Just like Spoiler Alert, this slow burn romance has such a unique feel. It tackles subjects that aren’t commonly found in romance, with a vibe that is distinct and original. Personally, it took me a little while to get into the writing style; there’s just something about it that’s difficult for me to engage with, but once I settled into this story, I enjoyed it. I’ve been looking forward to Alex’s love story and he did not disappoint – he’s a handful, with a sweet yet surly personality that is equalparts adorable and infuriating. Lauren makes a great match for him, and that only became more apparent as the story progressed. This strangers to friends to lovers romance has plenty of banter and playfulness, paired with heartfelt and angsty moments that give it depth.
The story follows Alex, an actor known for his role in a mega-popular TV show. After getting into trouble with the press, Alex is assigned a babysitter of sorts to make sure that he doesn’t tarnish the show’s reputation. His ADHD makes him more impulsive than most, and it only takes one misstep to ruin your career. Alex and Lauren’s relationship goes off track from the start – she overhears him calling her ridiculous, and he seems fixated on her appearance and personality. But as the two spend weeks and then months in each other’s company, they slowly become friends. Possibly more than friends. They’re both dealing with their own personal struggles, but the two connect in a way that they haven’t with anyone else – and that’s a surprise to them both.
While Spoiler Alert isn’t required reading prior to this, it will certainly enrich the experience. We got to know Alex quite a bit in that book, so I started off this one loving him. Perhaps that’s why I was willing to overlook some of his missteps at the start, but this is definitely a book where the central relationship evolves dramatically over time. The second half – for me – was much stronger than the first, once these two become true friends and great companions. The first half also isn’t very kind to Lauren’s appearance, with frequent references to her roundness and beak-like nose, as well as a focus on her lack of self-worth. It was off-putting, no doubt. Once the book gets a little further along, it’s easy to see that a lot of that was intentional, but it’s difficult to look past at the start. This is a true slow burn where the relationship feels much more like friendship until subtle moments of intimacy and attraction become more frequent. Those were some of my favorites part of the story, and I really did love the unique vibe. I was lucky enough to receive an early copy and am voluntarily leaving a review of this forced proximity romance.
Following Spoiler Alert, Olivia Dade returns with another utterly charming romantic comedy about a devil-may-care actor—who actually cares more than anyone knows—and the no-nonsense woman hired to keep him in line.
“An absolutely witty, swoon worthy behind the scenes romp! Delightful from beginning to end!”–Julie Murphy, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Dumplin’
Alexander Woodroe has it all. Charm. Sex appeal. Wealth. Fame. A starring role as Cupid on TV’s biggest show, Gods of the Gates. But the showrunners have wrecked his character, he’s dogged by old demons, and his post-show future remains uncertain. When all that reckless emotion explodes into a bar fight, the tabloids and public agree: his star is falling.
Enter Lauren Clegg, the former ER therapist hired to keep him in line. Compared to her previous work, watching over handsome but impulsive Alex shouldn’t be especially difficult. But the more time they spend together, the harder it gets to keep her professional remove and her heart intact, especially when she discovers the reasons behind his recklessness…not to mention his Cupid fanfiction habit.
When another scandal lands Alex in major hot water and costs Lauren her job, she’ll have to choose between protecting him and offering him what he really wants—her. But he’s determined to keep his improbably short, impossibly stubborn, and extremely endearing minder in his life any way he can. And on a road trip up the California coast together, he intends to show her exactly what a falling star will do to catch the woman he loves: anything at all.
Start the series today!
Olivia Dade bursts onto the scene in this delightfully fun romantic comedy set in the world of fanfiction, in which a devoted fan goes on an unexpected date with her celebrity crush, who’s secretly posting fanfiction of his own.
Marcus Caster-Rupp has a secret. The world may know him as Aeneas, star of the biggest show on television, but fanfiction readers call him something else: Book!AeneasWouldNever. Marcus gets out his frustrations with the show through anonymous stories about the internet’s favorite couple, Aeneas and Lavinia. But if anyone discovered his online persona, he’d be finished in Hollywood.
April Whittier has secrets of her own. A hardcore Lavinia fan, she’s long hidden her fanfic and cosplay hobbies from her “real life”—but not anymore. When she dares to post her latest costume creation on Twitter, her plus-size take goes viral. And when Marcus asks her out to spite her internet critics, truth officially becomes stranger than fanfiction.
On their date, Marcus quickly realizes he wants more from April than a one-time publicity stunt. But when he discovers she’s Unapologetic Lavinia Stan, his closest fandom friend, he has one more huge secret to keep from her.
With love and Marcus’s career on the line, can the two of them stop hiding once and for all, or will a match made in fandom end up prematurely cancelled?
Read my audiobook review here
About the Author:
Olivia Dade grew up an undeniable nerd, prone to ignoring the world around her as she read any book she could find. Her favorites, though, were always, always romances. As an adult, she earned an M.A. in American history and worked in a variety of jobs that required the donning of actual pants: Colonial Williamsburg interpreter, high school teacher, academic tutor, and (of course) librarian. Now, however, she has finally achieved her lifelong goal of wearing pajamas all day as a hermit-like writer and enthusiastic hag. She currently lives outside Stockholm with her patient Swedish husband, their whip-smart daughter, and the family’s ever-burgeoning collection of books.
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