Event planner Audrey Whitaker is returning home to Chicago following a grueling conference meeting she organized. As she’s checking in for her flight, she splurges on a first class upgrade, which puts her next to a handsome guy she knows only as Luke. They hit it off splendidly during the flight and he tries to get her details as they’re waiting to disembark. But Audrey freezes and hightails it off the plane. When he can’t find her, Luke posts a desperate but clever Tweet in an attempt to get help finding her. See, Luke has a reality TV show and is a tiny bit infamous and this thing goes viral, getting the intended result. But, both of them have reason to not want to get into a serious relationship since he’s back in his hometown just for the summer. For some really good professional reasons, they both agree to embark on a fake relationship on social media, never expecting that they’d end up wanting a real one.
I’m not big on reality TV nor social media drama but something about this story tugged at me. Luke Murphy has a home restoration TV show (I’m wild about <i>Love It or List It</i>) and neither he or Audrey frequent social media platforms much at all, even less than me! The setup was a bit different, making for a fairly fresh set of circumstances to spark a romance. While Audrey is currently an event planner, her dream is to pursue a career in commercial photography, which I found much more interesting. I liked her, even her sometimes prickly side, and Luke was genuinely a great guy, despite his frequent blunders.
I really enjoyed this story as it delivered on the promise of the premise. Audrey and Luke’s relationship evolved slowly even while their physical attraction was immediate. Despite their “rules” of the game they were playing, both of them were in agreement each time one was shamelessly violated, and be ready for some steam! Another aspect I found enjoyable was the strong sense of place being in the city of Chicago. I felt like I was getting the view of hometown residents versus the tourist attractions, which was a big deal as I’ve read many stories set here. Both of them were also surrounded by strong family and friend networks that added wonderful flavor to the characters and romance. This was a lovely reading experience and I’m glad I trusted my instincts with this one.
- Release Date: December 28, 2021
- Page Numbers: 345
- Publisher: Carina Press
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(Thanks to the author for my complimentary copy. All opinions are my own.)