Tuesday, January 4, 2022

The Worst Guy by Kate Canterbary-Review

Eight weeks of forced proximity is a long time to hate someone you’re trying not to love.

Sebastian Stremmel doesn’t need another headache. He has enough of his own without Sara Shapiro, the noisy new reconstructive surgeon, stomping all around his surgical wing with her chippy, chirpy cheerfulness.

But Sebastian doesn’t usually get what he wants.

No one gets under his skin like Sara - so much so a heated “debate” and an exam room left in shambles later, they land themselves in eight weeks of hospital-mandated conflict resolution counseling. Now they’re forced to fight fair…which quickly leads them to playing dirty when no one’s looking.

They know it’s a mistake.

They promise themselves it will never happen again.

They swear they got it out of their systems.

They didn’t.

Author’s Note: Grumpy/recovering people-pleaser sunshine. Introverts attract. Enemies-to-lovers in the workplace. Banter, bicker, and button-pushing foreplay. Don’t tell the friend group, get jealous when the friend group tries to fix her up.

Heat: rip her clothes off before you get the front door open.

Angst: big laughs, big feels, no ugly crying.

This one was recommended to me by a reader I trust, and it definitely didn't disappoint.

Enemies to lovers is a tricky trope. You have to believe they don't like one another (which is usually not where the problems start) the hate has to be genuine, not forced, and not silly. (This is where a lot of books in this trope crash and burn.) And, if you have survived all that, you have to manage to get from hating one another to a relationship the reader can actually believe. This is where the rest of the books in the genre often get stuck.

Not this one.

The hate? Believable and wow was the hate sex hot. The reasons for the hatred? Believable and reasonable, and I think most of us would react in a similar way.

The romance? This really worked. And it worked well.

The pacing was also on point. Right about the time in the book when I started thinking...ok, now what?...the author answered that question.

There are some serious undertones in this one, which the author mentions at the beginning, so I am not going to get into them here. But I felt they were handled well, and authentically without making them the entire identity of the character.

I enjoyed and recommend this title.

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