The Bromance Book Club by Lyssa Kay Adams- I read this months ago and really liked it. But I didn’t take any notes and felt like I needed to reread it in order to write a mini review of it. It held up the second time around and actually this time I was less annoyed by some of the things I didn’t like the first read.
Here’s what worked for me: It is a marriage in trouble book, one of my favorite tropes. The dialogue is fast-paced and witty. I loved seeing the strong and supportive male friendships in this book. I thought it was appropriately funny and emotional. It is sports adjacent and wasn’t too heavy on sportsball. Thea and Gavin’s twin daughters were just the right amount of moppety for me and there was no forced drama involving the children. It hit all the right notes for me.
The things that didn’t work as well: Thea’s sister is really angry at Gavin. I wished that Thea would have not let that seep into her relationship so much, but I also understand why it did.
Thea has some issues with one of the other wives on the baseball wives. It had a medium amount of nuance, and I understood Thea’s feelings about it all. But I am pretty much over the usage of an “evil” woman as a plot point.
Lastly one of the issues between Thea and Gavin is that she’s been faking orgasms for three years and he didn’t notice. When he finds out, his pride is hurt and their marriage starts to unravel. The crux of it is that he isn’t paying attention to their relationship and there by not paying attention to any of her needs. And that part actually worked really well for me. What I take issue with is that once they reconnect and start dealing with their shit, the orgasms are back for Thea. In between my reads of this book, I listened to Come As You Are by Emily Nagoski and just once I wished for Thea to tell Gavin that orgasms are not the only goal of intercourse and that sex can still pleasurable if they don’t happen. But this is romancelandia and that’s not a thing characters talk about.
All said and done I still really liked this book. I thought the writing voice was fresh and very enjoyable. My quibbles were small and did not take away from my overall enjoyment of the book.
If you’ve been wanting this book but holding out because of the price point, maybe check Smexy next week for a giveaway :)
Eight Kisses: Eight All New Tales of Hanukkah Romance.
I read 6 out of 8 of the stories. One I didn’t read because it is historical and one I DNF because it was boring me. I think the authors put 3 second chance romance stories back to back and by the time the third one came around, I couldn’t keep the stories straight and was getting the characters confused. Overall I found the stories I did read to be very enjoyable and it was fantastic to read about people falling in love/connecting during Hanukkah.
I am going to put them in order of my favorites and say a little about each.
Michelle Mars – “Frisky Connections”– This one is centered on the hero and heroine meeting on a dating up. But they are both holding back information from each other. This was also the sexiest in the book. It was short but had me engaged from the beginning and I want to read more in this world. 4/5
Lynne Silver – “Rededication”– A not quite marriage in trouble, but a marriage that if it doesn’t do some course correction ASAP, it will be in big trouble. The heroine and hero are recent empty nesters who have been neglectful of their relationship. They work to bring it back on track. I really enjoyed this one. 4/5
Mindy Klasky – “Harmony Lights”– Abby, the heroine, returns home to help care for her mother over the holidays. She reconnects with her highschool boyfriend and finds out what went wrong in that relationship. 3.5/5
Erin Eisenberg – “Hanukkah Kisses”– The heroine is back home for the holidays. She reconnects with the boy who did her wrong in high school. Of the three second chance romances, this was my favorite. It just felt like the chemistry was a little stronger in this one. 3/5
Rose Grey – “Can’t Help Falling”– The heroine and hero are both over 60. That was a fantastic surprise. The heroine is a widower and trying to discover who she is. The hero is in town to handle arrangements for a relative that passed. The hero in this is black and made some statements about race and acceptance that in this short of a story felt a little out of place because there wasn’t the opportunity to really delve into them.This one was okay but was lacking some depth, as can happen with a novella/short story. 3/5
JT Silver – “Love and Latkes”– A second chance at love where the heroine is actively grieving the loss of her mother and reconnects with her long time neighbor. This one was cute but I wasn’t left feeling like I needed more when I finished reading it. It also had a few moments where it was telling me it was funny, but I didn’t find it funny. 2.75/5
Lavinia Klein – “Bubbe Linda’s Menorah” – DNF
Lori Ann Bailey – “A Highlander for Hanukkah”– DNR
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