Mini-reviews of The Girl Next Door, Conventionally Yours, You Should See Me in a Crown and Wrong Bed, Right Brother. So that's four contemporary romances: two f/f, one m/m and one f/m.
Rating refresher! Categories are based on whether or not we recommend them to fellow readers - DNF (Did Not Finish), Pass, YMMV (Your Mileage May Vary), Read it Eventually, Read it Soon.
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The Girl Next Door, by Chelsea M. Cameron
Suzanne says: YMMV
This was fine. I don't have anything negative to say, but I also can't yell about it from the rooftops and tell everyone to read it. I think Cameron's writing may just not work for me. It doesn't seem to elicit an emotional response and I'm not sure how to pin that down.
Content Warnings: grief, recent passing of a partner
Suzanne read this audiobook on Hoopla thanks to her library.
Conventionally Yours, by Annabeth Albert
Suzanne says: Read it Eventually
I had some issues with the pacing of Conventionally Yours, but I enjoyed it anyway. Perhaps because none of the cons happened in person this year it was something of a surreal experience reading this long road trip and then the gaming convention. People were in line together! Shaking hands after matches! Eek. I do think you'll like the story better if you've played Magic: The Gathering, but if you're a gaming nerd you'll be happy either way. I think non-gamers might get sick of the actual gaming stuff, but maybe not!
The romance starts as enemies-to-lovers but morphs quickly into something else as the characters realize they've been misinterpreting each other for years and basing their perceptions on non-facts. Overall a recommended new adult read with an inclusive supporting cast.
Content Warnings: some prejudice and bias about neurodivergent MC, parents kicked out one MC for being gay, homophobia, threats of violence re: gaming, food insecurity
Suzanne borrowed this audiobook on Hoopla courtesy of her library.
Wrong Bed, Right Brother, by Rebecca Brooks
Suzanne says: Read it Eventually
Rebecca Brooks has written another tropey, steamy romance, this one reminiscent of the things I loved about the first in the series. That one plays on the roommate and best-friend's older sibling tropes, but this is a slightly more complicated setup.
What happens when you accidentally make out with the wrong guy in the dark of night? And he's your crush/coworker's twin brother? And you've disliked each other for years? And the brothers are moving across the country in a month?
The physical aspect of Amanda and Noah's relationship picks up quickly, but their emotional connection is a little uneven. This is one of those books where I think some readers won't quite buy their HEA given the short term nature of their relationship and a little more telling than showing on the part of the author.
However, I've liked this series and I like the author's writing style, so I just sailed on by the nitpicks.
If you like quick tropey reads, this is worth your time.
Suzanne received a digital copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
You Should See Me in a Crown, by Leah Johnson
Suzanne says: Read it Soon
My review on Goodreads is: "This book is like 15 heart emojis and some happy crying." You Should See Me in a Crown is a true rom-com and I adored it. Johnson doesn't pretend that racism and homophobia don't exist and Black, closeted lesbian Liz deals with both, but the overall tone of the book is hope and sunshine. Based on this book, I will read anything Johnson writes.
As for the audiobook, it's all from Liz's POV and the narrator, Alaska Jackson, did a great job.
Content Warnings: forced outing, homophobia and racism
Suzanne borrowed this audiobook on Hoopla thanks to her library.
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