Why did I want to read it?
It’s Courtney Milan! One of my favorite historical romance authors. And she’s writing contemporary new adult romance! I love her as an author because, for me, she always pushes the envelopes in the genre. Her historical romance novels are some of the most unique stories I’ve read in that genre and so I was excited to see what magic she weaves in the New Adult genre.
What worked for me?
This book! It’s like a punch to the gut for me, as what generally happens whenever I read a Courtney Milan book.
Our main characters, Blake and Tina, would seem, at the outset, cookie-cutter NA characters: Blake, the young, rich, incredibly handsome, and seriously smart hero, and Tina, smart, with an understated beauty, who’s financially struggling. But then you get Courtney Milan as your writer and you just know that these characters won’t act the way you expect them to and you’ll find them fascinating just the same.
Coming from the opposite sides of the tracks, so to speak, they enter each other’s orbits when the dust settles on a very heated debate during one of the classes that they attend together. They enter into an arrangement wherein they trade lives for a couple of weeks, each hoping that this would help them with their own issues. During their trade, they discover things about themselves and about each other. And while there is (a very strong) reluctance towards getting attached to the other, even in friendship only, especially for Tina, there’s just no taking themselves away from each other.
I just loved every single scene they were in together. You can see the wheels working in their heads, thinking and overthinking every step and every development, but at the same time, you can feel the emotions trying to emerge and being breathed into existence the more time they spend with each other. I love that they’re such layered characters, multi-dimensional in a way that feels real without ever being overly dramatic.
They have family issues but I swear, you haven’t read anything quite like it anywhere yet. It’s not the kinds of family conflicts where family equals evil villain. And in this regard, I love the characterizations of the secondary characters, Blake’s father, Tina’s parents, among others. You’ll appreciate how the author weaves it all together. I know I did.
And gosh, their chemistry! I enjoy tension in books especially when it’s written well and you can’t get wrong with a Courtney Milan-written kind of tension. Because there’s so much at stake, it makes it so intense as well.
What did not work for me?
Well, I’m not really a fan of the book cover.
My over-all take on it?
This was really a great start for Courtney Milan’s foray into contemporary romance. I was a little scared about how she would do in such a different genre but I have to say that my fear was clearly unfounded. Blake and Tina, in their genuineness, makes this a really wonderful read. I can’t wait to read more from the series.
Disclaimer: I received an eARC of this book from the author/publisher in exchange for an honest review. Yes, these are my honest and personal thoughts on this book.
Before she started writing books, Courtney experimented with numerous occupations. She has trained dogs, written legal briefs, sold newspaper subscriptions, and written computer programs. Having given up on actually being able to do any actual things, she’s taken to heart the axiom that “those who can’t, teach.” When she isn’t reading, writing, or sleeping, she can be found in the vicinity of a classroom.
Courtney loves hearing from readers. You can visit her on the web and find out more about her and her newest releases athttp://www.courtneymilan.com.
Connect with Courtney Milan:
More Courtney Milan on the blog:
Have you read Courtney Milan’s books? Would you trade lives with someone else? If you could, who would you choose?