Review: Rhythm, Chord & Malykhin by Mariana Zapata (2015)

Heat Factor: Not completely, but pretty chaste

Character Chemistry: “OMG! Does he like me?!?!” “Girl, he’s so into you!”

Plot: Please see Character Chemistry

Overall: This book is high school. 

Gaby and Sasha might be 26 and 27, respectively, but holy cow did this book throw me back to high school. 

I’ll summarize it for you:

Gaby: OMG, I just kicked the hottest guy I’ve ever seen in the butt! I’m mortified FOREVER!

Sasha: This chick is adorable.

Gaby: I just got out of a two-year relationship with a douchecanoe.

Sasha: I better take it slow.

Gaby: This guy melts my panties every night with his amazing voice. But he probably has a girlfriend. Of course he has a girlfriend. Why wouldn’t he have a girlfriend?

Sasha: Everything you say makes me fall for you a little more.

Gaby: Eek! I’ve caught feelings but he’s not into me. Clearly. Except that he keeps acting like he is. I don’t know what to think!?!?

Sasha: I want to spend all my time with you.

Gaby: I mean, there’s literally no way he’s into me.

Sasha: I’m into you.


Lol. I could continue. But I think you get the idea. It’s both adorable and ridiculous, like young love should be. 

Sasha and Gaby are on a concert tour. Sasha is the singer for the headlining band and Gaby is the merch girl for her twin brother’s band. Forced proximity, anyone? Anyway, Gaby is the only woman on a bus full of men, three of whom have known her since she was five. Plus it’s Zapata, so be prepared for some raunchy humor and family members who tease each other to show affection. If you’re not into insults as a demonstration of love, probably don’t choose this book. 

The story follows the tour, so most of it is Gaby and Sasha hanging out, sometimes with the bands, sometimes not. The nice thing is, it’s not a bunch of drinking and partying and rocker lifestyle smut. The musicians are serious about their craft, and it is shown on the page. But it’s low key. If you’re looking for a more active plot, Zapata’s probably not your author. 

Of all the MZ books I’ve read, this is the least angsty. Sasha is clearly a nice guy. Gaby just can’t read his mind to know if he reciprocates her feelings. But I can say with absolute certainty: I would have jumped Sasha’s bones the minute he said to a packed concert venue his favorite day was my birthday. I mean, what else do you need to know to understand that a man is into you? But Gaby is not me, so the reader gets a slow burn instead.

This book might be for someone looking for a pretty tame, extremely low-angst, sweet romance. I have read quite a bit of smut (obviously), and I’ll say there was a moment that I gasped (like, out loud) because Sasha is the absolute sweetest. I can’t remember the last time that happened. 

Buy Now: Amazon | Bookshop

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Rock Gods

This book is soooo cayooot!

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