Friends to lovers in a frustrating way ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Adorable and frustrating all at once, this friends to lovers romance is well written and filled with deep emotion. It’s a laidback, low angst book with a nice combination of sweetness and steam. I enjoyed a lot of the story but Axel and Lia’s hesitancy to move forward – both in the past and in the present – definitely got to me after awhile. Neither one denies their attraction to the other but they won’t admit that they want more.

Essentially, the story follows Lia and Axel, lifelong friends who have harbored feelings for each other since they were teens. Knowing Lia planned to leave town after high school, Axel never made his move. Now that Lia has moved back to town, there doesn’t seem to be anything holding them back from crossing the line. But when Lia moves in with Axel temporarily (as a roommate), it complicates everything. How do you attempt to date your best friend when you’re living with her?

I liked the first book in this series a lot so I was looking forward to Axel’s story and it didn’t disappoint. He’s a great guy whose feelings for Lia are already set in stone from the start of the book, which was an interesting change from the typical romance. My biggest complaint? Oddly enough, that their feelings weren’t unrequited. It’s one thing to read a friends to lovers romance where one wants more and the other doesn’t for a while, but these two have had some idea of the other’s feelings for YEARS and still didn’t do anything about it. If you truly think someone is the one (and know they likely feel the same), how do you let them move away for 10+ years without even TRYING first? They’d really rather watch their person date other people and lose contact over the years than risk the friendship? That’s endlessly frustrating to me. Axel and Lia’s transition from friends to lovers isn’t the smoothest, but I was definitely rooting for these two. It was easy to see how much they cared about each other, and I never questioned their feelings. Overall, it’s a pretty laidback read with plenty of sweetness and a slow burn that has plenty of steam later on. I received a free copy of this book via Booksprout and am voluntarily leaving a review.

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