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The Tragedy of Felix and Jake

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From New York Times bestselling author, J. Daniels, comes an all-new standalone forbidden romance.
They say the best way to get over someone is to get under someone else.
They say the best way to stay sober is to love yourself.

I’m great at making bad decisions.
Addict? Check. Poor impulse control? Check. Obsessed with the guy I’m sponsoring? Check Check Check.
There is no one worse for me to want in my bed than Jake Tully. He’s hot and grumpy and literally a terrible idea. Terrible. Worse, no one has ever made me feel the way he does — valued. But here I am - thinking about him again.

Falling for my sponsor is not my worst idea yet, but it’s damn close.
Felix Fields is everything good. He’s thoughtful and kind. I can’t help but think about every bad thing we could do between these sheets.
But we can’t be together. I’m not willing to risk my recovery for anyone – even if he might be perfect for me.

Finding a love like this is nothing short of a tragedy.

**Author's Note: This book ends in a Happily Ever After, but getting there isn't easy.

431 pages, Kindle Edition

First published February 2, 2023

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About the author

J. Daniels

21 books7,917 followers
J. Daniels is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of the Alabama Summer, Dirty Deeds and Sweet Addiction series, as well as her forbidden MM romance: The Tragedy of Felix and Jake.

Best known for her sexy, small-town romances, her debut novel, Sweet Addiction, was first published in 2014 and went on to become an international bestseller. Since then, she has published more than fifteen novels, including the Dirty Deeds series with Forever Romance.

Daniels grew up in Baltimore and currently lives in Maryland with her husband and three kids. A former full-time Radiologic Technologist, she began writing romance after college and quickly discovered a passion for it. You'll still catch her in scrubs every now and then, but most of her time is spent writing these days—a career she is eternally grateful for.

Always an avid reader, Daniels enjoys books of all kinds, but favors Romance (of course) and Fantasy. She loves hiking, traveling, going to the mountains for the weekend, and spending time with her family.

Follow her on Bookbub! http://bit.ly/jdaniels_bookbub

FREE BOOK : https://BookHip.com/VFJVAVX

To receive an email when she releases a new book, sign up for her newsletter! http://bit.ly/jdaniels_newsletter


CONTACT: jessica@authorjdaniels.com

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Displaying 1 - 30 of 217 reviews
Profile Image for aleksandra.
409 reviews286 followers
March 6, 2023

“You’re my favorite person in the world. Nothing’s going to change that, okay?”

"I want to matter to someone every day forever. And I want that someone to be Jake."

“Because I’ve waited my whole life for you. And for this. Us.” I squeeze his hands. “You’re my fucking family, Jake, and we’ll fight this. Together.”

“You’re my fucking soulmate, Felix, and I don’t even believe in that shit.”

I literally found out about J.Daniels two days before this book was about to be released and I'm so glad I stumbled upon her on IG because this book definitely convinced me to read more of her work. Starting with the basics - the cover is stunning because one, there is no shirtless man on it, and two, if you read the book you will understand its meaning. I love that the chapters weren't too long and each one had a title, I love when chapters have titles. The book was quite long, but I think it was necessary because a lot of heavy topics were covered, be sure to check the trigger warnings.

We have dual points of view, from Felix's and Jake's side. They're both drug addicts trying to overcome their addictions, but Jake's case is worst, so after meeting Felix, they decide on a sponsor-"client" relationship, which as you can guess doesn't go their way as they both start to like each other. Their romantic relationship is evolving pretty fast, but they obviously have to overcome a lot of hardships to finally be together at the end. Dont worry its a HEA ending, but I almost got a heart attack at the end (but as I said dont worry its a HEA, I can only read happy endings. I need some happines in my life).

Main characters really made me fall for them, becuse they were both amazing, even though they were both struggling. I just wanted to hug them so much when I read what they went through. Grumpy and sunshipe (age-gap too) trope was made amazing, becuse we have Felix- the cuttest, caring, cat owning, tatto artist (he also has a lot of tatoos so *swoon*) with the biggest heart and Jake- trying to figure out his life after breaking his sobriety ex Marine.

Their relationship was really cute and I have a lot of annotations, because their messages, flirting, the way they teased and obsessed over each other, THE SMUT, Felix jelousy over his cat, Felix finally accepting his hair because of Jake, Felix having planned their both future (kids, house and all), both of them having folders on their phones dedicated for the screenshots of their conversations and photos and soo many another moments just made me annotate more and more.

The plot about Jake and his brother (CJ) made me cry at the end, becuse they both went through a lot and the last chapters just made me tear for them.

Why the 4 star rating then? Well.. I didnt like the writing style at some moments and I hated the Tinder plot (which was really unimportant to be honest, and while well explained and making the story more realistic was just unnecessary). But its just me opinion.

