Between private jets, designer labels, and lavish resorts, Tandy Owens should be having the time of her life. Her celebrity author best friend is getting married and all of Hollywood’s elite have turned out for the event. Unfortunately, Tandy’s mood is far from celebratory.
For over a year her heart has been torn between two men: Matthew Cruz, the brilliant, well-educated entrepreneur who makes her feel like a queen, and Mateo, his womanizing musician alter ego, who is known for collecting platinum records, and the panties of his sexual conquests. Matthew assures her that Mateo’s antics are all a show. Even so, with her being the only one to witness his softer side, Tandy begins to wonder which persona is truly the act.
In the sizzling heat of Miami, Tandy reaches the breaking point with their secretive romance, and finds herself asking if a hidden love is truly worth fighting for?
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
This is the second book in the Reel Romance series and is a fantastic contemporary romantic comedy. I loved it!
Tandy Owens is a fantastic character and I really liked her when I first met her in the first book, Adapted for Film. She is the flamboyant friend of Aubrey Evans. Now working as Matthew/Mateo Cruz's manager, and his secret lover, Tandy finds herself questioning whether her love is strong enough to survive the demands of his career.
I received a complimentary copy of this book from the author with no expectation of a positive review.
I was eager to start reading this book as I thoroughly enjoyed the first book of the series. It is told through the eyes of Tandy, though I would have liked to have a little of Matthew's POV too. This is because, although he was introduced in book one as Mateo, I wanted to see behind his cheesy Mateo persona and understand the man (Matthew) that Tandy had fallen in love with. Most of this story seemed to focus on Tandy and her angst about her relationship, as well as the wedding of Aubrey and Kole, rather than focusing on the relationship between her and Matthew itself. They had very little interaction for most of the story, which saddened me. Don't get me wrong, I loved the buildup to the wedding and all the comical goings on with a mysterious teddy bear mascot, but I just didn't have the same enthusiasm for this tale like I had for the first one. I must admit that there are some interesting characters that pop up, like the teddy bear mascot and a goth chick called Willa, who has a habit of popping up when things get sticky/awkward, but I felt that the story focused on the wrong things.
The story is peppered with the sarcastic humour and wit that I have come to love from this author, and has several twists that kept things interesting. The secret identity of the mascot was revealed and I must admit that I was surprised when I found out who it was. However, after thinking about it, I shouldn't have been. I reached the end of the story with mixed feelings; sad that it had finished, but happy at the conclusion.
Stacey Rourke has written a fantastically comedic contemporary romance. I love her characters, who are extremely lifelike and feel like friends. I also love her writing style, which is fast paced, and the story flows wonderfully. I am a huge fan of this author. The wit and charm she brings to her books makes them a joy to read. I am looking forward to reading more of her books, whether they be YA like her Gryphon Series, Dark Fantasy like her Legend Series or Contemporary Romance such as this one, or any other genre she attempts in the future.
Although this is not really a YA story as such, I highly recommend this book to teens aged 15+ and adults who love light-hearted contemporary romances. - Lynn Worton
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Young Adult and Teen Reader voted Author of the Year 2012
Turning Pages Magazine Winner for Best YA book of 2013 & Best Teen Book of 2013
Readers' Favorite Silver Medal Winner for Crane 2015
Stacey Rourke is the author of the award winning YA Gryphon Series, the chillingly suspenseful Legends Saga, and the romantic comedy Adapted for Film. She lives in Michigan with her husband, two beautiful daughters, and two giant dogs. She loves to travel, has an unhealthy shoe addiction, and considers herself blessed to make a career out of talking to the imaginary people that live in her head.