Series: Bromance Book Club, #3
Published by Berkley on 27th October 2020
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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.
I’ll admit—this was the cover that really, really got me. I’d honestly thought I’d be reading about a cat cafe and some unrequited but mutual pining love, and perhaps some exploration of family side-drama that would stay somewhat peripheral to Noah Logan’s and Alexis Carlisle’s growing relationship. And I was surprised—not entirely pleasantly—when it wasn’t quite all of that with just 1 cat that featured prominently.
Having pretty much jumped straight into this book without having ever read the earlier books in the series, it was a tad bit hard to catch up with all of the secondary characters, but this was an easy read nonetheless. There were parts that left me breathless (especially the way in which Noah and Alexis got their act together), and parts that were so comedically stylised (the bromance book club and their antics that this can’t possibly happen in real life) that I was caught out bewildered and perplexed. But there was also a huge part that I wasn’t thrilled with at all: the hurried and rushed to a family that Alexis barely knew for a life-changing favour and her quick capitulation despite years of bitterness and resentment towards a father who’d played too fast and too loose years ago.
The bigger theme of forgiveness and being able to see past old hurts rings loud here, but I still couldn’t understand Alexis’s naïveté when it came to a family that she didn’t know—that much had she put into the elusive chase to get that picture-perfect idea of a family—,her refusal to be a little ‘harder’ towards people who had only reached out because they’d needed her. In fact, I thought of her inability to see what Noah had been saying to her as reckless foolishness in fact, despite the importance of what Lyssa Kay Adams presumably wanted to bring across: the importance of organ donation.
So while I was actually happy with a friends-to-lovers romance written into it, this was somewhat overshadowed by the domestic squabbles and the need to ‘learn a lesson first with the found family’ before a HEA can happen. That everything has to be righted apart from a solid relationship isn’t the prerequisite for a HFN/HEA for me and that Adams tried to cram it in all rather unbelievably did dim my enthusiasm somewhat for a book that could have been otherwise more engaging.