The ending and the message in the book was beautiful, realistic and made me so happy. If the author decides to write a novella for them, I'll be first in line.
Profile Image for Sarah/DragonflyReads.
697 reviews160 followers
February 2, 2023
Felix is the best friend you never knew you needed in your life. Jake is the grumpy guy you need to watch succeed. Together their story is filled with amazing highs and tragic lows.

J. Daniels highly anticipated return is nothing short of tragically wonderful.

*Even better the second time around.
Profile Image for Cyndi.
544 reviews28 followers
May 6, 2023
This was…not what I expected. I’ll admit, I unfairly judge all romances involving drug/alcohol addiction against Counting Daisies, which is a hard act to follow in my opinion. And of all the plot devices used in romance, addiction is the one that makes me feel the most uncomfortable. I don’t mean books written with characters who struggle with addiction. I mean books like this, where addiction is the primary focus of the narrative. It reminds me of the manic pixie dream girl movies from the 90’s, where mental health disorders were romanticized. There’s representation and then there’s exploitation. To me, this book veered closer to the exploitative side of things.

I’ll start with the sponsor/sponsee meet cute. This is the “forbidden” aspect of the story. Those quotation marks are there for a reason. It’s not forbidden. It’s frowned upon. It’s a horrible idea. It’s potentially harmful. It can be seen as an abuse of power. But it’s not forbidden. My biggest problem with it in this book was that Felix was attracted to Jake BEFORE he offered to sponsor him. Hello, what now? I’ve read other books where the close knit relationship between a sponsor and sponsee led to attraction/romantic feelings, but straight out of the gate and you still asked to sponsor him? If you’re trying to get in the guys pants, just try to get in his pants. Don’t take an active role in his sobriety. I kept trying to wrap my head around this self imposed “forbidden” dynamic between them and eventually gave up. Also, Felix only had a little over a year of sobriety under his belt. Jake had been sober for 7 years before he relapsed. So not only was the sponser/sponsee situation unnecessary, it made zero sense. The problem could have been as simple as two people with a history of addiction potentially being bad for each other but trying to make it work anyway.

Now for the story. This should have been called A Series of Unfortunate Events (Addiction Version). It wasn’t a story about two people dealing with their addictions as they made their way through every day life. This was a story about two people on an obstacle course towards an inevitable finish line. I’m unsure of the timeline, but I’m pretty sure most of this book took place within one week, during which Jake and Felix take multiple hits that challenge their sobriety. I mean, one thing after another. It was so contrived that I could almost picture the bullet points on the author’s outline. I loved the moments when Jake and Felix were alone together without all of the external drama. The dialogue and text messages between them were the highlights of this entire book. They were cute and funny and snarky. Felix was adorable and made Jake palatable enough for me to root for the two of them. Unfortunately, everything else felt forced and predictable.

I had some other niggles too. First, Jake’s military background served no purpose and made me wonder if a person with a history of substance abuse would even be eligible to serve. A quick Google search told me it was possible, but not probable, especially since Jake had been to rehab. Second, I don’t think a police officer has enough clout to get a person’s phone number switched to a new phone without that person being there. I could be wrong, but I hope I’m not because that would be pretty messed up. Third, can we stop writing gay guys who think vaginas are gross? It’s so insulting. I know there are people who feel that way, but the romance reader demographic is chock full of vaginas and some people already feel bad enough about that part of their anatomy without fictional characters saying “ew” in reference to it. Fourth, this may be a standalone novel, but it is very much a part of this author’s Alabama Summer series. It was obvious that most of the side characters had their own books and their scenes gave me that feeling of not understanding the punchline to an inside joke because I wasn’t there. Fifth, Sixth, spontaneous anal sex in the shower with no lube, no prep and no protection (and no conversation regarding protection until later). Mind you, I don’t think we were ever supposed to believe these two were good at making decisions.

Here’s what sucks - I wanted to like this book so much because I truly loved Felix and wanted him to be happy and healthy and loved and cuddled. This was one of those reading situations where I connected to the characters (even though I never truly warmed to Jake), but not their story. I did think there was a lot of course correction at the end, which made me feel better about the book as a whole, but there was too much I’d have to overlook to feel anything other than okay about it. Even though I enjoyed the writing style and the dialogue, I think I’ll pass if this author decides to write another MM romance in the future.
Profile Image for Dani.
392 reviews23 followers
March 30, 2023
Loved this so much. Felix and Jake made my heart hurt.
Profile Image for Sheena.
306 reviews3 followers
February 23, 2023
5/5 stars

This has to one of my favorite books I have read so far in the year. I laughed, cried (a lot) and smiled throughout it.

