Book Review

ARC Book Review: Isn’t It Bromantic? (Bromance Book Club #4) by Lyssa Kay Adams

Rating: ☆☆☆☆☆
Audience: Contemporary Romance
Length: 352 pages
Author: Lyssa Kay Adams
Publisher: Berkley
Release Date: July 20th, 2021
Image & Other Reviews on: Goodreads

BOOK SUMMARY:

With his passion for romance novels, it was only a matter of time before Vlad took up the pen to write a novel the Bromance Book Club would swoon over.

Elena Konnikova has lived her entire adult life in the shadows. As the daughter of a Russian journalist who mysteriously disappeared after speaking out against government corruption, she escaped danger the only way she knew how. She agreed to marry her childhood friend, Vladimir, and move to the United States, where he is a professional hockey player in Nashville.

Vlad, aka The Russian, thought he could be content with his marriage of convenience. But after four years, it’s become too difficult to continue in a one-sided relationship. He joined the Bromance Book Club to learn how to make his wife love him, but all he’s learned is that he deserves more. He’s ready to create his own sweeping romance–both on and off the page.

The Bros are unwilling to let Vlad forgo true love–and this time they’re not operating solo. They join forces with Vlad’s senior citizen neighbors, a group of meddling widows who call themselves The Loners. Just when things finally look promising, the danger from Elena’s past life intrudes, and the book club will face their first-ever life-or-death grand gesture as they race to a happy ever after.

Thank you to the publisher and Netgalley for an eARC in exchange for a review. All opinions are my own!

BEST OF THE SERIES.

Yup. I said it. I stand by it. I LOVED THIS ONE SO MUCH.

Sweet soul Vlad had my heart wrapped around his finger. He’s my favorite. I love him so much. Bearing his soul over and over and over again. Leaning on his friends, renewing his love, and finding his voice. IT WAS ALL AMAZING. Vlad is an unconventional hero and underneath that intimidating, hockey player, exterior is a smushy cinnamon roll.

Marriage of convenience might be one of my favorite tropes. I want all of the books with this plot line because I am enamored. This was no exception. Getting a bit of childhood friends, and a few other tropes that make me weak and I was instantly in love.

Elena hurt me sometimes. I just wanted her to see herself the way Vlad does!! But this only racketed up the pure angst between them. There was just the right amount of steam to match this story and it fit in beautifully with the rekindling of their love. Elena and Vlad has so much growth as individual characters.

The side characters y’all. Oh my gosh, couldn’t get enough. I love every moment that the entire Bromance Book Club is together. The way they have bonded and the deep friendships that have aligned make me melt. I love the communication and power of loyal friends. Vlad’s other set of friends, a group of ladies, The Loners, also had me smitten. I loved the clash and meeting of the minds whenever everyone was together. This whole cast makes this book.

I loved this. I hope to goodness there’s another book. I don’t want this series to end!

Also lowkey, I want to go make all of the Russian dishes in this book. They sounded mouth-watering delicious!

Overall audience notes:

  • Contemporary romance
  • Language: some
  • Romance: kisses to mild open door scenes
  • Violence: car wreck, physical altercation
  • Trigger/Content Warnings: kidnapping, loss of a parent, severe sports injury, mentions and discussion of a sex trafficking ring

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Book Review

ARC Book Review: Crazy Stupid Bromance (Bromance Book Club #3) by Lyssa Kay Adams

Rating: ☆☆☆☆
Audience: Contemporary Romance
Length: 352 pages
Author: Lyssa Kay Adams
Publisher: Berkley
Release Date: October 27th, 2020
Image & Other Reviews on: Goodreads

BOOK SUMMARY:

A hacktivist and a cat café owner decode the friend zone in this romantic comedy from the author of Undercover Bromance.

Alexis Carlisle and her cat café, ToeBeans, have shot to fame after she came forward as a victim of a celebrity chef’s sexual harassment. When a new customer approaches to confide in her, the last thing Alexis expects is for the woman to claim they’re sisters. Unsure what to do, Alexis turns to the only man she trusts—her best friend, Noah Logan.

Computer genius Noah left his rebellious teenage hacker past behind to become a computer security expert. Now he only uses his old skills for the right cause. But Noah’s got a secret: He’s madly in love with Alexis. When she asks for his help, he wonders if the timing will ever be right to confess his crush.

Noah’s pals in The Bromance Book Club are more than willing to share their beloved “manuals” to help him go from bud to boyfriend. But he must decide if telling the truth is worth risking the best friendship he’s ever had. 

Thank you to the publisher and Netgalley for the eARC. All opinions are my own.

DEVOURED THIS.

Ahhhh, another good installment y’all. I love how the Bromance Book Club combines laugh out loud moments with critically important topics as well.

