Review: If You Ask Me by Libby Hubscher

I don’t know what drew me to this book first, the hot fireman or the protagonist having a massive public meltdown! It’s like my dream some times to just have a complete meltdown where I give zero f*cks and just go off and still be able to keep my job and relationship but yet I have something to laugh about later. Am I right people? Basically I wish my life was a movie or a story some times where I could get away with that. Like go full on Waiting to Exhale and burn my ex’s stuff and still find love—that’s exactly what this book promises—literally!

I was instantly drawn to this one for that very reason. I felt like I could live vicariously through Violet’s life and get a few laughs. I had this one on my radar very early on. I couldn’t wait to check it out and read a fun little romantic comedy. This one sounded like a fun little rom com and that it would be just what I needed going into the early spring.

The cover promises such a cute little story and that alone made it seem like it was going to be a great romantic comedy with a neat little HEA in the works. What I was not prepared for was how much this book would get me in the feels! I wasn’t prepared for the more serious content in this one. Sure it had it’s romantic parts and it’s own little HEA but there was a lot of emotion in this one too. So if you are looking for romantic fluff this one isn’t that, it has more substance to it than I originally anticipated.

Summary

When an advice columnist’s picture-perfect life implodes, she opts to go rogue in this hilarious, heartwarming romance from the author of Meet Me in Paradise.

Violet Covington pens Dear Sweetie, the most popular advice column in the state of North Carolina. She has an answer for how to politely handle any difficult situation…until she discovers her husband, Sam, has been cheating on her. Furious and out of sensible solutions, Violet leaves her filter at the door and turns to her column to air her own frustrations. The new, brutally honest Dear Sweetie goes viral, sending more shock waves through Violet’s life. When she burns Sam’s belongings in a front-yard, late-night bonfire, a smoking-hot firefighter named Dez shows up to douse the flames, and an unexpected fling quickly shows potential to become something longer lasting.

A lot of people want to see the old polished Violet return—including her boss, who finds her unpredictability hard to manage, and Sam, who’s begging for another chance. But Dez appreciates Violet just the way she is—in fact, he can’t get enough of her. The right answers don’t come easily when Violet finds herself at her own personal crossroads. But maybe, by getting real, Violet can write her own happy ending. (summary from Goodreads)

Review

This one was a surprising read for me. went into it thinking I would be getting one thing, but then ended up getting something else. It was ok, but not what I was expecting to read. Ok yes, in the summary it was clear that Violet’s marriage was in shambles with her husband cheating on her and yes I can fully understand why she burned her husband’s things etc. But there was something more intense about this book that the summary hinted at. This book had a lot to unpack emotionally and honestly more than I was ready for. This one covered a range of topics, divorce, miscarriages, cheating, mental health, addiction. I was ready for the divorce and cheating but not the other things. I mean in general, it’s great that these topics are making their way into mainstream literature but at the same time it felt unexpected for me as this one sounded more like a rom-com to me based on the cover and summary.

There were times that I struggled with how Violet responded to some of the conflicts within the story. I don’t know but I just never connected with her in the way that I had hoped or anticipated to. Like at first things started out fun and light and then quickly turned much more emotional and I didn’t feel like I was really connected to Violet enough for it to happen as quick as it did. At times this was a fun story and Violet a fun character but overall I felt a little overwhelmed at the emotional content and Violet’s character in general. I wanted to love her but I just didn’t. I appreciated that the author added a warning label about triggers at the beginning of this book but ultimately I still felt overwhelmed by the emotions in this one.

What I did love though was Dez the love interest. I mean, I am a little partial since my own husband’s nickname is Dez, I thought he was a great love interest and I just instantly wanted to know more about him. I loved that he saw through Violet’s issues and still wanted to love her and support her. Dez is also no stranger to grief and I think that made him and Violet a great pair. He was clearly there for all the messy and was happy to be there for her and through it all. For me Dez saved the story earning a 3 star review from me. Maybe if I was in a better frame of mind I would have liked this one better but in the end it came in as just ok for me which made me so sad because I really had high hopes for this one and was looking forward to it for so long but it just didn’t meet my expectations.

Book Info and Rating

Format: 368 pages, paperback

Publication: March 8th 2022 by Berkley Books

ISBN: 9780593199442

Free review copy provided by publisher, Berkley, in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own and in no way influenced.

Rating: 3 stars

Genre: romance, contempo lit, chick lit

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