The pairing A novel

Casey McQuiston

Book - 2024

"Theo and Kit have been a lot of things: childhood best friends, crushes, in love, and now estranged exes. After a brutal breakup on the transatlantic flight to their dream European food and wine tour, they exited each other's lives once and for all. Time apart has done them good. Theo has found confidence as a hustling bartender by night and aspiring sommelier by day, with a long roster of casual lovers. Kit, who never returned to America, graduated as the reigning sex god of his pastry school class and now bakes at one of the finest restaurants in Paris. Sure, nothing really compares to what they had, and life stretches out long and lonely ahead of them, but - yeah. It's in the past. All that remains is the unused voucher f...or the European tour that never happened, good for 48 months after its original date and about to expire. Four years later, it seems like a great idea to finally take the trip. Solo. Separately. It's not until they board the tour bus that they discover they've both accidentally had the exact same idea, and now they're trapped with each other for three weeks of stunning views, luscious flavors, and the most romantic cities of France, Spain, and Italy. It's fine. There's nothing left between them. So much nothing that, when Theo suggests a friendly wager to see who can sleep with their hot Italian tour guide first, Kit is totally game. And why stop there? Why not a full-on European hookup competition? But sometimes a taste of everything only makes you crave what you can't have"--

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Subjects
Genres
Bisexual fiction
Romance fiction
Humorous fiction
Novels
Romans
Published
New York : St. Martin's Griffin 2024.
Language
English
Main Author
Casey McQuiston (author)
Edition
First edition
Physical Description
pages cm
ISBN
9781250862747
Contents unavailable.
Review by Publisher's Weekly Review

The latest from bestseller McQuiston (Red White and Royal Blue) delivers all the hallmarks their readers will expect with lovable queer heroes and zany side characters aplenty. Childhood best friends turned lovers turned exes, aspiring sommelier Theo and pastry chef Kit reunite while cashing in the vouchers for the European food and wine tour they initially purchased while still together. Because they each waited until the last minute before the vouchers expired to use them, they must now spend the next several weeks in close company on the tour, taking in the sights, smells, and tastes of France, Spain, and Italy. It's a fun and silly conceit with plenty of room for scenic travelogue and mounting sexual tension, marred only by the fact that Theo, who is nonbinary, is not identified as such until more than halfway through, meaning they are misgendered by other characters and readers alike until that point--a distraction from what is otherwise a near-utopian vision of queerness in which almost every character proves to be something other than heterosexual. Despite this quibble, it's a mouthwatering feast. Agent: Sara Megibow, KT Literary. (Aug.)

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Review by Library Journal Review

Four years ago, Kit and Theo were on their way to their dream European food and wine tour, but after their brutal breakup on the flight, they were both left heartbroken at the airport without their longtime best friend-turned-lover, but with a voucher for the now-canceled tour. Now Kit is a pastry chef in Paris, and Theo is an aspiring sommelier in California. They haven't spoken since their breakup, but then they discover that they've each cashed in their respective vouchers for the tour on the same date. Forced to spend three weeks together on a bus, Kit and Theo launch a hookup competition to prove that they're over each other, are able to date others, and can go back to being friends. Because they can definitely be just friends, right? VERDICT Lush scenery, well-drawn secondary characters, and believable, grounded conflicts lead to a sweet and satisfying ending for Kit and Theo in McQuiston's (I Kissed Shara Wheeler) funniest, sexiest novel to date, here in a special edition with painted edges.--Whitney Kramer

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Review by Kirkus Book Review

Two exes reunite on a food tour of Europe and attempt to prove to each other--and themselves--that they've moved on. Theo and Kit were childhood best friends who eventually became a couple--until a disastrous breakup on the flight to a European food and wine tour. They haven't spoken in several years, and both have found success, if not happiness, in their chosen fields. Kit made a life for himself in Paris, where he's a pastry chef. Theo is a bartender with an encyclopedic knowledge of wine and dreams of being a sommelier. Their abandoned European tour gave them a voucher that would expire in 48 months, and right at the end of that window Theo decides to redeem it, never dreaming that Kit would decide to use his voucher on the same exact trip. But, of course, he does, meaning the two of them are stuck together for three weeks, alongside a flirtatious tour guide named Fabrizio and a cast of adventurous travelers and eaters. Kit and Theo strike an uneasy truce to get along for the duration of the trip, but in an effort to prove they're totally over each other--and to burn off the sexual tension that's radiating between them--they make a "sex wager": Whoever hooks up with the most people while on the tour wins. Kit and Theo are both bisexual, which gives them a wide pool of applicants--and, in a slightly unbelievable turn, seemingly everyone they meet is attracted to them. The emphasis on Kit and Theo's physical conquests does add to the atmosphere of their booze-filled, hedonistic summer trip, but at times it also detracts from the romance. Kit and Theo's long, often tumultuous relationship is the beating heart of the book, and the story is most successful when it focuses on their emotional and physical bonds. Bestselling author McQuiston creates well-rounded characters in Kit and Theo, and, crucially, shows how they've changed since their initial romance to make the possibility of a second chance feel earned. The story is packed with enough detail to make readers feel like they, too, are on the tour--there are lengthy descriptions of the art Kit and Theo see, as well as the food they eat and the endless amounts of wine they drink. An evocative summer romance that will take readers on a journey filled with food, wine, and sex. Copyright (c) Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

Copyright (c) Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.