The Kissing Game by Marie Harte
Publisher: Sourcebooks Casablanca
Expected Release Date: February 4th, 2020
Date Read: February 1st, 2020
Rating: 2.5 Stars ⭐️⭐️
This advanced readers copy of The Kissing Game was provided to me by the author and NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
“I bet you a kiss you can’t resist me.”
Rena Jackson is ready. She’s worked her tail off to open up her own hair salon, and she’s almost ready to quit her job at the dive bar. Rena’s also a diehard romantic, and she’s had her eye on bar regular Axel Heller for a while. He’s got that tall-dark-and-handsome thing going big time. Problem is, he’s got that buttoned-up Germanic ice man thing going as well. With Valentine’s Day just around the corner, Rena’s about ready to give up on Axel and find her own Mr. Right.
At six foot six, Axel knows he intimidates most people. He’s been crushing on the gorgeous waitress for months. But the muscled mechanic is no romantic, and his heart is buried so deep, he has no idea how to show Rena what he feels. He knows he’s way out of his depth and she’s slipping away. So, he makes one crazy, desperate play…
I’m conflicted… It took me a while to decide how to rate this one. It wasn’t that I hated it. But I also didn’t completely enjoy it.
If I were to simply look at the surface of this book, and not dive too deeply into the overall plot or character actions, I’d say it was a quick read and fairly decent. The story line was alright, and there were definitely some cute romantic parts. I also enjoyed the family aspects way more than anything else. I love reading family banter and closeness, and this book had a lot of it.
But actually getting into the meat book I found there were a lot of parts that were annoying or strange. Some of the characters reactions/thoughts on certain events seemed a bit overdramatized. I don’t see a normal person reacting that way or saying some of the things the characters would say and it seemed unrealistic at times. With a contemporary romance novel I’m looking for those real world occurrences. I want to see the depth of the characters and I found that a bit lacking in this.
I also noticed the characters seemed very contradictory at times. A big issue between the characters (as stated in the synopsis) is that one seems very closed off and doesn’t seem to want to talk about things. When they first meet that is true. After their first date, where said character actually opened up a lot, the other character still complained that they hardly ever talk. This continued on for quite a bit and really annoyed me. There were also other instances where the characters would do or say things that seemed completely opposite to something they were doing five minutes before. Aside from being annoying, it was confusing.
I honestly just could’t get past some of the ridiculous behavior from the characters. I found the romance seemed to be a bit forced at times and also had a touch of overall oddness to it. Sadly this book just didn’t hit the mark for me as I had expected to.
Thanks for checking out this review! Happy Reading 🖤