Annabel Paulsen

Teoksen Here for the Wrong Reasons tekijä

1 Work 19 jäsentä 9 arvostelua

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Here for the Wrong Reasons (2024) 19 kappaletta

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Tämä arvostelu kirjoitettiin LibraryThingin Varhaisia arvostelijoita varten.
I really enjoyed this; the premise of the story is unique and fun. I enjoyed the story and romance. Some parts of the chemistry (like Lauren’s character in general) didn’t land with me, but maybe it did with others. Overall, I would read more from these authors!
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britabee | 8 muuta kirja-arvostelua | May 18, 2024 |
Tämä arvostelu kirjoitettiin LibraryThingin Varhaisia arvostelijoita varten.
Here For The Wrong Reasons sounds really fun in theory but your enjoyment of it is likely going to hinge on two things:
1) How much do you want to read a book version of The Bachelor? Like a fair number of other people, I thought this would be a jumping off point but no, we ride this trick alllllllllll the way to the end of the book for the most part.
2) Do you mind if your couple doesn't really interact that much for like, the first fourth of the book?

I had mixed feelings about both things, but neither is really a deal-breaker for me. I've read other dating show books and liked them and sometimes a story needs setup. The pacing, however, does feel off, and despite feeling like I read this book for quite awhile, I still don't feel like I could really tell you all that much about Lauren or Krystin beyond the absolute basics. That's a bit of a bummer, honestly, as I think they could have been and should have been more fleshed out. I wonder if it's a case of the authors knowing everything about their characters and just not managing to convey it on page?
As it is, Lauren suffers the most from this, as she keeps herself pretty closed off from everyone she interacts with, and the one thing she keeps repeating (that Josh seems like a nice guy and she'll be gone before she's far enough into the show to break his heart) is said so often you know it's gonna blow up in her face. Which it does and her lack of really caring until it happens is just...obnoxious or perhaps cruel. I'm not entirely sure, but in any case, it's not a good look for her. I loathe the narrative trick where writers have a character just deliberately not think about that one super important thing that in reality would be running through their head on an absolute LOOP every time they tried to ignore it. In this case, it's part of Delia and Krystin's past and seriously, waiting for that obvious shoe to drop was actually painful to sit through for a good giant chunk of the book.

Where the book does shine is examining the reasons why neither character feels comfortable enough to be out. Krystin has managed to mostly miss the memo that being a lesbian is even an option, so hyper-focused on what her parents have and representations she's seen in media (and still somehow missed any queer rep somehow) as well as having a convenient excuse in not being able to have a boyfriend while being a rodeo queen. I loved her slow realization that huh, no, not everyone does feel the same way she does. The way her 'butterflies' are initially written about and her feelings towards her dates with Josh are very well done. I also loved her actively choosing Josh as the guy who would be the one to break the spell of apathy she's felt (at best) towards her past few romantic dalliances and how she actually seemed to like him, even though she definitely didn't like him romantically.
Lauren's ahead of things a little bit when it comes to having figured out she's not straight, but the number of people in her life who know this for a fact is painfully small. Her fears about coming out and what it would mean for life as she knows it are her biggest redeeming qualities once it becomes clear that she's breaking her own rules to stay on the show longer. Her fear of being left behind when her ex is ready to come out? Love it, even when she lashes out.

Alas, these two seem to absolutely REFUSE to talk to one another and it's just... why? We're given the impression they have a TON of downtime by the time they hook up and yet they just make assumption after assumption about each other. I wanted to root for them but it felt like we somehow didn't have nearly enough time to do so. There are bright spots, sure, but it felt like we were being rushed along while still somehow moving so very slowly. For all I know that's accurate for a dating show, so there is that possibility. Still, we're told and shown how the show is edited to string along a few moments together to make them seem bigger than they are, all while ignoring the sheer number of hours of downtime there is behind the scenes, and behind the scenes is where Krystin and Lauren should've grown together the most yet their relationship seems just as cobbled together as Krystin/Josh or Lauren/Josh.
It doesn't help that for that same chunk of the book, I felt bad for Josh, especially as the weeks ticked by and he was sending home women who were possibly actually interested in him in favor of the two contestants least interested in him. I'm not sure I would've felt that way had Lauren not made such a big thing about not wanting to stick around too long out of fear of the backlash should she break his heart, but I might've considering his previous heartbreak is referenced a lot. He seemed like a nice, if painfully obtuse and a bit corny kind of dude, so knowing he's being set up so spectacularly isn't all that fun. Or it wasn't, for me.
The section after it all blows up does try and make the case for why things went on as long as they did and how it was definitely a choice the authors made but it still felt off, possibly because it still relies SO heavily on no one actually communicating.

Ultimately, this feels like it's perfect for on screen in some way, but it also feels like it would be laying a lot on the feet of whatever actors were chosen because the characterization isn't quite as fleshed out as I'd hoped.

Got my copy for review from LT's Early Reviewers program. Thanks, LT!
… (lisätietoja)
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Impy | 8 muuta kirja-arvostelua | May 14, 2024 |
Tämä arvostelu kirjoitettiin LibraryThingin Varhaisia arvostelijoita varten.
Here for the Wrong Reasons is a lesbian romance novel set in the very heterosexual milieu of reality TV--specifically the fictional show Hopelessly Devoted, which definitely is not The Bachelor. Rodeo queen Krystin is hoping to find the fairy-tale romance that she's always dreamed of (to which the men she knows in real life have mysteriously never measured up), while influencer Lauren is just hoping to increase her follower count. But of course, both women's plans go spinning off-course when they meet each other.

I'm not a big reality TV watcher. The only bit of the Bachelor/ette franchise I've ever watched is the clip of the moment on Bachelor Vietnam where one of the contestants confessed her love for another (which I have to imagine was part of the inspiration for this book). As such, I'm sure there are references I'm missing and things that would be funnier if I knew more about the source material, but the book didn't feel too inside-baseball overall and I was able to enjoy it despite my cluelessness.

Both of the main characters were vivid and likeable, and their chemistry was palpable from their first charged interaction during a mud-wrestling match (yes, really). I love that they both have a competitive streak that can take them to some ill-advised places, and I love that Lauren can be ruthless and manipulative and a little vindictive. I also appreciated the book's nuanced and emotionally affecting portrayal of two women dealing, each in her own way, with internalized homophobia and compulsory heterosexuality. It doesn't detract too much from the levels of trashy fun present here, but it adds a bit of depth.
… (lisätietoja)
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xenoglossy | 8 muuta kirja-arvostelua | May 8, 2024 |
Tämä arvostelu kirjoitettiin LibraryThingin Varhaisia arvostelijoita varten.
Such a cute little queer romance story. It plays so nicely into the classic tropes you find in all of the dating shows that are playing right now. I really enjoyed the bits of point of view that allowed the readers to get the perspective of figuring one's sexuality out. I do think the miscommunication trope fit well into this story specifically with the production side of a dating show, which made the miscommunication feel a tad less frustrating than it normally would. All in all a great little read about two ladies just trying to figure out love.… (lisätietoja)
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clougreen | 8 muuta kirja-arvostelua | Apr 21, 2024 |


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