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Strawberries for Dessert

(Coda Books #4)

4.15  ·  Rating details ·  5,095 ratings  ·  510 reviews
When Jonathan Kechter agrees to a blind date with Cole Fenton, he expects nothing more than dinner and a one-night stand... but he gets more than he bargained for in Cole. Cole is arrogant, flamboyant, and definitely not Jon’s type. Still, when Cole suggests an arrangement of getting together for casual sex whenever they're both in town, Jon readily agrees.

Their arrangeme
ebook, 242 pages
Published August 6th 2010 by Dreamspinner Press
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Average rating 4.15  · 
Rating details
 ·  5,095 ratings  ·  510 reviews

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Start your review of Strawberries for Dessert (Coda Books, #4; Strawberries for Dessert, #1)
Julio Genao
Feb 28, 2016 rated it did not like it
two imbeciles initiate a series of idiotic fights interspersed with clinical sex while being defined by a systemic failure to communicate.
4.5 stars

Strawberries for Dessert is such an amazing book. Wonderfully done

• the build-up of the romance
• the characters
• the development of the characters
• the depiction of emotions
• humor
• writing style
• structure
• conflict
• amount of angst
• ending

Only one tiny flaw:
The erotic scenes were not as explicit as I’d like. ;)

My favorite quotes.
Cristina Monica
May 17, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: People who like entertaining characters (and M/M romance.)
(I couldn't resist.)

4.5 ''Can’t get enough'' stars.

Strawberries for dessert was…

An unforgettable story…

See, I didn’t read the other books in the Coda Books series before picking this one up, so I can’t compare this novel from Marie Sexton to others she wrote. I know a lot of reviewers said it’s not as good as the previous ones in the series, but I thought this novel was fantastic! A MUST read for all fans of M/M romance and contemporary. The characters were v
 photo _strawberry__emoticon_by_aha_mccoy_zps2e2d5561.gif  photo _strawberry__emoticon_by_aha_mccoy_zps2e2d5561.gif  photo _strawberry__emoticon_by_aha_mccoy_zps2e2d5561.gif  photo _strawberry__emoticon_by_aha_mccoy_zps2e2d5561.gif  photo _strawberry__emoticon_by_aha_mccoy_zps2e2d5561.gif 5 Strawberry Scented Stars

This is like some sun-warmed, sweet, tiny strawberries - good, sweet, tasteful and colourful - heartbreaking fine and incredibly romantic...

This story is about two guys who create a fuck buddy relationship. They meet when the restless Cole is in town and need a "lover", Jonathan. A settlement both of them think is really good from the start. It's dinner, sex and otherwise just a friend relationship. No kisses, gentle words or promises. Both are
Heather K (dentist in my spare time)
This was a very lovely romance from my new favorite woman, Marie Sexton. I didn't love Cole and Jonathan together at first and I wasn't sure how she would turn this book around. Slowly but surely, I fell for these characters and saw what all the fuss was about.

Now did I love this as much as Promises? No, no, no... sorry, for me they aren't even close. I think part of that has to do with the fact that I have a weakness (with a capital W) for gay first-timers and out-for-you themes. I also had a
*J* Too Many Books Too Little Time
I almost DNFd this book at about 20%. For two reasons.

(1) Fade to black sex....and honestly, this area didn't improve much. I think it started out this way to show how there weren't feelings involved between Cole and Jonathan. It was just a convenient arrangement. Just sex. Obviously over time that changed.

I found Cole to be very hard to like, especially in the beginning. And I never really understood why he was so emotionally closed off. But I grew to like him over time.

(2) All of the pet nam
Jul 26, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Let me start this review with a confession...I was never a Cole fan. It’s not that I disliked him, it’s just that he never registered on my radar as anything other than a plot tool in Marie’s other two books - Promises and The Letter Z. His “friends with benefits” relationship in Promises and his party quickie in The Letter Z just seemed like devices to launch other character stories off. When I read that Marie was planning a whole book involving Cole, as much as I LOVE Marie’s writing, I wasn’t ...more

Unpopular Review Ahead proceed with caution.! Spoiler Ahead!

