Review: Truth or Dare by Danielle Allen (2020)

Heat Factor: This game of “truth or dare” got p-r-e-t-t-y daring

Character Chemistry: More told than shown, at least until they start with the sexytimes

Plot: Longtime friends meet up at wedding and play a game of “truth or dare” that changes everything

Overall: There’s a lot of expository text, but the games they played were enough to keep me turning pages

For me, this book succeeded on the sexy bits. @somewherelostinbooks of Romancetagram, where I discovered this book, enjoyed the friendly banter, and I would agree that Allen does a great job of presenting the friend group in this book in a way that many of us who’ve been in a friend group like this would recognize. 

The premise is that this group of college friends, who’ve all spread out over the US after graduating college, where they met, come back together for a destination wedding. Simone, our narrator, sees a hot, ripped man in the hallway of the hotel and is shocked to realize that this sexy man is formerly-lanky Kingston, one of her best friends. Simone is now the proud owner of a lovely, round bottom as well. 

On the first night of the wedding extravaganza, the group goes out on a boat, and at the end of the night, after plenty of drinking, they decide to recall the good old days and have a game of “truth or dare”. Kingston and Simone kiss, both are unexpectedly aroused by the kiss, and everything snowballs from there. I have to say, I wasn’t super excited that the reason for these two to finally get together is that they had become more physically ideal. I guess there has to be a reason for a 10-year friendship to change, but “oh, you’re sexy now” made me feel a bit eek. 

I also felt like the reason that Simone and Kingston couldn’t be together / had to keep things secret was childish. Thank goodness Simone also thought so. But I can totally see a 30-year-old woman trying to maneuver a relationship between two people who have not consented to being set up and roping her friends into encouraging the match as well. This is what the bride does, and how can you say no to the bride on her wedding day? I felt a bit bad for Simone, feeling stuck in that position, even if she could have avoided some drama by making some different – still diplomatic – choices when the bride was talking about her maneuvers to set up Kingston. 

That said, the way Simone and Kingston talk through their feelings about the kiss, which escalates into their own personal game of “truth or dare” was HOT AF. A+++++ to Allen for keeping things interesting as they “truth or dare” their way to talking about their feelings and desires. By the time Kingston was secretly fingering Simone under the dinner table, I was toast.

Way to keep that tension thrumming all the way home. 

Buy Now: Amazon

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