Well, I didn’t dislike it, but I also wouldn’t say that I liked it. If you’ve ever gotten to the end of a book and sort of gave a little shrug, I think that’s where I’m at with this one. It’s my first time reading something by this author and the saucy pickle puns drew me in, but the writing itself didn’t work for me. Considering this is written by an established author, I feel sort of weird saying that the writing reminded me of someone just starting out, but… yeah, it really did. There’s a ton of internalization, the characters don’t actually spend a lot of time on the page together, and there’s a glossed-over feeling to their relationship. That’s not to say that I didn’t enjoy some of the more comedic moments and the overall plot, but there were a lot of things that missed the mark.
The story follows Anthony and Magnolia, two people whose families run dueling delis. When they enter a pickle competition and things go horribly wrong, these two rivals discover that teaming up is to their advantage. And if people want to ship their relationship to distract from the larger issue, even better. But all of that faking starts to feel very real, and the lines quickly blur.
On paper, this sounds like the EXACT type of book I’d love. I’m a rom com lover, fake relationships are my favorite, and quirky comedy is my catnip. This had many elements that I loved, from the light and funny vibe to the likable characters. But the plot also felt pretty rough and unpolished, with a writing style that read a little simplistic. It also took nearly half the book before Magnolia and Anthony spend any sort of time together at all, and so much of the story was TOLD to the reader, rather than shown. I didn’t have a lot of emotional investment in their relationship because of that, which didn’t help. Ultimately, I wanted to like this more than I did. I received an early copy and am voluntarily leaving a review of this light romance.
First, she tampered with my pickle.
Then, she got us both kicked off a cooking show.
Now, we’re fake engaged.
Sit back, friends, this is one crazy tale of treachery and pickle juice.
All right. Here’s how it went.
My pickle went viral. Millions saw it. Thousands ate it.
Hold up, pervs. Let me backtrack.
I invented a very spicy pickle made with ghost peppers. One bite and you’ll swear someone stuffed a hot coal in your mouth. It’s extremely popular in pranks.
I’m in the middle of filming with a prominent cooking show when in walks Little Miss Perfect Pants from a rival deli to insist she has improvements for my pickle.
It all goes downhill from there.
Read the reviews and weep, Anthony Pickle.
I got the best of you on reality TV.
You got me back with a very public kiss.
After your new deli poached on my territory, I swore to hate you. But every time those smoky eyes meet mine, I melt a little.
By the time you’ve kissed me, I already know I’m in deep.
But then you propose?
How am I supposed to keep faking it when every swoon is real?
Spicy Pickle is a romantic comedy about a culinary feud, potent pickle juice, and the most not-fake fake love story in the history of reality TV.
About the Author:
JJ Knight is the USA Today bestselling author of contemporary romance and romantic comedy. She’s never met a pickle she didn’t want to eat.
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