Author: Christina Lauren
Publisher: Piatkus (UK)
Release Date: 5th December 2017
My Rating: 4 Stars
This was such a delight to read! This features a lot of people’s favourite fake marriage trope and it was so delicious to read! I’ve never read a Christina Lauren book before, but I certainly will be reading all I can get my hands on now!
Our character, Holland (quirky name – check!), was a real sweetheart. I think she worked because I know a lot of young adults will relate really strongly to her. She’s a couple of years postgrad, and has not been using her degree but instead working in a dead-end job. She studied Creative Writing but has had writer’s block since graduating and has a crippling fear that she’ll never be able to write something great. This was as much a story of Holland’s personal growth and self-worth as it was a love story and that really resonated with me.
Calvin was just everyone’s sexy musician dream come to life. He’s a soulful, sexy Irish guitar-player. Holland is magnetised by his talent and presence and they forge a relationship based on her belief and feeling in his music. Broadway antics, adorable gay uncles who love Holland dearly, the breakdown of toxic friendship and achievement of personal goals all ensue.
The only real critique I have is that there wasn’t a strong up-and-down dynamic to carry the story through – it mostly only worked and was carried by the cuteness of the characters and relationships. I usually expect more conflict and resolution to a romance, but the conflicts were very tame and easily resolved. Like I said before, it seems that the biggest source of conflict and arc to overcome was Holland’s lack of self belief. I could have used a touch more drama, is what I’m saying – you don’t usually marry a man you just met and have it work out neatly with very little to overcome (I wish it did – attractive stranger at the gym, I’m looking at you).
Anyway, I really enjoyed this – I laughed out loud, I was embarrassed by reading sexy bits at the gym, and I shed a little tear. It was great fun and I’m really looking forward to reading more from Christina Lauren.