Top Ten Tuesday: Book boyfriends

Happy Top Ten Tuesday!  Today, we’re celebrating the romantic love interests that keep us coming back for more – our top ten book boyfriends.  Buckle up, because I have a lot to say on this topic!

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Krista & Becca Ritchie have a knack for writing really great love interests.  Honestly, I could list any of their male leads as one of my favorite book boyfriends, but I narrowed it down to Connor Cobalt (Kiss the Sky), Luka Kotova (Infini), and Ryke Meadows (Hothouse Flower).  Both Connor Cobalt and Ryke Meadows are heavily featured in many of the Ritchies’ books but are introduced as love interests in the books above.

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Seven Ways to Lose Your Heart is all about reconnecting with a childhood friend and falling in love.  As if it takes much more to win my heart than that… but Kennedy Harrison is a great love interest.  He’s flawed but still romantic.  He knows what he wants, but he’s not an over-the-top alpha.  He’s a realistic love interest.

Similar to the Ritchie sisters, R.S. Grey knows how to write the perfect guy.  In Anything You Can Do, Lucas Thatcher is Daisy Bell’s childhood rival – and new co-worker.  Working together as physicians at a small family practice, Lucas pushes Daisy’s buttons in just the right way.  In The Allure of Julian Lefray, Julian hires Josephine Keller to help him maintain his sister’s fashion line while she’s away.  There’s enough sexual tension to power the entirety of New York City, but they’re determined not to give in and jeopardize the company.

I fell in love with Arm Candy’s Davis Price in Jessica Lemmon’s previous book, Eye Candy. Davis is a sardonic stock analyst who is completely done with relationships.  In his own book, we see him start to open up to the possibility of love… and then really knock the socks off of his love interest (and me) with his absolute perfection.

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Now, clearly, these three books are young adult romances.  They’re not so much book boyfriends for me now, but they’re boys I wish I could have known when I was an actual young adult.

In The Unexpected Everything, Andie’s summer is turned upside down when her father’s political scandal causes her to lose her place in a competitive summer program.  Stuck at home and desperate to get out of the house, she takes a job as a dog walker and befriends Clark, a young, shy, bestselling author.  Clark has a great personality, sure, but imagine finding out that your summer crush is a bestselling author!

The Big F’s leading lady, Danielle, has a similarly upturned life.  When she unexpectedly fails a class during her senior year of high school, her admission to her dream school is revoked.  She enrolls at a community college to get her life back on track and develops surprising feelings for her seemingly grumpy co-worker, Porter.  Not only is Porter a total dreamboat, but he also helps Dani stay on the straight and narrow when it comes to her classes.

Kate’s been crushing on the school’s football star for years.  Now, in her senior year of high school, she’s made it her mission to go to prom with him.  The plan?  Have her friend Cooper teach her how to flirt her way into Mick’s heart.  Operation Prom Date is a go, but what happens when Kate realizes that Cooper is better than Mick in every possible way?

Who are your favorite love interests?

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ARC review: Bad Reputation by Nicole Edwards

Goodreads   Amazon

Tech executive Cassie and bad boy hockey star Chase have been best friends since their college days.  Just friends, thank you very much.  When Cassie is given the opportunity to deliver her company’s yearly keynote address in Las Vegas, she invites Chase along for the ride.  What happens Vegas stays in Vegas… sometimes, at least.

Let me be shameless for a second here and say that I only requested this ARC because of the cover model. I mean… whoever designed that cover – nice job. That was exactly how I pictured Chase throughout the book, and yeah, I can see why the fans can’t stay away.

Anyway. Moving on.

I think I might have actually started squealing when I found out that both characters attended my alma mater, UW-Madison! I’ve never read a book where the school was portrayed as anything other than the big, bad football rival, so this was a nice change of pace. The author got some points from me just for including that little piece of background information.

I really loved Chase, which is only partially due to his depiction on the cover. He has two dads, which I think is great. He has a hot temper on the ice but is actually super nice and friendly and good-natured off the ice.  Oh, and despite his celebrity status, he’s totally in love with his best friend.  Sounds like my kind of guy.

I could really take or leave Cassie.  She’s definitely not awful, as far as romance heroines go, but she was very frustrating. She was so adamant about not falling in love, especially with Chase, and not getting married and not making her mother’s mistakes, and what was even her problem with her mother to begin with? Like, sure, she seemed a little flighty and annoying, but I didn’t see anything in this book to back up Cassie’s level of disdain.

It was pretty obvious that Cassie and Chase were going to hook up once they got to Vegas, but I thought that aside from their hookup, much of what happened in Vegas was super out of character given everything we’d learned about Cassie. One night in Vegas and she becomes this irresponsible little girl who shirks all responsibility and starts doing things just for the fun of it? I mean, she never has fun back home. She spends the entire plane ride working. Am I really supposed to believe that she basically just forgot she was in Vegas on a work trip?  I’m not sure why this was necessary for the plot.

As an aside, though, speaking of the hookup – can we nix this whole “you don’t have to use a condom because I trust you” thing? It’s been showing up in just about every romance I’ve read this year, and I don’t care if you’ve been best friends for ten years, you’ve both had multiple partners. Even setting aside STDs, there’s a thing called pregnancy and if you’re forgetting that you have a job, I’m pretty sure you’ve been forgetting to take your pills.  I’ve never been to Vegas, but surely they sell condoms there.

Anyway, I liked the first half of this book a lot more than the second half, but it was still a solid three-star romance for me. Chase definitely carried the book more than Cassie did, but I liked him enough that it probably improved my rating. I’d be interested to read the future books in the Bad Boys of Sports series.  Maybe we’ll get Marky Mark and Natalie’s story?

Final rating: ★★★☆☆

Thanks to Netgalley and the publisher for the ARC!