Ha! I called it! here it comes… Its not the book its me. This book has so many 5 stars reviews and I went in with high hopes. Oh! Boy I ended up disappointed, I thought maybe it will be better on Audio, Oi! It made it worse. (returned the audio.)


I liked Trailer Trash and Promises but this I ended up not liking at all.


Cole - I really wanted to like him but I failed miserably, I did not like his behavior from the beginning of the stor
Optimist ♰King's Wench♰
good story; turrrrrrible narration

3 stars for the story; maybe 3.5. Mebbe.
1 star for the narration

I don't relish being mean but honestly the narration on this was so awful that it hindered my enjoyment of the story. The sad thing is *I think* the story was a good one but I spent the entire time swimming upstream IN A HURRICANE trying to find it!

I listened to a sample but what doesn't happen there is the narrator's uneven speaking style. His cadence is up and down with the added bonus of on the
This book... This book!! I know most of my GR friends loved it but it kept grating on my nerves.

First of all, the people in this story kept blushing:

"I felt myself blush," "I felt myself blush again," "I still saw the blush that had appeared on his cheeks," "I stammered, feeling myself blush," "I felt a blush start to creep up my cheeks," "I suspected it was to keep me from seeing the blush on his cheeks," "his blush deepened," "his blush deepened and he looked away," I saw a blush start to cre

I first read this absolutely delightful book back in the fall of 2011 and it was on my top ten list of favorite books for years. Now that I am on GoodReads, it is on my favorites and fuck yeah, 5+ stars shelves. I did a re-read to get ready for the sequel Fear, Hope, and Bread Pudding in early June 2013. It's just as fabulous as I remember!

Seriously folks, this is a M/M romance no-brainer. If you are new to the M/M romance genre, you have to read this one. It's a staple to the M/M romantic's die
Sweet, tasteful, heartbreaking, wonderful and incredibly romantic...

This story is about two guys goes from "fuck buddy" relationship which was supposed to be so simple, becomes more and more complicated and emotional.

"He was breathless, his hands tearing at my clothes. He even let me kiss him, which he didn’t do often. He tasted like something sweet and fruity. His lips were soft and warm, the sweet smell of his hair so familiar, and whatever had happened, it was all forgotten in a mome
Mirjana **DTR - Down to Read**

***3.5 stars***

I'll admit I wasn't Cole's biggest fan from the first book, but he certainly won me over! I loved his flamboyant side as much as his broken vulnerability.

In the beginning I was a bit disappointed with the fade to black sex scenes, but I eventually caught on that the author was using sex as a visual of how the relationship was unfolding. As the self-protective barriers and walls started to fall, the intimacy began to slowly present itself. Not overly smutty or hot, but enough to s
Dec 01, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: mm-romance
I read this book in one afternoon. This is a very good story, maybe not the best I have read recently, but definitely a fine entertainment. I didn't read the other books in this series, but it wasn't a problem.

The whole story is told mainly from Jonathan's perspective. I don't really like the first-person narrative, but here it doesn't bother me at all. This is because Jon is an interesting hero and his problems and emotions are understandable and not annoying. Cole is much more mysterious. We l
A.J. Llewellyn
Sep 05, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: i-own-a-copy
In spite of nearly giving up on this after a shaky start with Cole being such a flamer - he had me tearing what's left of my hair out - I grew to love this book.
It could have benefitted from ruthless editing - the endless descriptions of Cole's head tossing and tilting with his hair falling in - and away from - his eyes were repetitious and overdone. Then there were his constant darlings, muffins (!), sugars, honeys etc...
but...I grew to love Jonathan who nurses some pretty painful g
Jun 06, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: erotica, m-m, favorite-mm

I love this book, the plot, the characters... everything, but especially Cole! He is adorable, sweet, caring, but so intense! There is this mystery aura surrounding him that is so appealing... no wonder Jon couldn't stop thinking about him!

