca Jackson

Textual Connections

Author: Becca Jackson
Series: Love In No Man’s Land, book 1
Publisher: Independent (January 16, 2023)
Kindle edition, 211 pages
Romance, Adult Contemporary M/M Romance
Goodreads

Summary

Mal

I thought I was good with my life in No Man’s Land. Truth be told, I was, until I messaged Bear.

What started as an online debate about coffee vs wine, has become something so much more, it doesn’t even matter that I don’t know his real name and have never seen his face. My daughter doesn’t agree.

She wants me to find someone “real” before she leaves for college, so when the neighbors hot brother rolls into town, she’s less than subtle about my single status.

Bobby is a free spirit, man in every town, according to his sister, but that’s not really him. He’s fun, adventurous, kind, and he’s a fantastic flirt, so when the similarities between Bear and Bobby start to align I can hardly believe my luck.

Can my online crush really be the guy next door?

Bear

I never wanted to come back to Nomanland, traveling the world is everything to me, but the money has almost run out and I’m in desperate need of a sponsor that doesn’t make me cringe.

My sister thinks I’m crazy for not wanting to settle down, and when I told her about chatting online with Mal she basically gave me the whole catfish creeper tv-special warning and begged me not to try to meet him for real.

Not that Mal would want to come to Nomanland. I can’t see what this small town has to offer anyone, that is until Michael takes it upon himself to show me the beauty of this town I’d chosen to forget.

Michael owns the local café, he’s a fan of puns, is an amazing dad and loves travel, though he’s never actually been anywhere… just like Mal.

I tell myself I must be crazy, because if Michael really is Mal, how long has he known? Was Meg right? Did I come back to Normanland just to get my heart broken, or could Mal really be the happy beginning I never knew I needed?

Review

Rating: 5 out of 5.

I seem to be reading a lot of M/M romances about older gentlemen lately… I wonder if this is a publishing trend, or if it just happens to be this type of book coming across my radar lately. Hmm…

Regardless! This is such a fun and flirty romance! I love the chemistry between Mal and Bear. I’m such a sucker for an online romance that results in a “love triangle” except little does the person know that the two people they’re torn about – the online one and the real life one – are the SAME person. *shiver* There’s just something SO excellent about it, and Becca Jackson does this trope so well in Textual Connections. The online chemistry between Bear and Mal is VERY hot, and the chemistry between Bobby and Michael IRL is more of a swoony sweetness – so what a bonus when it all starts coming together!

My favorite part of this story though was probably the extended cast of side characters in Michael’s friend group. I LOVED the “Crystal Queers” trivia team, and would absolutely love to go hang out and do trivia night with these fine folks. I’m really hoping future books in the series feature the people in this friend group – and come on, Lucas and Carter’s book had better be next!!

It looks like this is Becca Jackson’s debut novel, which – WOW. What a start to a writing career! This is a wonderful, soft, hot, low-angst romance, and I can’t wait to see what Becca Jackson comes out with next.

This is the first book in the Love in No Man’s Land series, and can be read as a standalone. That being said, I CANNOT WAIT for the rest of the Crystal Queers to get their own books!!

I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book. All opinions are unbiased and my own.

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