Camilo, or Milo, is a social worker with a heart of solid gold and a sass factor of eleven, while Tom is a billionaire funding a new project through Milo’s agency. Before that relationship is established, though, they happen to have an… er… intimate encounter at a fundraiser and neither can get the other off their minds. When Tom becomes the benefactor to making several of Milo’s professional dreams come true, can the two maintain professional boundaries? Do they need to?
I was charmed by this book from the jump – the book opens with Milo and his favorite colleague at a LGBTQ fundraiser, where they are attending for their boss. Both are social workers and both feel out of place at the $1k-$10k a plate dinner, but they’re – we’re told – working it the best they can. Milo spots a handsome stranger at the bar, quickly discerns he is also gay, and pulls the man towards the bathroom for quite the blow job. No names or numbers exchanged and they were sure to never see each other again.
We know better, though, fellow readers, don’t we?
Open on the next day at work where Milo’s boss tells him they got a huge grant to renovate a residential home for domestic violence victims at their Harlem-based nonprofit and Milo will be the main point guy. He’s bilingual, which is one of the requirements of the donor, and his boss is absolutely confident he’s the right guy for the job. He is too – until the benefactor walks through the door. Of course it’s Handsome Blow Job Guy. Of course it is.
Thomas Hughes is a Dominican immigrant to the U.S. who sold his company several years before for a hefty profit and is now interested in using some of that cash to provide resources to domestic violence survivors due to some family history. The project is important to him, yes, but he probably wouldn’t have requested weekly in-person meetings if his contact at the agency hadn’t been Super Hot Blow Job guy.
They’re in each other’s lives before they can really blink and rubbing up against each other’s baggage and various neuroses. This is 100% a love-at-first-sight tale, with a sprinkle of forced proximity for good measure, and if that is your booknip, friend – one-click this now.
I mention Tom’s ethnic identity because it is central to who he is in this tale – the same way Milo’s status as an American-born son of a Cuban immigrant is to his. They spend lots of time talking about what being Dominican means to Tom’s sense of self (especially as he presents as white), and what being a brown-skinned Latinx queer person means to Milo’s. We spend time with their people – family and friends and Tom’s daughter from his first marriage – and in their heads and by the time these two men commit to the HEA, we are absolutely guaranteed it’s gonna work.
The big conflict is why this is not quite a DIK for me. I didn’t love how Milo handled the resolution and felt there was too much give from one party and not from the other and it just rubbed me the wrong way.
Overall, however, American Fairytale is a delightful romance about two people deciding to take a risk with their hearts and finding it well worth their time.