Felix and Jake’s story was definitely difficult, but so fulfilling. The ending was realistic, which I loved. Nothing was sugar coated, it was was real. I got to the epilogue and just cried. I could just keep reading about them.
Profile Image for Debra.
2,002 reviews231 followers
March 21, 2023
Another new-to-me author and another winner. The story was intense and sweet and full of bad decision-making. I adored both MCs. This is a spin-off from one of the author's m/f series (which I haven't read and didn't need to) and there are some secondary characters appearing here, including Jake's brother and his friend group. And yes, there is a HEA so not really a tragedy.
Profile Image for Claire (clairesneverlandofbooks).
352 reviews15 followers
March 7, 2023
“We’d be so good together. I just know we would.”
I close my eyes as this ache in my chest burns and burns, and if life doesn’t stop fucking me soon, I’m going to lose my mind.
“Everything is stacked against us,” I say. “We’d be a tragedy, Felix. This wouldn’t work.”
His smile is confusing.
“You don’t agree?” I ask, and how fucked up is it that I actually hope he doesn’t.
“No. I agree.” He steps closer and presses one (last) kiss to my mouth. “I just know that wouldn’t stop me.”

Jessica has done it yet again.
Did I laugh? Yes.
Did I cry? Also yes.

You know going in by the title of this book it’s gonna be a harder read. And I was ready for it to pull in my heartstrings and it did all of that.

We’ve been waiting for a long time for Jake’s story and I’m so glad we finally got it.
Profile Image for Jamie.
615 reviews34 followers
March 27, 2023
Let me start by saying there were parts of this book I absolutely loved but a few things really threw me off.

Using bitch and pussy as insults needs to stop. Just because people use these IRL doesn’t mean we need to continue that destructive speech in books. It’s archaic and wildly misogynistic.

There is also a bathroom scene at the end that has an older man involved that was not only completely unnecessary but distracted from a very emotional situation. It felt so gross.

I really hate when an author packages a book as a stand-alone and then writes chapters and scenes about all these characters from other books making you feel lost and like you’re missing something if you’ve not read them - IT IS NOT A STAND-ALONE when they do this.

Ok ok. Now good stuff - I love how quirky the writing is. It was hilarious and emotional. I felt like I really got to know Felix and Jake. And I loved them both so much. They were raw and vulnerable but also so brave. Their addictions did have so much control over them but I could feel how much they hated it and just wanted to live.

Their struggles absolutely tore me to pieces. I definitely cried. My heart broke for them, as well as Jake’s brother, CJ. I don’t think the reality of addiction was ever glossed over or minimized. Their challenges were addressed throughout the book.

Felix was the most beautiful soul. He just so desperately wanted to be loved. He had no one. And while Jake had family, it just couldn’t fill the void. The way these two were compelled to be just be around each other was intoxicating. I loved it so much. I also loved how they both staked their claim on each other!

This was a slow burn but once it hit, these two were torrid fire!! So much passion that it overwhelmed them both. And rightfully so. I also loved how this book didn’t put them in situations where their sobriety was in danger because of each other. It was always outside forces.
Profile Image for Beth C..
609 reviews56 followers
January 16, 2023
A beautiful, heart-wrenching return from NYT best seller (and all-time fave) J. Daniels. With her signature humor adding levity to the story of two men bent to the point of nearly broken, Daniels shows that sometimes the very thing we need is also the the very thing we shouldn't want. By turns heart-breaking, life-affirming, and sexy as all get out, The Tragedy of Felix and Jake is a must-read that you'll want a box of tissues on hand to survive. You'll love it, even if it breaks you before it's over.
Profile Image for Kirsten.
1,081 reviews44 followers
February 26, 2023
What’s funnier than
addiction? I can’t even—
Childish, sexist, dumb.
Profile Image for Lover of Romance.
2,843 reviews817 followers
March 10, 2023
The Tragedy of Felix and Jake is a standalone novel and the newest release of J. Daniels. J.Daniels hasn't been writing for a few years, as she had a baby during covid and suffered from some postpartum issues. But she came back with a winner of a romance! I can't tell you how much I embraced this book and it just had my emotions all over the place. Its not going to be an easy read, so be aware of what you are getting into with this one. I really admired how well this author handled her first MM romance but also in the way that she tackled addiction recovery because it felt so real and this couple will always have my heart.

The Tragedy of Felix and Jake is about two young men who meet at a meeting, where a solid friendship forms between them instantly. But for Felix, who is gay, he wants Jake so badly. Jake however, is bi sexual and doesn't recognize the signs of attraction at first, and he is more nervous when it comes to relationships. But Felix is instantly ALL in for Jake and seeing his devotion to Jake was so precious. But very quickly these two embrace what they have for each other while also being each other's support on their addiction recovery journey's.