I was a little scared that Jon wouldn't see what everyone was seeing, but fortunately he saw how much they loved each other, and that he had to give himself to the man of his life, just the way Cole had to drop all the walls that were protecting h
Trisha Harrington
This book blew me away. It was amazing and wonderful and I am so happy I did read this eventually. After hearing about books 2 and 3, I decided to give up on this series. Open relationships are not my thing and I didn't know if I could skip the other two, luckily enough I could.

This book was definitely interesting and it was so different from the first one. I adore both books, but I adore them for different reasons. Which is possibly why both are five star reads in my opinion.

Cole and Jonathan w
4.5 stars

I adored this story. It's probably the best in the series. I loved the unique way it was told in first person from Jonathan but also in emails from Cole to Jared. It was different and gave me the ability to get to know Jonathan but also Cole without having too many POV shifts. It was a nice change.

I loved Jonathan from the start. He's kind of stuck up, serious and boring to some but he has determination and knows what he wants and how to get there. I didn't like Cole in the beginning. A
Kaje Harper
Jun 26, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites, m-m
This is the best version of the flamboyant gay main character that I have read. Usually I don't like books where the big obstacle to the MC's getting together is that each thinks the other is less in love. (Whether m/m or hetero, I want to smack their heads together and say get on with it.) But these two had the other issues, the intrinsic characteristics and the relationship that made it work. The evolution of their love is slow and painful and sweet and makes sense every step of the way.
Jul 14, 2010 rated it really liked it
4.5 stars

I do believe Marie Sexton has done it again. The 4th book in the series just hits a smooth pace and never lets go. Although this is technically part of a series, it’s easily read as a stand alone book. The main characters have cameos as ex’s of the other characters so other than knowing the characters weren’t particularly likable previously, you can pick this one up alone with ease. The solid writing and real flair for great contemporary stories shines here with a story about two diffic
Aug 17, 2010 rated it it was amazing
With "Strawberries for Dessert", Marie Sexton firmly puts herself on my favorite authors list. I am so in love with her characters - how she almost never have one character similar to the others (thank you, Amy, for pointing it that out for me). In this book, we have Jonathan (Zach's ex, from book #2) and Cole (Jared's friend with benefit, from book #1).

It's amazing to have these two characters, that are so different, but so right for each other. Jonathan is so 'straight', not that kind of stra
Apr 28, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: m-m-romance
3.5 Stars

The best part of this book was Cole. I want to get to know him more and go shopping with him. He's flamboyant and he could be a bit pretentious but he would never consider changing for anyone. I could see why Jonathan got irritated with him at times but I loved his attitude and the fact that he made no apologies for it. He is who he is and anyone who doesn't like it could walk out the door. Even though he seemed like nothing could hurt him, it was only because he built up such a strong
Nichole (DirrtyH)
Jul 14, 2010 rated it really liked it
4.5 stars

Here's what I've decided about m/m and one of the many reasons why I love it. In straight romance, you pretty much only get one type of hero - big, dark and broody. In m/m, you get to see a full spectrum of men, from the domineering alpha male to the sweet sensitive guy to the big bright flaming queen. And you get to see why all the different types of guys are beautiful and attractive and wonderful in their own way. Cole is fantastic and I dare you not to love him.

The only real problem
Amy Lane
Jan 28, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Luminous, absolutely luminous. Cole and Jonathan are so terribly wrong for each other, and, in the end, exactly what the other one needs. Cole's emotional fragility is heartbreaking, and Jonathan's dedication to his pride (while irritating) is completely understandable. Their slow, subtle immersion from a purely sexual relationship of convenience to something sublime and painful is a joy to read.
Jan 16, 2013 rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Feb 02, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: mm-romance

For years, I’ve heard people rave about this book. I finally chose to read it. Maybe I expected too much from this book because I was sadly underwhelmed by the story. I wanted to like it, but I felt walled off from the characters. I didn’t get them, Cole, the run-away rich boy least of all.

