When I picked up the first book in this series, I figured I was taking a chance. I don't have a problem with M/M romance, and I've actually read some pretty graphic stuff that was great, but so often what I find in this genre are covers that scream of sex and deliver very little romance. So the Portland Heat series has been an incredible find, and just like the last two books I loved in this series, Delivered Fast serves up realistic characters, genuine emotion, and intense but believable romance.
Chris owns a cool coffee shop slash restaurant, and his life tends to revolve around the success of his business. A failed long-term romance has soured him on dating and kept him away from even the most casual of encounters. But a delectable new delivery guy has him taking notice, even if he's not sure about acting on his attraction. The guy's definitely younger than him — probably too young — and even though Chris is pretty sure Lance is flirting with him, he's not sure what to make of it. He can't really hide his attraction, though, and he finds himself agreeing to a casual relationship — no expectations and no strings attached.
Lance is not as hesitant to put himself out there, and while he agrees to casual, it soon becomes clear that there's nothing casual about his intentions. Their budding romance is a study in patience, as Lance has to work to get Chris to let down his guard and let his heart show, but Chris doesn't really stand a chance when Lance turns on the charm. Lance was sweet and understanding and patient, and there's just no way Chris couldn't fall for him.
Their age difference was just over a decade, something Chris couldn't seem to get past, but what it really came down to was trust. It seemed like he used age as an excuse, a way to protect himself from believing in Lance and then having his heart broken, so that definitely took some time to work through. And who could blame him, really? Anyone that much older than his significant other would be at least subconsciously waiting for the younger, hotter partner to grow bored or disillusioned or simply find someone more his speed. But Lance's gentle determination just made their happily ever after that much sweeter.
Like the two in the series that came before it, Delivered Fast is pretty much the perfect romance novel. Characters aren't perfect, but their hearts are big, and it's just impossible not to relate to the insecurities and dreams they have. I know I've said it before, but this is one M/M romance series that every romance junkie should be reading.