Reviewed by Donna
TITLE: Life is Not a Musical
SERIES: Woodstock Love #1
AUTHOR: Vicktor Alexander
PUBLISHER: MLR Press
LENGTH: 212 Pages
RELEASE DATE: August 11, 2017
When Nathaniel “Than” Kelly is told to uncover and report on the secrets in widowed billionaire, viral sensation, single dad, Dominic Montgomery’s closet on why he’s so hell bent in giving his daughter the world, he doesn’t expect to lose his heart in the process; but it may be too late to earn forgiveness of a man who has already experienced loss and betrayal.
Widowed, billionaire father, Dominic Montgomery would do anything to make his daughter, Vienna, smile. Whether it’s taking her to see Taylor Swift in concert every time she’s close to Woodstock to dressing up in a tutu and dancing in her ballet recital to singing Disney songs anywhere… anytime. He’s doing everything he can to be the perfect father. Even if that means pretending he’s in a Disney movie, the handsome prince in search of his princess. There’s just one problem.
Dominic’s bisexuality. It’s a secret he was planning to take to his grave, but his wife discovered it and it caused her death. But when word gets out about his “Musical Day” and undercover reporter Than Kelly arrives, Dominic falls… HARD. But, can he put aside his guilt to find his own happily-ever-after with the man who may just be his fairytale come true, or will he allow it to rule him forever?
I adore Disney movies. Actually, I adore all musicals but Disney movies are something that I’ve never grown out of. So when I perused the blurb for this book, I knew that I had to read it. And I’m glad that I did. But I must confess that I had kind of a love hate relationship with the story. I didn’t like it at first. To the degree that had it not been a review book I’d been given a copy of, I probably wouldn’t have bothered finishing it. It felt like a battle to get through each page, and I did wonder if it was worth the effort, but then suddenly I came out the other side to discover the remainder of a book that I totally enjoyed.
My issue was with the characters. I don’t believe that I’ve ever read a book where I disliked EVERY SINGLE CHARACTER before. Let’s begin with reporter, Than. While I loved the way the author made him the perfect “princess” for this fairytale (physically at least), he was completely spineless. And he dealt with his problems by burying his head in the sand and vowing to deal with them later. Then he seems shocked when it all blows up in his face. For a brilliant billionaire, I thought Dominic was kind of an idiot. He’s sexually attracted to men and women, was married to a woman, but doesn’t understand this dual attraction because he’s gay. Or so he’s set on believing. He knows what “bisexual” means but despite him being the definition of bisexual, he simply doesn’t think he is. He insists that he’s gay. Although, it was a marked change to many m/m characters insisting that they’re straight. I wanted to shake him, slap him, and scream at him to get his head out of his ass. But then it all made sense. The author explained everything perfectly, obviously it was the plan all along, and suddenly I felt for this character. Vienna, no, I didn’t like the child either. She told her dad to wear a tutu, so he did. She said she wanted a superhero party, so she got one. This kid opens her little mouth and knows that her orders are going to be followed. The parent in me found a safe corner to curl up in because that would not end prettily. In my head, that kid looked exactly like Veruca Salt, and I was just waiting for the “I want it now”. But…again, the author somehow showed her to be a kid I could like. I don’t know how, but it’s true. Three main characters that started off cringe worthy, to me at least, and hell, don’t even get me started on Than’s BFF. She’s the one character that I never warmed too. Anyhow, while that may seem like a whole lot of negativity, some of it actually became a positive. I really was impressed by how the author revealed Dominic’s thoughts and made me come to understand him. His reasoning, while completely messed up, made perfect sense.
But, oh, Musical Day. Musical Day made my struggles with the first half of this story worthwhile. Musical Day made me smile and battle to hold in a squeal or two. The book references the movie Enchanted, and that’s pretty much how I imagined Musical Day would look. Real life people singing, dancing and prancing in concert… Oh gee, I’m smiling again. I HEART MUSICAL DAY.
I’m going to recommend this one to readers who don’t mind kids in their stories, and anyone who likes a bit of fairytale magic.