What is so precious about this book is the relationship building aspects of the relationship. I loved how well done this author conveys the solid mix of spice, emotional connection and trauma healing within this one here. I was so hooked into this story and I couldn't put it down. I have only read J.Daniels in Audio, so to physically read one of her books was such a five star experience. I definitely need to start going through her backlist, that is for sure.

The romance that develops between these two is so captivating and I just wanted to see them get to their HEA but its a journey and it takes time but the way in which our characters are so understanding and patient with each other and just FIGHT for one another was beautiful and heartwarming. This is a story that will stay with you for quite a long while and I am so excited to see what this author will deliver in the future.
Profile Image for Alba and Her Secrets..♥.
808 reviews1,017 followers
February 11, 2023
4 'We'll be okay' Stars!

I am always happy to see an author coming back to the romance world and I was incredibly excited when J. Daniels announced she was releasing a new book about Jake Tully. It's been a while since my last MM romance and I was all over the idea of this one. And as the title says it's not all hearts and flowers for Jake and Felix, their stories are complicated, their connection is a bit taboo and their story is full of difficult moments.

However, this novel also is all about recovery, about banter and about crazy hot chemistry! These two boys will definitely give you one hell of a ride but you'll thoroughly enjoy it, I can assure you! So, if you haven't read The Tragedy of Felix and Jake yet, it released just two weeks ago. Go and check it out!
Profile Image for Carol (§CoverLoverGirl§).
332 reviews52 followers
March 27, 2023
The Tragedy of Felix and Jake

Oh boy, J. Daniels sure knows how to tap into all the emotions in their readers. I still feel ‘too raw’ to write many words to describe this book.

Jake is a Drug Addict, he’s been in rehab and survived and became a Marine. Then his girlfriend wrote him a ‘Dear John’ letter, even admitting that she was now with someone else, a neighbour of hers.

That’s all it took to send him spiralling backwards and down, down down into the ‘pits of hell’ again. Stealing his fellow soldiers medications, wrecking their barracks room, and then beating him up because he objected to the mess.

He’s immediately dishonourably discharged with nowhere to go. So like always, crying his eyes out, he calls CJ, his older brother, “Help Me”. “OK, I’m on my way”. CJ is a cop and he is 6 hours drive away. Still, he gets there, like always and always. Just like good family always do.

A while later, Jake is staying with CJ and his wife Riley, in Ruxton, where they live and work. Like he promised them, he’s attending support meetings, though not with great enthusiasm. After usual introductions he notices a young guy wearing a beanie with dark curls peaking out, he immediately smiles at Jake when their eyes meet.

Outside, after the Meeting finishes, Felix invites Jake for a coffee and donuts, and more donuts. Felix has been sober for a while and he has a Mentor, an older man, Dean.

Felix offers himself as a Mentor to Jake, but Dean his Mentor, tells him that is not allowed or advisable. But Felix becomes Jake’s lifeline and best friend and Jake becomes someone who Felix desperately needs in his life. Someone who cares about him and shows him he is worth something, who makes him feel good about himself.

He was close to his mother but she died some years ago. His father, like Felix, is a drug addict, a drunk and a criminal, stealing and dealing to fund his habits. He has disappeared for months at a time leaving Felix, a young schoolboy to fend for himself. This time he’s been gone for a year, leaving Felix in the house his mother left to him when she died.

Felix is a gay man, out and proud and his attraction to Jake is growing. Jake has never been ‘with a man’, but his feelings when around Felix is very much on his mind. Jake eventually realises he must be bisexual.

And there you have it, a beautiful growing love story between Felix and Jake, two lost souls, finding each other, becoming everything to each other, until life in its sometimes cruel way, interferes.

Can they beat their own demons? Can Felix keep his father from destroying the life he is trying to now live without him? Will Jake’s brother forgive him and keep helping him stay free from drugs?


TW, drug addiction is the main topic of this story with both MC’s trying to overcome their habit, deal with their failings, abusive parent who is also an addict and loss of baby through miscarriage. If these are issues that are difficult for you, find a different story to read.

I cried for these two guys, especially Felix, he so deserves a good life. I fell in love with him right from the get go, with Jake it took a bit longer.

Towards the end I nearly threw my iPad against the wall, just for a minute.

Author J. Daniels you are a very naughty 👿 but you do write a good story which must have taken a lot of hard research on your part. I’ll read some more of your work.
Profile Image for Zizie.
670 reviews21 followers
February 19, 2023
Wow this amazing, heartwarming, witty & gut wrenching book. Just finished riding this roller coaster of emotions. I smiled, I swooned, I chuckled, I burst into uncontrollable laughter, I frowned, I got mad and then I cried and cried and cried….then I was smiling again and laughed a little bit and cried a bit more and then I finished the Tragedy of Felix and Jake with a huge smile & a contented sigh even though my vision was blurry and my cheeks were wet.

