Tuesday, October 12, 2021

Boyfriend by Sarina Bowen - ARC Review & Release Blitz

The hottest player on the Moo U hockey team hangs a flyer on the bulletin board, and I am spellbound:


Rent a boyfriend for the holiday. For $25, I will be your Thanksgiving date. I will talk hockey with your dad. I will bring your mother flowers. I will be polite, and wear a nicely ironed shirt…

Now everyone knows it’s a bad idea to introduce your long-time crush to your messed-up family. But I really do need a date for Thanksgiving, even if I’m not willing to say why. So I tear his phone number off of that flyer… and accidentally entangle our star defenseman in a ruse that neither of us can easily unwind.

Because Weston's family is even nuttier than mine. He needs a date, too, for the most uncomfortable holiday engagement party ever thrown.

There will be hors d'oeuvre. There will be faked PDA. And there will be pro-level awkwardness…

Boyfriend is a full-length stand-alone romance for Weston and Abbi!

When I hear Sarina Bowen has a new book I immediately think, " I NEED that!!!!" and Boyfriend was no exception. This book made me smile and had me sighing. I was captivated from the first moment it started-and I did NOT want it to end.

I loved Abbi. She is someone who is smart, clever and so hard working. Her determination is admirable. I would absolutely be friends with Abbi. Emma Wilder truly brought her to life for me! She had her personality down to a T.

Weston, oh my sweet Weston. I fell for him hard and fast. He made my heart hurt with some of his family drama and how he was handling it. But his caring streak is a mile wide and I just loved that. I loved watching him fall for Abbi!! I may have rewound a certain line a few times to hear Jason Clarke say sweetheart :) But he was PERFECT to portray Weston.

I love how these two meet. I love their connection, how they grow together. There is one scene between them that definitely made me smile because Weston treats Abbi exactly how my husband would treat me. These two characters are so relatable you can't help but love them.

The supporting cast of characters here are great. I love the hockey team. There were people I didn't like...but those are people I shouldn't have liked lol. I wasn't kidding when I said I was captivated from the moment I started this book. These characters and this setting just sucked me right in. The pacing moved just right.

This is a book I know I'll come back to!! The narration was PERFECTION and I can't recommend this book highly enough!! Get your copy today!!!

I don't think there is anyone who can't relate to difficult family holidays or difficult family interactions, even people who have great families.

So, Weston and Abbi's issues with their families that result in them being willing to both hire a date (Abbi) and be willing to do pretty much anything to avoid family gatherings (Weston) are both instantly relatable and an excellent plot line to explore.

I loved their connection, their friendship and their attraction to one another. They were both not only believable as people, and as a couple, but also engaging alone. And funny. There are some definite lines in this book that had me laughing. But, there are also a lot of lines and scenes that had me swooning.

I am sometimes reluctant to read books where the characters are in college, as they can be (in my opinion) a little superficial as the characters are all in their early 20s...not so with this one. If you enjoy a great romance with characters you enjoy and relate to, this book is for you.

I enjoyed and recommend this title.

Buy This Book!

I wonder what Abbi is like. It doesn’t matter very much, of course. I haven’t agreed to marry her. It’s just one day of my life. And people fascinate me, so even if Abbi’s family is irritating as fuck, I probably won’t take it personally.

But I have a good feeling about Abbi herself. She’s local, which is interesting. Vermonters are pretty cool. They have a rugged mentality, and they rarely complain. And they’re usually hockey fans. What’s not to like about that?

The door opens, and I immediately lose my train of thought. I’m blinking at a pretty blond woman with shoulder-length hair. My first reaction is all hell yes and thank you, Jesus

Then I realize this is not just any woman. It’s the hot waitress from The Biscuit in the Basket. The one who remembers every order without writing it down. The one who always seems to know when we need something more, or when it’s time to drop the check.

The one with the kissable ivory neck and gray eyes that always make me a little stupid. I’ve never asked her out, because it’s rude to hit on a girl who’s just trying to get through her shift at work. But man, I’d like to. 

“Hi,” she says, frowning at me. “Wow. You’re wearing a tie.”

“Too much?” I ask, my hand flying to the knot of silk at my throat. “I could lose the tie.” And, heck, why stop there? If she asked me to lose my trousers, I’d do it. Anything for you, honey.

“No, you look very respectful. Thank you for doing this.”

I blink slowly. I can’t believe my luck. She’s my date? “You work at The Biscuit in the Basket,” I say stupidly. “But your name tag says Gail.”

She smiles. “That’s right. The lazy manager put the wrong name on it, and then wouldn’t redo it for me. But I’m glad you can recognize me without the uniform.”

“Well, sure. You look nice. Your hair is different. Fluffier. Wait. Is fluffy a good thing?” I babble.

She laughs suddenly. “Fluffy is fine. At work they make us wear those visor caps. Like we’re all golf caddies.”

I smile back at her and get a little lost for another moment. And her laugh is terrific. A little husky. I dig it.

“So, uh, are you ready to go?”

That’s when I realize I’m blocking her way out of her own door. “Yup, sorry,” I stammer, leaping to the side like a frisky goat. 

Oh, man. Nobody would call me Mr. Smooth right now, that’s for damn sure. I’m glad my teammates aren’t here to witness this. I’d never live it down. 

Abbi locks her door. “Where are you from, Weston? Is it too far to go home for Thanksgiving?”

“I’m from the eastern edge of Vermont. But I don’t have a car, and we have practice tomorrow anyway. Hey—does your family drink? I brought a bottle of wine.” I hold it up, along with a bouquet of flowers, too.

“That’s lovely of you,” she says. “I have a bottle in my car too. I find that where alcohol and my so-called family are concerned, more is more. Although I’m driving tonight, so I can’t drink.”

“Your so-called family?”

“Well, it’s complicated without being terribly interesting. But we’re going to my stepfather’s house. I mean, he used to be my stepfather and now he’s married to someone else.” 

“Your step-stepmother,” I say, recalling her text message.

“Right.” She leads me off the porch and down the walkway. “My car is just around the back. It won’t take us long to get there. You’ll be eating turkey dumplings in no time.”

“Sounds good. My body is, like, fifty percent wings and fries at this point. I’m sure you know that. I’m at your restaurant all the time.”

“Table number seventeen,” she says cheerfully. “The hockey table. Do you know that we prep a different portion of wings depending on whether you guys win or lose?”

“No, really? Why?”

“Because you eat more and get drunker on the nights you lose than on the nights you win.”

“Huh. That’s very scientific of you.”

She unlocks an elderly Honda Civic and opens the driver’s side door. “Last chance to back out.”

I wouldn’t dream of it. I have to remember how to be Mr. Smooth, though, and flirt properly with Abbi. Who knows? After a great meal, we could make this a night to remember. “I’m at your service,” I say, hoping it sounds a little sexy and not creepy. “Let’s get our turkey on.”

Huh. Mr. Smooth seems to be on vacation today.

I give myself a fifty-fifty shot at success. But I’ve faced worse odds. Game on.

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