By Fault is the third book of the Anderson Stables series, and while you can read it as a stand-alone, I don’t really recommend it. Especially since the series features the same couple, Vince and Dustin, and their life together. It would be better, I think, if you’re with Vince and Dustin from the very beginning, when Dustin first stumbled into Anderson Stables after being thrown out of his house for his sexuality and living on the street.
This book focuses on twelve-week long Winter Equestrian Festival in Florida where Vince and his horse, Xander, will be competing at the international level in the show jumping classes. His lover for over two years, Dustin, is also present as both his groom and his support.
I thought the book was similar in tone with the previous one – despite what the blurb said, I thought the story was light, easy breezy, and practically conflict free. Yes, Vince and Dustin had their fight at one point. Yes, there was new progress about Dustin’s past that made an appearance later in the book. However, it didn’t really create any dramatic situations. They both resolved pretty quickly. As a matter of fact, I thought things were going nicely for both Vince and Dustin – personally and professionally (in Vince’s case). It felt humdrum at times though.
The story was also pretty light on the sexual side – so those of you looking for sexy rumbles between the two young men will be disappointed. In the previous book, Vince acknowledged himself as asexual, after learning about his lack of sexual drive over the years. Dustin also wasn’t a sexual kind of guy, although for him it was also slightly a result of him living as a prostitute for two years. So, the sexual side was pretty tame, only a handful of kisses and other things were fade to black. I didn’t mind, of course, being an asexual myself, I don’t need sex scenes to enjoy romance.
Bottom line, I think this is the only series I know that handles the ins and outs of the equestrian world and I enjoyed it wholeheartedly. I will definitely return to another book in this series, should Riley decides to continue with it because I want to see Vince conquering more competitions.
The ARC is provided by the publisher for an exchange of fair and honest review. No high rating is required for any ARC received.