Now I want a donut with rainbow sprinkles.
I want lunch buddies like Hector and Miguel.
I want an apple pie freshly baked by Jake.
I want a beanie crocheted by Felix
But most of all I want to thank J. Daniels for creating Felix and Jake who I want to hug and squeeze and cheer them on through their trials and tribulations.
Profile Image for Kristen Tarkington.
36 reviews1 follower
February 2, 2023
10/10 👏🏻👏🏻

This is not a spoiler review. This is a ‘you’re going to laugh, you’re going to cry, you’re going to get mad and you’re going to swoon’ so hard review!! This book was everything! It was hard and sweet and beautiful! I loved it so much!
Profile Image for J. Daniels.
Author 21 books7,917 followers
Currently reading
February 3, 2023
What to expect from this book:
💔 Grumpy/Sunshine Heroes
💔 A Sobriety Meet/Cute
💔 Sizzling Sexual Tension
💔 Adorable Text Messages
💔 OMG OH NO WTF Moments
💔 Found Family
💔 A Moody Cat
💔 Boy on Boy Cuddles
💔 A Happily Ever After

Thank you so much for reading <3
Profile Image for Karen.
1,342 reviews92 followers
February 5, 2023
I was a bag of nerves reading this book. So scared.

Not that it’s a particularly scary book, I was just so worried for both Jake and Felix. I absolutely loved them both.

Felix is like a kid wound tight and high on life and sugar. I wanted him to stay clean so badly. I felt like Jake was always one step away from self destruction and the fact that the title of the book has the word tragedy in it, meant I was second guessing what the tragedy was going to be.

I feel strung out and in need of a glass of wine and a cuddle.
Profile Image for Krysta (spicy.spine.breaker).
525 reviews28 followers
March 12, 2023
Where will you be in 4 years?

Oh my lort this was amazing.

<3 Jake+Felix - sensational. Absolute Soulmates in every sense.
- Big Bro CJ (omg still sobbing)+ sis IL- amazing family unit.
- Bella - the ultimate bitch feline. Love her.

I am a mushy pile of swoony emotional soup 12 hours after finishing this book. Felix deserves the whole world. The whole UNIVERSE. Jake too by association. Period. FRTC.
Profile Image for Shelba.
1,999 reviews42 followers
March 18, 2023
DNF @ 4%.

The writing comes off very juvenile. I just don’t really expect the heavy themes of this book to be handled well when this reads like some dude-bro comedy.
Profile Image for misz lei.
169 reviews14 followers
May 20, 2023
I was so scared this one will have that pathetic break up scene “i have to go and heal myself don’t wait for me coz I’m not selfish!” kinda shit I’m so glad the author took a different root!

5 felix is here dick tattoo🤣 stars!

This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
Profile Image for Megan ~The Never Ending Book Basket.
1,947 reviews77 followers
February 19, 2023
I need to start this book review by letting you know right off the bat that my words will not do this book or Felix and Jake the justice that they deserve. My words will not be enough to capture what this author so beautifully and deeply and emotionally created in this book, and in their story. My words will not even scratch the surface of the literal amazingness. that was this book and this love story. My words will never be enough to fully encapsulate what this author gives you with her characters.

My words will never be enough to capture what this author gives you with these two utterly amazing men, but I am going to do my damn best to try like hell to give you some of that so that you understand that you need this book in your life this very second.

J. Daniels has been one of my favorite authors for almost 8 years now. Ever since I read her first book, sweet addiction, I have been sold. She has an author that I have read every word of, an author that I go back to Again and Again for rereading, and an author, who I can always count on to give me an incredible, a heart touching, and and just fantastic story. I have loved every single one of her books. They’ve all been five star reads for me. They have owned me, they have made me laugh, they have made me swoon, they have just given me life while reading them.

But this book, this book was more. so much more. So much glorious more. That’s not to say that I haven’t loved her other books just as much as this one, but there is just something so damn special about this book. There’s just something so beyond right and incredible and deep and true about Jake and Felix and everything they share together.

Those two are magic. Those two are perfection. Those two are the personification of second chances at life and love and family. Those two are dynamic. Those two are funny as hell. Those two are literal amazingness. Those two are love. Those two are every insurmountable hurdle and every happily ever after combined. Those two are everything.