I was also hoping for more explicit sex scenes. Didn’t happen. This is the third book in the series I’ve read, and while it’s better than the second, it’s nowhere near as good as the first, Promises.


*Buddy read with V <3<3<3*

First, I would like to say that if, like me, you are OCD don't start with this book but with the first book of the Coda Books series. There were too many references to people not in the book for my little OCD self.

That being said, it's not that the writing was bad but even though I liked the emails parts, I never get caught in the story. I think that the main reasons are that there was little character development and not much happened in the book. Also, to be honest I
Jan 24, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Even though I can't really pick a favourite from this fabulous series I do have a strange fondness for Cole who may appear to be flip, 'flaming' and uber sarcastic but underneath is far more layered than meets the eye. This is definitely the best opposites attract story I've read in gay romantic fiction and I loved how these two ultra different characters finally came together to make the perfect fit. A wonderful addition to the series and again a must read.Jon and Coles story - Gorgeous!
4.5 stars. Who knew taking two of the least likable secondary characters in the series and putting them together would make such a good opposites attract story. Loved Jonathan and Cole together.
Elisa Rolle
Dec 09, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
2010 Rainbow Awards Honorable Mention (5* from at least 1 judge)
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Marie Sexton lives in Colorado. She’s a fan of just about anything that involves muscular young men piling on top of each other. In particular, she loves the Denver Broncos and enjoys going to the games with her husband. Her imaginary friends often tag along. Marie has one daughter, two cats, and one dog, all of whom seem bent on destroying what remains of her sanity. She loves them anyway.

Coda: W

Other books in the series

Coda Books (7 books)
  • Promises (Coda Books, #1)
  • A to Z (Coda Books, #2)
  • The Letter Z (Coda Books, #3)
  • Paris A to Z (Coda Books, #5)
  • Fear, Hope, and Bread Pudding (Coda Books, #6; Strawberries for Dessert, #2)
  • Shotgun (Coda #7)

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“I understand addiction now. I never did before, you know. How could a man (or a woman) do something so self-destructive, knowing that they’re hurting not only themselves, but the people they love? It seemed that it would be so incredibly easy for them to just not take that next drink. Just stop. It’s so simple, really. But as so often happens with me, my arrogance kept me from seeing the truth of the matter.
I see it now though.
Every day, I tell myself it will be the last. Every night, as I’m falling asleep in his bed, I tell myself that tomorrow I’ll book a flight to Paris, or Hawaii, or maybe New York. It doesn’t matter where I go, as long as it’s not here. I need to get away from Phoenix—away from him—before this goes even one step further.
And then he touches me again, and my convictions disappear like smoke in the wind.
This cannot end well. That’s the crux of the matter, Sweets. I’ve been down this road before—you know I have—and there’s only heartache at the end. There’s no happy ending waiting for me like there was for you and Matt. If I stay here with him, I will become restless and angry. It’s happening already, and I cannot stop it. I’m becoming bitter and terribly resentful. Before long, I will be intolerable, and eventually, he’ll leave me. But if I do what I have to do, what my very nature compels me to do, and move on, the end is no better. One way or another, he’ll be gone. Is it not wiser to end it now, Sweets, before it gets to that point? Is it not better to accept that this happiness I have is destined to self-destruct?
Tomorrow I will leave. Tomorrow I will stop delaying the inevitable. Tomorrow I will quit lying to myself, and to him.
What about today, you ask? Today it’s already too late. He’ll be home soon, and I have dinner on the stove, and wine chilling in the fridge. And he will smile at me when he comes through the door, and I will pretend like this fragile, dangerous thing we have created between us can last forever.
Just one last time, Sweets. Just one last fix. That’s all I need.
And that is why I now understand addiction.”
“I'm a mess," he said, halfway joking but halfway not. "I'm demanding and temperamental and I'm terribly high maintenance."

I laughed without even meaning to. "Do you honestly think I don't know all that by now?"

"Then how could you possibly love me?"

I held him tighter, kept kissing his neck. "How can I not?”
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