The third time’s the charm! I was mentally prepared for this to devastate me, and that made the reading experience go much smoother. If you think I’m joking, then you clearly haven’t read this author’s first two books, lol! She is a phenomenal writer, but I found the tonal shift in her first two books to be too jarring, and they kinda wrecked me (and wrecked the books for me too, in a way). That wasn’t the case with this one; there’s a bittersweet tone to the entire book, and it’s sprinkled with heartache. This is still very much a rom com, with plenty of light and carefree moments, but you know everything is going to come to a head at some point. I loved the opposites attract dynamic; Adrian is such a workaholic that days pass by without him even realizing it, while Vanessa doesn’t take a moment for granted. Their lifestyles are completely different, but they end up being perfect complements for each other, and that was so great to read.
The story follows Vanessa, a woman who knows she has a 50/50 chance of developing ALS, a disease that has taken the lives of several women in her family before they reached the age of thirty. Knowing that, she lives every day as if it could be her last, and she’s built up a successful vlog dedicated to the cause. Though she’s very successful, Vanessa’s life seems to be one never-ending hot mess, and she would never wish that on anyone else – or bring anyone else into that (possibly temporary) life. So her world gets complicated when she becomes the guardian to a baby girl, meets a man who makes her feel complete, and finds herself falling in love against her will.
It took awhile for me to like Vanessa, because she is so focused on her death. Simple as that. I appreciate that the author wove that storyline into the whole book, but it does take a bit to wrap your head around. Adrian, on the other hand, I loved right away. He doesn’t know what hit him, and he’s completely unprepared for the whirlwind that is Vanessa. I loved the two of them together, and the quieter moments are fantastic. This author has a skill for putting her readers on an emotional journey, and this has a little of everything. The back half was really the strongest part of the book for me, which is the opposite of my last two experiences with her work. Once Vanessa won me over, I was entirely invested in their love story, and that made the ups and downs more impactful. This is a rom com with emotion, and just the kind of book I love to read. I was lucky enough to receive an early copy (then purchased it for my collection), and am voluntarily leaving a review of this heartfelt romance.
A brilliant and touching romantic comedy from the USA Today bestselling author of The Friend Zone and The Happy Ever After Playlist. When Vanessa Price quit her job to pursue her dream of traveling the globe, she wasn’t expecting to gain millions of YouTube followers who shared her joy of seizing every moment. For her, living each day to its fullest isn’t just a motto. Her mother and sister never saw the age of 30, and Vanessa doesn’t want to take anything for granted. But after her half sister suddenly leaves Vanessa in custody of her baby daughter, life goes from “daily adventure” to “next-level bad” (now with bonus baby vomit in hair). The last person Vanessa expects to show up offering help is the hot lawyer next door, Adrian Copeland. After all, she barely knows him. No one warned her that he was the Secret Baby Tamer or that she’d be spending a whole lot of time with him and his geriatric Chihuahua. Now she’s feeling things she’s vowed not to feel. Because the only thing worse than falling for Adrian is finding a little hope for a future she may never see.
Check out Jimenez’s other books!
My relationship with Jimenez’s work is complicated. I can’t think of another author whose work I look forward to immensely, even though I know that it will inevitably make me angry. Yes, really. Her writing is so good that she gets you wrapped up in these relationships, only to pull the rug out from under the couples. Both The Friend Zone and The Happy Ever After Playlist are phenomenal reads… that ultimately earned 3-star ratings from me. And I’m still not happy about it. They are way too good for 3-star ratings, but that reflects my level of anger at the endings. And you know what? I’d still wholeheartedly recommend either one. It’s a weird situation, honestly.
About the Author:
Abby Jimenez is a Food Network winner and USA Today bestselling author. She founded Nadia Cakes out of her home kitchen back in 2007. The bakery has since gone on to win numerous Food Network competitions and has amassed an international cult following. Abby’s wry literary wit was spotlighted as the admin behind the hilarious viral comments on the now famous Nadia Cakes Vageode ® cake. Abby loves a good romance, coffee, doglets, and not leaving the house.
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