I received this book for free from the publisher or author in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
Series: The Big V #1
Published by Swoon Romance on April 21st 2015
Genres: Adult fiction, Contemporary, Romance
Source: ARC from publisher
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Lyssa Bates doesn’t need a man. Not when the world is fully-stocked with double A batteries (long-lasting) and a wide array of options in Amazon’s health and sexual wellness category. Thank the gods of Internet ordering.
After yet another failed relationship, the twenty-six-year-old investment analyst is convinced that real guys aren’t ever going to live up to her expectations—so why should she bother with them when the only thing standing between her and her next mind-blowing O is the case in which she keeps Vibrizzio? Yep. She gave it a name. An Italian name!
She’s determined to keep her dating life purely electronic...though she occasionally fantasizes about Hayden King, the delicious new associate she just got partnered with at work.
While Lyssa manages her romantic risks by deleting men from of the equation, the ever-charming Hayden protects his heart by diversifying his love life across multiple women.
As the two young professionals travel together around the country for business, their flirty working relationship develops into a close friendship that hurtles toward something more.
Between hot tub confessions in Baltimore, an accidental kiss in Dallas, and an all-nighter in Chicago, Hayden proves himself to be better than any fantasy, and Vibrizzio's days may finally be numbered.
I really liked this. I liked the realness—it’s pretty much the whole girl-gets-player-to-settle-down-with-her trope (as Lyssa even admits) but it just felt more real, mostly due to Hayden. Although certain aspects could be downright silly (Lyssa’s obsession with Double A), the realism of her relationship with Hayden really kept my interest.
It’s just a good read. It really is. I finished it very quickly (one day). Lyssa’s great (if obsessed), Hayden’s good (a good person, good for Lyssa, etc.), and the other characters really bring life to the story. They’re not just background. It becomes clear how Lyssa’s friends and family have shaped and continue to shape her. I look forward to her everyday interactions because I know she’s going to spice them up somehow. She’s just a fun girl.
Hayden seems like the typical player who’s just having flings with women left and right so he doesn’t have to worry about the heartbreak that comes with a serious relationship. But he really is more than that. He has goals for his future and is good at his job. He is caring. Most of all, he is not perfect in any way (except maybe looks). He’s fantastic at noticing things, but has slip-ups. He comes off as a jerk at first, and still sometimes is even when you get to know him. He needs someone in his life. And, well, so does Lyssa. She’s the one he comes to rely on. And funnily enough, it looks as if the roles are reversed—he relies on her more than she relies on him. She has a great group of friends and can get dates, even if they don’t turn out perfect. Maybe her family isn’t all wonderful, but no one’s is. We don’t get to see much of Hayden’s, but it’s still clear that he needs her, so they end up benefiting each other. It works out.
I will say that while the first half of the book was more fun (and it was difficult to tell where it was going), the second half got more…serious. As important life things were figured out, as things with Hayden took several different turns, gone was the light-hearted Lyssa who ended up having to choose between her boyfriend and Double A. Suddenly a lot more was at stake. It was not as easy a read, but it was a more fulfilling one, and honestly, the end was so iffy that I wasn’t sure what was going to happen (this is a good thing). View Spoiler »but it ended up being really romantic and perfect « Hide Spoiler
The settings really played a great part in the story too. All the different places gave variety to their interactions and presented opportunities for them to get to know each other. My favorite was the farm of the endearing old farm lady/investor. That farm has good memories. I like books with integral settings.
Basically, this book was wonderful. It was a fast and engaging read. The characters were all fantastic. The story was pretty cliché but it had quite enough spice for me to love it anyway. Wow, okay, I was originally going to give this 4 stars, but it’s looking more like 5 now.
reaction upon finishing
That’s hot. Love it.
this book in one word