by Alexis Hall
Series: Boyfriend Material #2
Published by Sourcebooks Casablanca
Release Date: August 2, 2022
Genres: Adult, Contemporary Romance, LGBTQ+, M/M, Romance
Format Read: ARC, eBook
Buy on Amazon
One (very real) husband
Nowhere near perfect but desperately trying his best
In BOYFRIEND MATERIAL, Luc and Oliver met, pretended to fall in love, fell in love for real, dealt with heartbreak and disappointment and family and friends…and somehow figured out a way to make it work. Now it seems like everyone around them is getting married, and Luc’s feeling the social pressure to propose. But it’ll take more than four weddings, a funeral, and a bowl full of special curry to get these two from I don’t know what I’m doing to I do.
Good thing Oliver is such perfect HUSBAND MATERIAL.
I received this book for free from Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
Just a few little house keeping items:
First, if you haven’t read Boyfriend Material… then you should probably go ahead and do that before you even continue reading this review.
Second, if you go ahead and read Boyfriend Material (or already have) then you are already aware of what a little gem it is.
Finally, Husband Material is also a little gem but be warned, it’s a little bit more on the serious side than its predecessor.
Husband Material is from Luc’s point of view.
The story picks up two years after Luc and Oliver pulled their heads out of their asses and got together for real. And they are adorable, in love, and they are in a really good place.
As happy as Luc and Oliver are, Luc is feeling some “pressure” (from his own self mind you) because a lot of his friends lives and relationships are changing faster than his own is. The Royce Royce’s have a baby, Bridget is getting married, heck, even Luc’s no good, dirty rotten ex boyfriend is getting married. So he feels like something is missing in his own relationship. This leads to some rash decisions, some miscommunications and arguments and some soul searching on both Luc and Oliver’s parts.
I’ve always been team Loliver (*yes I just gave them a couples name- no it’s not official). I think they are both interesting individuals, but I love that they bring out the best in each other when they are together. I love the honesty and acceptance in their relationship. I also love that even when there has been a miscommunication, they are still on the same page.
If Boyfriend Material was a book about Luc’s character growing and becoming the best version of himself, then Husband Material was Oliver’s moment in the spot light.
I liked seeing how Luc and Oliver navigated their relationship’s growing pains. It was nice to read about a couple who trusted each other and didn’t automatically assume the worst. They never really shied away from conflict because they knew the other one so intimately.
Luc was broken down and broken apart then put back together in Boyfriend Material. It was incredibly satisfying to see him become the rock in his relationship this go round.
Oliver’s metaphorical buttons came undone in this novel. Oliver sought out counseling and was working through his generational trauma and anxieties in this novel. What really made my little heart sing though was that Oliver finally, FINALLY, had a support system. I loved that he finally was able to fully be himself. It was Oliver’s turn to break down and fall apart, and it was Luc’s turn to help him put the pieces back together.
As a cisgender woman, I couldn’t personally identify with Oliver’s struggle with the LGBTQ+ community/ where he fits into it. Or how his gender expression differed from Luc’s.
But, I can empathize. His battle did not sound easy or simple and while I couldn’t put myself in his exact shoes; the content in Husband Material felt like something that many deal with daily. I think that this book will make a lot of people feel seen while reading.
Which I think is fantastic.
I’m obviously a fan of this book, but for as much as I did enjoy it, there were a few things I wish were a little different.
Wish Numero Uno: We’re two years out from the first novel- a check in and a quick little recap/catch up would have been really helpful/nice. I re read Boyfriend Material before I dove into Husband Material, and I would really recommend it. Alexis Hall just drops you off right where the last book left off and leaves you to it.
Wish Numero Dos: I wish we had less of Luc and his group of friends (especially) at the beginning of the novel. I really truly didn’t give a shit about Priya or Bridget or Luc’s ex- whose wedding Luc inexplicably felt obligated to go to. I felt like I could have skipped those parts. I came to see Oliver and Luc, and how they learned and grew and leaned in to each other and we really only got a focus solely on them around 45/50% in. Which was annoying if I’m being truthful here.
I think the amount of growth and maturing that Luc did in Husband Material was fantastic. His character arc was wonderful, I fell in love with him all over again. Oliver struggled so much more openly in Husband Material it was really heart breaking. I was glad that he finally was true to himself. When I was done reading, I looked back on Boyfriend Material and Oliver would have read as a much more tragic character had I known then what I know now. Oliver deserved so much more from the people in his life and Luc was honestly a God Send.
I don’t know that I LOVE the ending.
I’m glad it was a HEA and I know happy endings can look different for everybody.
The ending just felt a little out of character to me, I feel like an epilogue would have done wonders in this situation and I would have loved a little fast forward, future”update”
It was a really good follow up to Boyfriend Material.
It didn’t have the same magic behind it that BM had, but it was still special and sweet and raw and that’s one of the things I like about Alexis Halls writing.
Emily is a coffee loving, cat snuggling, baby wearing book-a-holic.
After retiring from a decade long career in the hair and make-up industry to stay home with her babies, everyone (meaning Emily’s husband) thought it was high time for her to get a hobby that did not involve her kids. Having always been a voracious reader and devouring books at a breakneck speed, joining the bookish and blogging community seemed like a natural next step. She loves giving recommendations to friends and family and then very gently (and not forcefully at all) asking for their opinions after they complete each chapter.
Her reviews tend to be goofy, a little sweary, on the more impassioned side and maybe sometimes a little self deprecating.
Emily typically enjoys reading almost every genre, including (but not limited to) literary fiction, rom-com, contemporary, LGBTQ+, fantasy, paranormal, dystopian, sci-fi, gothic and dark romance or basically any book that will make her cry.