Hello, way super smitten with Noah here. Once again, anther love interest that I adore. Such a tough guy with an absolutely soft soul. I adored his dynamic with Alexis and trying to make sure he was the best he could be for her, and being what she needed when she needed it. Add in the *helpfulness* of his friends and its a recipe for some mistakes, and beautiful growth moments.

I only struggled with one decision. And I can’t speak to it because it would be a major spoiler, but I’m curious what others will think. I understood the affect it was meant to have on the reader, I just don’t know if it was necessary? I DON’T KNOW. I’m conflicted. The theme of forgiveness was huge in this and I think that’s why it’s swayed me to being more okay with it the longer I’ve thought about it. Either way you look at it, it was a tough choice.

Alexis was a strong main character. Her bravery to face down the Karen’s and finding her power again was stunning. I was hoping to see her grasp that SHE mattered too, and I really saw those changes by the end. Love some character growth from both Alexis and Noah. Put them together was fireworks. They were a match. No other way to look at it.

Overall audience notes:

  • Contemporary romance
  • Language: strong and frequent
  • Romance: kisses / heated make-outs; a handful of open-door scenes
  • Trigger warnings: remembering sexual assaults, loss of a parent, grief

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Book Review

ARC Book Review: Undercover Bromance (Bromance Book Club #2) by Lyssa Kay Adams

Rating: ☆☆☆☆ 1/2
Audience: Contemporary romance
Length: 320 pages
Author: Lyssa Kay Adams
Publisher: Berkley
Release Date: March 10th, 2020
Image & Other Reviews on: Goodreads

BOOK SUMMARY:

Braden Mack thinks reading romance novels makes him an expert in love, but he’ll soon discover that real life is better than fiction.

Liv Papandreas has a dream job as a sous chef at Nashville’s hottest restaurant. Too bad the celebrity chef owner is less than charming behind kitchen doors. After she catches him harassing a young hostess, she confronts him and gets fired. Liv vows revenge, but she’ll need assistance to take on the powerful chef.

Unfortunately, that means turning to Braden Mack. When Liv’s blackballed from the restaurant scene, the charismatic nightclub entrepreneur offers to help expose her ex-boss, but she is suspicious of his motives. He’ll need to call in reinforcements: the Bromance Book Club.

Inspired by the romantic suspense novel they’re reading, the book club assist Liv in setting up a sting operation to take down the chef. But they’re just as eager to help Mack figure out the way to Liv’s heart… even while she’s determined to squelch the sparks between them before she gets burned.

Thank you to the publisher and Netgalley for an eARC. All opinions are my own!

I JUST LOVED THIS.

Okay. It’s official. I loved this more than The Bromance Book Club. While I appreciated and adored that it was about a married couple, Undercover Bromance brought in my favorite trope, enemies to lovers, to make this a stellar read.

I am TOTALLY SMITTEN WITH BRADEN MACK. Oh my goodness. I fell in love with him over this book in more ways than one. I couldn’t get enough of his tougher exterior, but softest soul. And can we all applaud the fact that men express real feelings in this series? Because I am here for it. I love how Mack conquered his past and fought for his love. He was incredibly sweet and his perseverance with Liv is admirable. I’m so glad we got a sequel with him because I will be gushing for days.

The way the book club helps Mack throughout this story made me smile and want to group hug all of them too [who doesn’t?]. I love their friendship with each other and feel like the romance books have helped them all explore their own softer sides and be able to talk to one another. I love a good gal pal friendship, but seeing all of these guys together is one of my favorite aspects of this series.

Undercover Bromance covers a really relevant and serious topic [sexual assault, specifically in the work place]. This was a hard subject to read about. I thought it was well put together in the story and while broaching a tough theme it didn’t overshadow the romance. It was great to see so many men in this story stand up for women and have constructive discussions.

I absolutely was all over the chemistry between Liv and Mack. It was a lightening storm out there whenever they were near each other. The banter, flirtations, steam, honest moments, tender moments. Oh my, this book had it all. Every single thing I could ask for when looking for a memorable romance. My only 1/2 star deduction was from Liv. Occasionally I didn’t love her character. She did have a solid arc over the course of the story and once she started apologizing I was way more on her side.

There was only one added scene from a romance novel. Unlike The Bromance Book Club, where a few chapters were dedicated to a romance novel within the book, Undercover Bromance only had a few paragraphs one time. I looooove this change and thought it kept the pace and the story smooth. Nothing felt broken up as the POV switched back and forth between Liv and Braden. And can we talk about that epilogue? Because it was adorable and I live for happy ever afters.

Overall audience notes:

  • Contemporary romance
  • Language: a lot of strong language throughout
  • Romance: kisses, passionate make-outs, a few detailed love scenes
  • Violence: physical
  • Trigger warnings: sexual assault [MC walks in on it happening; discussed throughout as one of the main themes of the story; hearing survivor stories]; domestic abuse [MC recounts past of abusive father]

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