Cole Riann's Reviews > The Hot Floor

The Hot Floor by Josephine Myles
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's review
Sep 25, 2012

it was amazing
bookshelves: awesome-covers, armchair-reviews, m-m-m-and-more, m-m-contemporary, m-m-bdsm-fetish, m-m-art
Read from September 22 to 23, 2012

Review posted at The Armchair Reader.

Josh is completely smitten with his downstair neighbors Rai and Evan. It doesn't help that every time he spends time with his best friend Denise (who lives one floor below the men) he can hear them having kinky, noisy sex that pounds the walls. He longs for a piece of what they have -- a great relationship, unspoken communication -- and the daily reminder of the two hot men becomes the focal point of his fantasies after a disappointing relationship history. To his surprise, when he befriends the two and gets to know them better, he can relate to both on difference levels. They become good friends until a rather hilarious accident forces Josh to temporarily live with the two men.

They quickly move on from friendship and find that they have an insanely strong sexual connection and spend the next few weeks exploring each other and the new way they relate to one another. Along the way, Josh finds he has growing feelings for the men, and waiting for them to kick him out of their bed and go back to their regular lives, all the while knowing that he'll be changed person when the other shoe finally drops, leaving him hopelessly in love with two men who already have a future without him.

I think that Josephine Myles made a very important choice with this story, whether it was purposeful or not. There is a lot of supply in the m/m market now, which means that what is different stands out. That leads to a lot of genre mashing and while that can work well for a story and certainly stands out, there is something to be said for character driven stories that really look at and develop one particular issue. In the case of m/m/m menage in particular, most of the ones I read these days aren't really about the relationship between the three men, at least not front and center. But The Hot Floor does focus on those issues in such a relationship that would crop up in the real world -- jealousy, prior history, and the different dynamics of trust among more than a two-person couple -- and that is why it worked so well for me.

Josh is an endearing character and though he doubts it at every turn, I could see why both Evan and Rai were attracted to him and could easily fall for him, even when it goes against their rules. He's completely unaware of what he offers in a relationship or friendship, consistently afraid to trust when anything but a definitive proposal keeps him feeling like the outsider in an already existing relationship. Past relationships as well as family history make it difficult for him to trust, especially to show others his true self. His blush becomes a bit of a trademark he does it so often, when just a thought of talking dirty makes him stammer over his words. The fact that everything he experiences with Evan and Rai is so new makes the experiences more meaningful, and I got the sense that it wasn't simply what he could offer their relationship that made him such a great third (and then more than that) but that they both offer something very special for Josh as well. The added security of being welcomed into an already existing relationship helped him focus on other things (like his trust issues).

The focus of the story is really on Josh's neuroses, in particular those issues of trust and his fear of opening up to another man. The great thing about him falling for Evan and Rai is that the arrangement starts out as friendship and then solely as fun sex. The "rules" the two have in place of not sleeping with a friend or neighbor give Josh structure and boundaries, even though they're eventually broken. I loved that we really get to see the lighter side of their lives, especially with Rai around, who constantly had me cracking up in laughter. It is important for there to be something that the "third" can bring to the relationship and I found that I rather liked the fact that even though Josh had things to bring to the table that made a menage relationship work, the original relationship between Rai and Evan was great and had no need of being "fixed". It wasn't a case of him "saving" their relationship, which when I thought about it, seems to be more often the case in menage.

I was surprised and delighted to see that the story didn't devolve into typical romance plot faults. I kept growing nervous about their faulty building, but was happy to see how the situation resolved. For the most part, however, I simply liked that the story spent time with the three of them, often happy and showing the lighter side of a beginning relationship without getting bogged down in what doesn't work and then fixing it. They simply work well together, and the difficulties involved in their relationship were internal and organic to the characters.

I can't wait to read this again. So far it is my favorite of this author's books, and it was a real delight to read. I can't wait to read what she publishes next!
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Reading Progress

20.0% "Man I'm really loving the dynamic between these three! Evan and Rai are so hot and funny" 4 comments

Comments (showing 1-21 of 21) (21 new)

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Hannah I caved and pre-ordered this. :-)

Cole Riann :) I liked it! it's super hot!!

ReviewerLarissa You lucky bastard!

Cole Riann ROFL! I'm sure you could get it for review too if you wanted ;)

ReviewerLarissa True, but I already pre-ordered it. Some books I don't want to review, but just enjoy for myself.

Cole Riann Yep, this one's good you'll like it!

ReviewerLarissa Yeah Yeah just a few more days!

Cole Riann Tomorrow! :D

Tiya Rosa Great review, Cole! I'm not into menage stories, but this got me interested.

Chris Tiya wrote: "Great review, Cole! I'm not into menage stories, but this got me interested."

I'm not, either, but this one worked for me. :)

message 11: by Cole (new) - rated it 5 stars

Cole Riann You should give it a try Tiya, this is one of the best m/m/m books I've ever read and it's like... good reads, honestly ;) It's not really angsty or anything, it just made me totally happy to read, warm and comforting and totally sexy!

MsMiz (Tina) I enjoy menage stores and this one really worked. The only negative I could find was...wait, don't want to spoil it;)

message 13: by Cole (new) - rated it 5 stars

Cole Riann put it in a spoiler tag!!! I wanna know!

MsMiz (Tina) You read it!!! (view spoiler)

I did really enjoy this book - really enjoyed it.

message 15: by Cole (new) - rated it 5 stars

Cole Riann ahh okay, yeah that would have been nice but I really didn't mind, it didn't feel lacking without it for me.

message 16: by E.M. (new) - added it

E.M. Lynley two great reviews for this and I'm going off to buy it now. Thanks!

message 17: by Cole (new) - rated it 5 stars

Cole Riann Yay! I hope you like it :) I loved it

Stephanie I loved this book. And Cole, your review was soooooooooo spot on. I wish I could write such a beautiful, well-thought out review such as yours, but I'm so wrapped up in my emotions afterwards, that I can't think of anything to say other than "I loved it!"

message 19: by Cole (new) - rated it 5 stars

Cole Riann Aw thank you Stephanie! I had worried that my review was muddled a bit because my feelings were the same as yours when I finished and I really loved it, so I'm glad that you thought I was coherent :) And I'm glad you liked the book so much!

Alexandra Great review!

message 21: by Cole (new) - rated it 5 stars

Cole Riann Thanks!!

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