Lustful Literature

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Starting From Scratch (Housemates #5) by Jay Northcote Review Tour







Buy Links

Amazon US | Amazon UK 

Cover: Garrett Leigh

Length: 57,000 words

The Housemates Series is a collection of standalone stories set around a student house in Britain. Each book focuses on new characters, with themes of self-discovery and sexual awakening.

Helping Hand (Book #1) Amazon US | Amazon UK
Like A Lover (Book #2) Amazon US | Amazon UK
Practice Makes Perfect (Book #3) Amazon US | Amazon UK
Watching and Wanting (Book #4) Amazon US | Amazon UK



Starting over isn’t easy, but Ben is ready to live his life as the man he was always meant to be.

Ben is transgender and back at university after hormone treatment and chest surgery. His new housemates have no idea about his history and Ben would prefer to keep it that way. He’s starting from scratch and his life is finally on track, except in the romance department. The idea of dating guys as a guy is exhilarating but terrifying, because if Ben wants a boyfriend he’ll have to disclose his secret.

Sid is drawn to Ben from the moment they meet. He normally gets what he wants—in the short term at least. Ben’s guarded at first, and Sid’s not used to guys rejecting his advances. He eventually charms his way through Ben’s defences and helps Ben on his journey of sexual awakening.

It doesn’t matter to Sid that Ben is trans. He’s attracted to the whole person, and isn’t worried about what is—or isn’t—in Ben’s pants. They’re good together, and both of them are falling hard and fast, but Ben’s insecurities keep getting in the way. If Sid can convince Ben he’s committed, will Ben finally be able to put his heart on the line?

Although this book is part of the Housemates series, it has new main characters, a satisfying happy ending, and can be read as a standalone.




Since the day I fell in love with reading m/m novels my eyes and my heart have been opened up to whole other world that I didn’t know a lot about.  I’ve been grateful that through  these characters journeys, I’ve gotten a greater understanding for some of the daily struggles that someone who’s LGBTQ deals with.  This next book in the Housemates series I think is probably my favourite one because not only was the story outstanding, it was also enlightening and brilliantly written.  Jay brings us a story that is so honest and real that there is no way you can’t help but feel every emotion through the main characters journey.  The struggles, insecurities, and courage that Ben lives through really was remarkable to witness and eye opening for this reader.


I really loved watching Ben and Sid navigate their way through their relationship especially since this kind of relationship was new for both of them.  Jay really gave us such an in depth look into Ben’s feelings and what it looked like as he got more comfortable with himself and how his trust in Sid grew.  I especially loved how open Sid was and how he never once treated Ben less than the man he was.  The honesty and openness they shared really established a remarkable connection where they were totally in sync with one another.


This is my first time reading any kind of story with a transgender character be it male or female, and what I took away most from this story is how much I felt like I learned from reading it.  The openness, acceptance and heart that came across throughout the pages made this story feel like I was a part of Ben’s journey. I really feel like I gained so much through Ben and Sid.


I would highly recommend this book to everyone who is a fan of Jay Northcote. He truly brought us an exceptionally sweet and sexy story that will definitely open up your heart and mind more than you thought possible.  I can’t wait to see what comes next.








Author Bio

Jay lives just outside Bristol in the West of England. He comes from a family of writers, but always used to believe that the gene for fiction writing had passed him by. He spent years only ever writing emails, articles, or website content.

One day, Jay decided to try and write a short story—just to see if he could—and found it rather addictive. He hasn’t stopped writing since.

Jay writes contemporary romance about men who fall in love with other men. He has five books published by Dreamspinner Press, and also self-publishes under the imprint Jaybird Press. Many of his books are now available as audiobooks.

Jay is transgender and was formerly known as she/her.
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