You all know how much I love a great rom-com right?! Whether it’s a movie, tv show, or book, I am always down for romantic comedies. If you are a fan of the genre, you will also know that the market is full of great rom-coms and I feel like there is always a hot new release just begging for me to read it. It is always so hard for me to pick which ones I want to read first.
So how do I decide which ones to pick? Sometimes it’s by feel and if I have openings on my calendar, other times I have to choose based on my favorite romantic comedy troupe (enemies to lovers). When this book came up for review that was what steered me in this direction. I love enemies to lovers because I think it sparks electric chemistry between the characters, so it’s always a hard troupe for me to pass on.
This one had the extra element of house fixer-upper added to the mix and of course I love home improvement shows so this book hit a couple of high notes for me just based on the description. I also know that this is Sophie Sullivan’s sophomore novel, while I haven’t read her first book I know a lot of others who did and all raved about her wit and storytelling so I jumped at the chance to read this one!
Most Anticipated for 2022 by: PopSugar * Buzzfeed * USA Today
Enemies-to-lovers meets HGTV in this frothy, effervescent romantic comedy from Sophie Sullivan, author of Ten Rules for Faking It.
Interior Design School? Check. Cute house to fix up? Check.
Sexy, grumpy neighbor who is going to get in the way of your plans? Check. Unfortunately.
Grace Travis has it all figured out. In between finishing school and working a million odd jobs, she’ll get her degree and her dream job. Most importantly, she’ll have a place to belong, something her harsh mother could never make. When an opportunity to fix up—and live in—a little house on the beach comes along, Grace is all in. Until her biggest roadblock moves in next door.
Noah Jansen knows how to make a deal. As a real estate developer, he knows when he’s found something special. Something he could even call home. Provided he can expand by taking over the house next door–the house with the combative and beautiful woman living in it.
With the rules for being neighborly going out the window, Grace and Noah are in an all-out feud. But sometimes, your nemesis can show you that home is always where the heart is.
“This is a novel you’ll want to read over and over again.” – USA Today (summary from Goodreads)
I felt like this one was going to be more enemies to lovers, and it was that but only at the basic level. This one felt more like a sunshine and the grump troupe to me. Grace is vibrant and energetic while Noah is basically a grumpy Gus about everything— I loved this troupe more than I was expecting. The novel started off strong for me with lots to giggle about and enjoy. Grace was a wonderful character and I loved how she came from humble/wrong side of the track beginnings. She worked hard to achieve her dreams and her future and never shied away from hard work or a challenge. I loved her character and totally connected with her very early on in the book. Noah was the complete opposite of Grace in some ways. He came from money and basically thinks he can throw money at Grace to make her sell her property to him. But he has this other redeeming side to him that I loved. He wants to make his own way in his world free from his family influence etc. I appreciated that about him and I found that clearly opposites attract in this one! Grace and Noah together had outstanding chemistry together.
The story overall flowed pretty well but I did feel like it lost some momentum in the middle. Overall it was a super cute story and had a lot of little giggles but the middle just slowed down a bit for me and I am not really sure why, I just felt like it needed a little something more to keep it moving along. The beginning and end were paced well, it was just something in the middle felt lacking. I think a lot of people go into rom-coms expecting to read more of a literary rom-com meaning there is a lot of character development and flushed out backstory etc but often in romances (comedy or otherwise) the focus is on the romance story rather than on the characters themselves. This one is similar in that regard. The characters a relatable and have some great qualities but we don’t really get into lengthy and detailed backstories and MAJOR character development. What we do get to see though it the meet cute, the attraction and chemistry between the characters that makes up the love story.
Stories like this are so great for quick reading whether it’s by the pool or on a plane to your vacation destination. It’s a quick, easy read that will give you some laughs, characters to enjoy and some funny scenarios to enjoy plus a HEA! For me that’s all I was looking for, something fun, happy, and funny and that is exactly what I got in this one. If you love romantic comedies this is a great one to pick up, plus it’s been on all the ‘most anticipated’ lists for this year and for good reason! It’s a solid, well written, charming romance that I throughly enjoyed!
Book Info and Rating
Format: 352 pages, paperback
Published: January 18 2022 by St Martin’s Griffin
ISBN: 9781250624185 (ISBN10: 120624185)
Free review copy provided by publisher, St Martin’s Griffin, in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own and in no way influenced.
Rating: 4 stars
Genre: romance, rom-com