Hello, lovelies! 🌸 I started this month reading the most wonderful book of the year.
Where to begin? How should I describe the masterpiece that is After Felix by Lily Morton?
In one word: stunning. And even now while writing this I feel this word is not good enough to describe this book.
I’ve been a fan of Lily Morton for a while now, I’ve read most – if not all – of her amazing books and every one of them has been a golden egg.
After Felix is book 3 in her Close Proximity series. All the books connect through the characters. Every book needs to be read in order (tho the author says they can be read as standalone) but dear readers, you will not regret these books. This series also introduces characters from previous books but not in a deep role – still, I recommend all her books 100/100.
After Felix tells the story in two parts: the first one is about Felix and Max meeting and part 2 takes place years later where Max and Felix finally get together again.
Part 1; Felix and Max meet in a bookstore – and fall secretly in love.
- When Felix and Max initially meet is magical and hilarious: Felix is at a bookstore looking for a birthday gift when he finds a book written by Max, he just doesn’t know who Max is or that he’s the writer. He jokes around on the phone about the book with a friend and Max is there watching and falling just a little bit in love – but he doesn’t know it yet.
- The relationship is initially about sex. The sexual attraction is instant and from there is all about carnal pleasure. The writer is amazing at placing little tells even during sex – like small secrets about the characters that we notice and start to love and wonder – that keeps us sitting at the edge of the chair. (Also, the teasing even during sex is AMAZING. The sexual attraction is so real).
- The initial agreement is sex and only sex. No feelings, just meeting and have some sexy times. There is no talking about feelings – unless is about what they like in the bed.
- Felix is the one who starts falling in love first (spoiler: but we later learn that it was in fact Max) but at the same time, he senses a wall between him and Max. Max who is there just for the sex yet does things that make Felix believe there could be something else.
- They have conversations, small moments that make you wonder if there is more within Max’s feelings. But then Max goes on to be a jerk – without really meaning to be – and we want to strangle him.
- This book broke my heart in multiple places in many, many scenes; but it also made me laugh out loud. Felix is everything – sassy, snarky, sarcastic, smart-mouth, and witty. He enjoys living in his small boat and is not necessarily looking for love but is not against it. He loves sex and sexual interactions with different people – is all about having a good time. He is not ashamed of this part, he enjoys sex and that’s all.
- Felix is also independent and throughout his life, he has always been second something that takes a toll during the entire book:
“I’ve been second place all my life—with my dad and his new family, with my mum too obsessed with her lost relationship to see me. I was even an interloper with Misha’s family when I lived with them. For once in my life, I thought I’d found someone I could care about, someone who might reciprocate. I’d been lulled by the great sex, the intense conversations and laughs, the way he looked after me, only to find that I’m bloody second place yet again.”38% into the book
- Felix breaks my heart so many times during this book. He hides his pain under his sarcastic and clever mouth – but inside he bleeds pain.
Part 2: Where we have angst, love and hilarious moments.
- The first part of the book is all about Felix and his POV, we see through his eyes Max’s hesitation to connect on a deeper level but we also see their moments together, their laugh and idiocy. We see Max who loves another man and Felix realizing he will never be able to have Max (I know the future Felix, and you will get your man).
- In the second part of the book, we see Max’s POV, his suffering, the realization of his feelings for Felix, how he drowns in alcohol and whoring because he has lost Felix. We also see Max who is a bit childish, chaotic, funny, charming, and a silver tongue.
“You should have someone,” he says, suddenly fierce. He grabs my hand, and I gasp as he drops a kiss on my palm, folding my fingers over it and watching the movement as if in a dream. He looks up at me. “You’re amazing, Felix. The best person I know and you deserve everything. I wish you joy.” He drops my hand and backs up a few steps. “You need joy,” he says earnestly.
I want so desperately to grab him, to hold onto him, to see if we could have something again. But then I remember his stumbling, drunken confession of love for Ivo, and my soft impulse hardens. I won’t be someone else’s second thought. I deserve more. “Thank you,” I say calmly. “I’m sure I will be.”
But when he turns to walk away, his hunched shoulders make me blink back tears. “You too.”
He turns back. “Me too, what?”
“You need joy.”42% into the book
- The second part is in my opinion the funniest, Max and Felix are all over the place. They are sneaky, two lovely idiots, and anyone can see how much they are in love. Every time Max introduces Felix he always gets the same ‘huh’ reaction from people (like when people know something that you don’t know) yes, like everyone knows Max loves Felix except Felix.
- At the beginning of part 2 we see how Felix is not in a relationship, he may not be completely happy but he’s going through the everyday routine. Even though the relationship ends rather quickly once Max is in the picture is within these small moments we laugh the most: like Felix running over Max with his care – bravo Ms. Morton!
- The scenes between Max and Felix in Venice is everything. Visiting the city, dancing together, being completely in love – it was wonderful.
- There is a lot of angst – but the type that is normal in a book where we have a second chance for love. Max is an idiot but he starts to understands that there is no one for him except Felix. There is no one else for him only Felix and for Felix is the same, he Max is his all.
- I just absolutely loved everything in this book, the character, the hilarious comments, the pacing in the book, the friends and co-workers, Max being hit by Felix’s car, Max bribing Felix, Felix and Max in Venice, Felix and Max dancing together, Felix and Max buying a bigger boat to live happily ever after.