We’re all familiar by now with the traditional nerd/jock romance, where the shy nerd falls for the handsome jock, and, despite the rift in their social status, succeeds in winning his heart. It’s a much-loved format, and one I admit to having rather a soft spot for. Yet, in this sweetly sensual novella written for the Goodreads M/M Romance Group’s Love Has No Boundaries event, Madison Parker has flipped this formula on its head in a way I found to be both original and incredibly refreshing.

In many ways, Brandon is your typical jock. He plays baseball for Virginia Tech, and, even after coming out, hangs with the popular crowd and is never short of invitations to parties. As his best friend Jack points out, he could have his pick of the good-looking guys on campus. Brandon doesn’t care. There is only one boy he wants—Jack’s geeky roommate Corey. That combination of brains and self-assurance is totally hot, as far as Brandon’s concerned. The trouble is, Corey seems far more interested in his studies than he is in dating, and appears utterly immune to Brandon’s charm.

Corey might be a math geek, but he has no shortage of confidence. He harbors an ambition to be a cryptologist, and has both the aptitude and determination to succeed. The last thing he needs is the distraction of a social life, let alone a boyfriend. So, when his roommate’s best friend starts openly flirting with him, Corey ignores the instant spark of attraction and holds him at arm’s length. Brandon might be a decent guy, but even if Corey had time for a relationship, it could never work between them. They’re just too incompatible. It soon becomes clear, however, that Brandon isn’t going to give up so easily…

Sexy and fun, Deep in the Count is a quick read that I devoured in a single sitting. It’s a story of challenging stereotypes, and of two guys coming together despite their differences. I defy anyone not to fall in love with Corey and Brandon, and the way in which Brandon sets about convincing Corey to give him a chance is both witty and immensely touching. So, if you’re seeking a cute college romance that goes against the status quo, and which is full of humor and warmth, why not go ahead and download your copy for free?

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