Audience: Contemporary Romance
Length: 352 pages
Author: Emily Wibberley and Austin Siegemund-Broka
Publisher: Berkley Books
Release Date: January 24th, 2023
Image & Other Reviews on: Goodreads
When a couple starts to feel like they’re married to a stranger, a flirtatious game of pretend becomes the spark they need to reignite their relationship.
Eliza and Graham are anticipating an anything-but-sexy, weeklong getaway to celebrate their five-year anniversary. Nestled on the Northern California coastline, the resort prides itself on being a destination for those in love and those looking to find it. For Eliza and Graham, it might as well be a vacation with a roommate.
When a well-meaning guest mistakes Eliza and Graham for being single and introduces them at the hotel bar, they don’t correct him. Suddenly, they’re pretending to be perfect strangers and it’s unexpectedly…fun? Eliza and Graham find themselves flirting like it’s their first date, and waiting with butterflies in their stomach for the other to text back.
Everyone at the retreat can sense the electric chemistry between Eliza and Graham’s alter egos. But when their scintillating game of roleplaying ends, will they still feel the heat?
Thank you to Berkley Romance for the eARC.
You know what got me off on the perfect foot with this book? That Graham and Eliza weren’t two bitter, mean characters where you didn’t even want to cheer them on to fix their marriage. These two LOVE each other and WANT deeply to make things work and that made me love them immediately and want the best for them.
I thought it was a fun idea to kind of “role play” to get out of their own way. It led to some good banter and to some moments that truths could be revealed. For a book set at only a resort I thought there were ample opportunities for activities that didn’t feel forced and allowed major character development.
Side note to David? CAN HE HAVE HIS OWN BOOK PLEASE? I loved him so much and how good of a friend he was! He was the perfect side character touch that brought some lightness and helped Graham by being someone he could talk too.
Eliza took the most time to really break down some barriers. What I loved though is that Graham talked and approached things with such love. There was no condemning and call outs. He voiced his thoughts and Eliza started to truly reflect on how she handles conflict and tough situations. Same went for Graham’s growth. Once Eliza was aware of what was happening for him, she went out of her way to make obvious remarks to build his confidence. I LOVE THAT SO MUCH.
There’s a beautiful focus on the fact marriages aren’t perfect, but two people who want badly enough to try and work together and stay open to communicating can make it perfect. I loved many of the dialogue surrounding communication and asking questions and finding new ways to keep loving the person that changes over time with you.
This is there best adult book yet.
Overall audience notes:
- Contemporary Romance
- Language: a little
- Romance: two brief open; low explicit
- Trigger/Content Warnings: strained familial relations