To say, I loved this book, and that I loved, Jake and Felix is putting it too mildly. I loved every single thing about them, and their story together. I loved that it wasn’t always easy for them. I loved that. It was so raw and vulnerable and emotional. I loved that it stole every piece of my heart and soul through every single word of what I got with them. I loved that those two just saw each other. They saw each other‘s quirks and personalities and flaws and they loved each other more because of them. I loved that these two had the odds stacked against them, but that they were willing to fight like hell because they knew that they were meant to be.

They knew that they were meant to find their way. They knew that they were meant to make it together. They knew that they were meant to be healthy and to do it all and to find their way. And just getting to be in the thick of it and in the heart of that fight, and that desire, and that longing and that unadulterated connection was nothing short of everything. It was some thing that truly encapsulated everything with them and it made for a reading experience, and a book and two men that I will love with my whole heart for the rest of time.

I honestly treasured every single second of what I got with them in this book, and in their story. Even in those moments where they struggled, and even in those moments when they didn’t know if they would make it, I loved them, and I loved everything I experience with them because I felt and lived in breathe at all. I took it all in, I experienced it in the most authentic way, through this author‘s words, and I just loved these two men through it all. This author just allows you to love them, to root for them, to understand them , on the deepest of levels in the most real way, and she shows you that if there are two people on this planet, who are meant to be, and meant to find their way, it is Jake and Felix.

I am not an addict, and I do not have anyone in my life who is an addict, but I have to say that this author does the most exceptional job of allowing you to have an understanding of what it’s like to be an addict, to love an addict, and to want healing for an addict. This story definitely has its fair share of moments that will hurt your heart and that will show these characters in some not so easy moments, but it will also show you, the depths of their hearts, the hope that they have, and the healing journey that they are fighting like hell to go on together. This book will show you that Jake and Felix do have their times in the dark, there are times when all feels lost, but that they also have so many moments of incredible light, so many moments of beautiful love, and so many moments of true and heartfelt connection, ready to pull them through just about anything.

I honestly just feel honored that I had the chance to experience the two of them and their story together. Those two owned my heart fiercely and I’m pretty sure they always well because they’re just so damn special. They are just so them, and they’re so right. They’re willing to fight like hell. When it really matters, they’re willing to admit when they need help, and they’re always ready to push for more and the love of what could be. And really, I’m just damn proud of them. I know that sounds crazy to say that about two fictional characters, but it’s true. I am so damn proud of them.

And what they allow you to get with them in this book, and I know that the moment you get in there with them, you will feel the same. Because they are worth it. Their love is worth it. The possibilities of them are beyond worth it. And every part of them and who they are, and who they hope to be on their own, and together is worth it.

I really cannot explain in the right amount of words, what it was like to read, and experience this story, and what I got with these characters. They truly left their hearts and their very souls on the pages of this book and it was everything. The emotional connection I felt to them, the level of love I felt and still feel for them right now, (and always will) and just every single thing I got with them along the way, and this book was nothing short of perfection. It was always them. It was messy and complicated and for bidden but it was them. It was magic. It was love personified. It was so much personality and banter and more fun and craziness. than you can shake a stick at.

And it was them. It was them in the best way, and simply put, I will never be able to fully capture the literal perfection that are Jake and Felix.

They might not be perfect, and their journey to one another, might not be perfect, and their story definitely might not be perfect with everything they go through, but they are perfect. They are perfect, because it is obvious from that very first moment that they are meant to be. And the way they fight for that chance, the way they believe in that chance, and in one another, even in the hardest of moments, and the way that they do everything in their power, to find their way to be, is perfection. The way they see through the walls and the barriers and the flaws and the what could be’s to the core of one another and the true goodness they have to offer each other and the world around them, is perfection. The way that they just see the goodness and all the possibilities and hopes for that future, is perfection.

They. Are. Perfection.

This is one of the best books I’ve read this year and it is definitely going to be one of my favorite books ever. The level of connection I feel with these two men, the way I love them with my whole heart, and the way that they just mean so much to me is something that I will truly treasure for the rest of time. Jake and Felix are my two newest fictional husbands, and they will always own a part of my heart. Always.

There are books you read that you connect with on a completely different level, and this is one of those books for me. This author did these characters right. She brought them to a place that was more than anything I could’ve imagined, and that place was everything they needed and more. She threw her words, allowed me to wholeheartedly. love her characters, to understand them, to get them and root for them, and just love them, and it was the absolute best. It was absolutely everything.

I really cannot say that enough.

This author gave me more than I could ever have asked for in this book. She allowed me to feel everything with these characters. I laughed with them. I fell in love with them. I cried with them. I broke with them. I basked in the lightness with them and fell into that darkness with them too. I’ve believed in them. I fought for them. I got it all with them. That is a true testament to what she creates as an author that I felt every bit of that and I just loved it. I loved it so damn much and it is just one of the many things that I will never forget about reading and experiencing this book.

