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Tread Marks & Trademarks by S.A. McAuley

This is the first book in the Team Maker Jock series.

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Tread Marks & TrademarksTread Marks & Trademarks by S.A. McAuley

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

The blurb…

Alex Maddox may be a genius. Or not. In thirty-four days he’ll know for sure. The robot he’s been perfecting for the last four years is finally ready. Alex won’t accept anything less than perfection—if he can keep a broken air conditioner, a flaky twin brother, a thirtieth birthday, and falling for the Norse god of advertising from derailing him.

Christian Lawson is an advertising god. A blond hottie with the beautiful brains to match. He’s worked hard to move past the accident that nearly took his legs, but it’s been years since he let any man get close enough to see just how deep his scars really go.

Christian isn’t the advertising executive Alex expected, and Alex isn’t the coolly confident inventor Christian’s had his eye on for years. But what they discover in each other may just be better than what either of them could have hoped for.

Note: This is a novel that is an expanded and re-edited combined version of the two novellas previously published as The Maker Jock and Tread Marks and Trademarks.

So what did I think?

What makes this story special is the contrast in the main characters.

Firstly we have Alex – geeky and clever and easy to give his heart but fearful of not being wanted for himself. Then there is Christian, advertising high-flyer and astute business man with fabulous good looks but still dealing with the ramifications from a serious accident.

Alex has invented a robot with technology that will revolutionise the world. He is dedicated and focused on his craft and an active participant of the Makers Movement. Until this book, I hadn’t even heard of movement but a quick Google search later and I found out that Maker Movement is very much a real thing! Through his twin brother, Alex is introduced to Christian and a relationship blossoms.

The story follows Alex’s completion of his robot, preparation for a Maker Fair and ultimately his plans for the future. As Alex has success with his technology and receives offers, he and Christian are building their relationship. Alex has been hurt in the past, with people riding his coat tails and waiting for his big break. Interestingly he gives his heart to Christian fairly easily. They also need to deal with Christian’s past as his previous relationship connects with his and Alex’s business venture.

I loved the characters and the story overall however it did take me a while to really get into it but by part 2 of the book I was hooked. I found the Maker Movement interesting but found there was a little too much corporate wheeling and dealing for my liking – I didn’t fully understand all the business negotiation (I probably didn’t really need to know what it meant to follow the story but I hate reading things I don’t fully understand.)

Bonus points for some big romantic gestures, lead characters who want to do good for the world and a nice happy ending!

I loved Micah, Alex’s identical twin – identical in looks but very different in personality – and I’m hoping the next book is his story! (Yes, Micah’s gay too!)

A copy of this book was received from the publisher in return for my honest review.

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To find out more about S.A. McAuley and her books visit her Goodreads Author Profile.

Buy the book from Amazon.

Buy the book from Wilde City Press.

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