I haven’t devoured a book this quickly in a long time, so that deserves a full 5-star rating… even if there were a few things I would’ve changed. It’s the CHEMISTRY between these characters that seals the deal; from the moment they met, I could feel that ZAP of connection, and I was reminded why I’ve always loved Layne’s work. It’s playful, banter-filled, and entirely bingeable, with classic rom com tropes that are twisted in a fresh and different way. This felt like the return of Layne’s old style combined with something new – it’s got some spice, it’s light and easy, it’s hiding a deeper story underneath the banter. And did I mention that chemistry? We only get the heroine’s perspective, but I could feel the sparks flying. These two total opposites complement each other perfectly, and the solid, steady hero is exactly what our commitment-phobic heroine needs in her life.
The story follows Mac, a woman who didn’t have the best role models growing up. She was raised by a single mom who went from one man to the next, so Mac is wary of love and relationships. When Mac’s date is a no-show, she’s left swiping through a dating app while alone at a bar – ready to move on to the next guy as soon as the last one fell through. Looking up from her phone, Mac is mortified to discover that the guy sitting next to her is the one she just rejected on the dating app… and he knows it. Thomas is SO not Mac’s type – he’s way too preppy and polished – but the interaction that follows leaves Mac questioning herself. And when Mac runs into Thomas again, it’s impossible to deny that she just might have palpable chemistry with him.
I went into this completely blind, so that made Mac and Thomas’ run-ins all the more fun. I loved all of the little surprises, and their chemistry was GREAT. Layne is such a pro at writing attraction – and there were so many moments that showcased that talent. That’s really the best part of the book; Mac and Thomas navigating their ever-changing relationship while Mac tries to run every time Thomas starts to get under her skin. Yeah, it was a little frustrating that she was so commitment-phobic, but it was also a fresh take on the trope. It’s unusual to see an unabashedly sexual, commitment-adverse heroine paired with a relationship guy, and that made for some interesting friction. The book definitely could’ve been longer – I think another 50 pages would’ve made it something really special – but I also liked the bingeable quality. I easily read it in one sitting and was eager to see how things played out. This is a win in that area for sure.
I will say that there were more typos than I anticipated; there’s literally a sentence that reads: “His silver eyes hold my eyes and nods once.” That wasn’t the only completely indecipherable sentence either. I’m not usually someone who is bothered by typos, but they were noticeable here and unwelcome in a book this expensive. But that’s my only major complaint; every other gripe pales in comparison to the reading experience. I’m happy to round up my rating, because this was pretty great overall.
They have to stop meeting like this.
After a disastrous meet-cute turns into repeated meetings, a flighty free-spirit and a stodgy rule-follower come to realize that one they can’t get away from … is the one they can’t live without.
Mackenzie ‘Mac’ Austin just wants what any modern, commitment-phobic woman in New York wants: a no-strings-attached hook-up, steamy enough to brag about over mimosas the next morning. What she doesn’twant is her dating app’s latest suggestion: preppy, corporate Thomas Decker. So, obviously, she rejects the guy without a second thought. There’s just one snag: he’s sitting next to her, so he witnessed her do it. And now he’s calling her out.
After the initial embarrassment, Mac is determined not to let it bother her, but Fate has other plans – and Thomas isn’t going anywhere. First, he pops up as her new boss. And then he reappears as her best friend’s soon-to-be brother-in-law.
As the not-so meet cutes add up, Mac is sure that uptight Thomas is the last man that a free-spirit like her should want. Only the more time she spends with him, the more Mac realizes that the man she can’t get away from has become the same one that she wants to keep close…
About the Author:
“Escapist and aspirational, [with] sparkling dialog and deeply emotional moments.” —Publishers Weekly
“[A] powerhouse romance Author.” —PopSugar
Featured in Oprah Magazine and PopSugar, Lauren Layne books have sold millions of copies worldwide. Snappy banter, sexual tension, and a fairy-tale happy ending are a hallmark of the Lauren Layne brand. Library Journal has described Lauren’s work as “exceptional,” and the books have been described by USA TODAY as “romantic comedy at its finest.”
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