If you are a fan of this author, you will love this book. If you’ve never read a book by this author, I promise such a love this book. It is deep and raw and emotional and breathtaking and unforgettable. It is funny as hell at times, and sexy and spicy and incredible. It is emotional and real and full of incredible characters that you will love. It is a love story that blooms from what seems impossible, but become so much more. And that more is everything. That more is beautiful. That more is exactly what these characters need. And you will just treasure every single second of what you get with them in this book.

I promise you that.

Jake and Felix will definitely take you on a hell of a ride in their story, but I promise you that it’s worth it. They are worth it. Their love and their journey and their fight is worth it. They may have started as a tragedy, but I promise you that they end in triumph, and you will want to be there with them when they do. Because those two? Those two are everything and then some. They are magic, they are soulmates, and they are the actual best. In that moment, when they finally get to that place, they’ve always been meant to be, and have always deserved to have, that will be a moment that you will want to spend the rest of your days in.

Trust me on that.

It’s in that moment that you will realize once again, that Jake and Felix are the absolute best, that they gave you it all, and that your heart is right there with theirs celebrating, and basking in that moment. And it’s in that moment, along with every other incredible moment of this book that J. Daniels creates, that you will know that this is one of the most unforgettable and emotional and amazing love stories you’ve ever had the chance to experience.

And it doesn’t get better than that. At all.
383 reviews2 followers
February 4, 2023
Wow. Best book I've read so far this year. Hard to read in parts.

Emotional, angsty, beautiful and very realistic.

Special shout out to Miguel and Hector - I loved those guys.
Profile Image for AJ.
2,870 reviews931 followers
March 9, 2023
“We’ll be okay”

5 stars

Oh wow, where to begin with this review. I have so many feelings about this book. It’s so funny, so emotional, and so heartwrenching, and I feel like I’ve been on a bit of a rollercoaster, but wow, what a beautiful read! A dramatic and forbidden(ish) m/m romance between two addicts who long to be together when everyone is telling them they can’t be, this is a story about the power of love – love for your family, for your partner, and for yourself. It sucked me in and didn’t let go, and I absolutely loved it!

Firstly, don’t let the title scare you. Yes, this is an emotional read, with heavy subject matter, but the majority of it is actually quite light-hearted, with lots of moments that made me laugh and smile. This book is a complete standalone, but it does have a fun tie-in to the Alabama Summer series. Jake is the younger brother of CJ (from What I Need), and we get to see some of the Alabama crew as side characters, which is fun.

Jake is a recovering addict who suffers a relapse, with devastating consequences. He’s pretty much lost everything, but his big brother CJ is there for him, quickly setting him up in his spare room, and getting him back into regular meetings and back on the road to recovery again. It’s at one of his meetings that Jake meets Felix. A fellow recovering addict, Felix reaches out to Jake and they click immediately. Though Felix is the perky, quirky sunshine to Jake’s grumpy broodiness, they form a connection, understanding each other in a way that others in their lives don’t, and Felix becomes Jake’s sponsor. The two lonely men become close friends, but there’s attraction there as well, but just when Jake has a glimmer of the chance of something meaningful in his life, they’re both told that new relationships are not recommended upon while you’re in recovery.

Felix has no idea how angry I was reading those guidelines the other night. It’s like someone saying “Yeah. You’re doing a great job with your sobriety and everything, but fuck you for wanting someone after messing up so badly. For thinking you deserve someone. You’re still too much of a loser and we know you’ll screw it up. Stay alone and sober, prick.”

But Felix is fiercely determined, and he doesn’t let guidelines stand in the way of his flirtatious nature, letting Jake know in no uncertain terms that he wants to try for more.

“We’d be so good together. I just know we would.”
I close my eyes as this ache in my chest burns and
burns, and if life doesn’t stop fucking me soon, I’m going to lose my mind.
“Everything is stacked against us,” I say. “We’d be a tragedy, Felix. This wouldn’t work.”
His smile is confusing.
“You don’t agree?” I ask, and how fucked up is it that I actually
hope he doesn’t.
“No. I agree.” He steps closer and presses one (last) kiss to my mouth. “I just know that wouldn’t stop me.

Felix made me laugh so many times! His cheery disposition is so incredible when you look at his situation, his past, and the sheer tragedy of his life. He’s funny and flirty, and so full of love for everybody in his life, and I just adored him.

“I love you so much, it’s sick.” I throw my arms around him, squeeze for a solid second, and then release. “What a great first hug.”
“We really didn’t hug. I just stood here.”
“I felt the embrace of your body.”
“Never say that again.”
“It sounded sexual. I hear it now.”
“I’m leaving,” he says as he gives me his back.

But in the midst of the laughs, we get to know these boys on a deep level, and my heart ached for them, for all they have been through, and for the love and sense of belonging that they both so desperately want.

I’ve lived so long without anyone giving a shit or caring about me, and I’m sure I could live longer without it, but I don’t want to.
I want to matter to someone every day
And I want that someone to be Jake.

Their need for each other becomes impossible to resist, and against the ‘guidelines’, and the advice of everybody in their lives, they give in to their attraction and fall hard and fast for each other. It’s fun, playful, intense and emotional, and it’s so damn sexy! They’re open with each other about everything, they talk about their journeys, their struggles, and their recovery, and they support and encourage each other through the ups and downs they experience, and God, I love their dynamic!

“I don’t think you’re nothing special or just another dick that gets me hard. I’ve never thought that about you. And I’d be a shitty boyfriend if I did. In fact, I will beat the fuck out of you if you ever let someone treat you like that.”
He blinks, letting his mouth fall open.
“That was actually really romantic, Jake. In like, a fucked-up way. But still. My heart
totally liked that.”

And the romance! OMG, what a beautiful, beautiful love story! The love that Jake and Felix have for each other is all-consuming, and I feel like I lived it with them. I love that they found each other, I love that they gave into it all so easily, and I love that they found something so incredible together.

“You’re my fucking soulmate, Felix, and I don’t even believe in that shit.”

But their recovery is a delicate thing, and though they do find each other, they’re still struggling with their demons and wrestling with their addictions, and you can feel how much they hate it. It broke my heart, and as we follow them through the highs and lows, oh, I ached for them both! Emotions run high, and it’s dramatic and intense, and at one point I read with tears streaming down my face at the unfairness of it all. But wow, what a journey we go on with these two men.

“I’ve waited my whole life for you. And for this. Us.” I squeeze his hands. “You’re my fucking family, Jake, and we’ll fight this. Together.”

There is an epilogue which finishes off the story beautifully, and I finished this book feeling satisfied and so happy for the happy ending the Jake and Felix fought so hard for.

This is a really beautiful read. I loved it so much.

5 stars.

An Advanced Review Copy was generously provided by the author in exchange for an honest review.

7 reviews
February 2, 2023

So in love with Felix and Jack! I could keep reading this story for ever! Thank you J.Daniels for this beautiful tragedy 💓
May 29, 2023
Every so often I come across a book that really moves me and that I know I won’t forget for a long time. The Tragedy of Felix and Jake is one of those books. This was an absolutely beautiful story of pain, heartache, love, acceptance, grief and hope. I cannot recommend this book enough. I could have read about Felix and Jake forever and apparently can talk about them forever based on the size of this review!

The story starts off from Jake’s POV and we get quite a few chapters from him before we get any from Felix. I don’t even know what to say about Jake’s character and his journey. Just that it sounded incredibly hard to be dealing with that addiction and seeing what it’s doing to your family and not being able to control it. I wanted nothing more for him than the very best life could offer.

Felix was an absolutely incredible character. He was hilarious and made me laugh out loud several times. He was a total golden retriever trying so hard to make the most out of the crappy life and I loved that for him. How in the world everyone didn’t love him I have no idea.

Before starting this book I didn’t realize that both characters were addicts so that took me by surprise but I’m really glad this is how the author wrote it as the support, care, love and understanding they had for each other with their addictions was incredible to read about. Now I’ve talked so much about the good stuff in this book but oh the heartache and pain that these two went through is something no one should have to go through. I really appreciated the authors ability to have the tough subjects included in the story but give us some joy and hope in between them.

Honourable mentions were Miguel and Hector (Jake’s coworkers). They were hilarious and had the best of intentions and really brought a lot of light into the story.

I was super excited to see there was a bonus scene and I wish there were a million more bonus scenes. If you could pick any book I’ve read this month to also read I would beg you to read this one and I’m sure you won’t regret it.
Profile Image for Sandra.
142 reviews1 follower
May 23, 2023
Merci a l'auteure pour cette tragédie.
Je ne sais pas si je devais rire ou pleurer.
Felix est si réel, sincère, drôle et tellement une Drama Queen.
Et Jake est tellement en symbiose avec Felix. J'ai adorée cette histoire tellement touchante.
Une addiction détruit des vies
Aimer quelqu'un qui souffre de toxicomanie, alcoolémie n'ai jamais facile, c'est une guerre a vie, se battre contre l'envie, le besoin, le manque... Une parole, un geste peu faire replonger... A tous les Felix et Jake de la terre continuez a vous battre, votre combat vous amène la plus belle des victoires : La Vie.
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