Heat Factor: They accidentally end up at a sex party and I was fanning myself.
Character Chemistry: Banter
Plot: She only wants the kind of love that’s all in, he’s wary of the emotional roller coaster of love, they’re in a fake relationship for Reasons
Overall: Mia Sosa is good at words.
This is a Me problem that I feel I should acknowledge going into this review: I read two ARCs that released a month apart within a week of each other, and they both involve a hero who believes in stable marital partnerships but not love. In short. And both of them felt this way because of the impact of their parents’ decisions on their youths. So that’s a thing that happened.
I remembered why I had so much fun reading Mia Sosa when I started this book. The dialogue is so great! It’s playful and fast-paced, and at no point did I scratch my head and think, “Why are you telling me this not very interesting information?” Well-written dialogue is a book perk that simply cannot be overstated.
So, Dean and Solange meet when Solange interrupts Dean’s wedding because she overheard the bride confessing her love for someone else right before the ceremony. You might think this would make for an awkward start, or that Dean might actively dislike Solange, but that is not at all the case, and I have to say, I really needed a book that did not involve some variation of hate-to-love. Dean and Solange make friends right away, though this is helped because Dean is extremely pragmatic and handles the end of his not-marriage in a super calm way and because Dean is the best friend of the guy who’s dating Solange’s cousin.
Considering that both Dean and Solange live full, busy lives and that Solange is planning to leave DC for a job in Ohio at the end of the summer, the two could have gone their separate ways with no further anything, but instead Dean’s ridiculous law firm quest for partnership leads him to blurt out that he’s in a serious relationship with Solange. (Honestly, the law firm is not even particularly dramatized, which is just sad. And also not surprising given Sosa’s law firm background.) So of course he has to beg Solange to actually help him out of this pickle.
Solange does, partially because it is so in line with her personality to just go for it, but also because Dean says all the right things and takes ownership of what he’s done. And then we’re rolling!
Which, friends, includes Dean getting drunk and performing Pony by Ginuwine complete with Magic Mike dance moves during a karaoke night at a bar. Let me share that with you:
And also they end up at a sex party in Adams Morgan because Dean’s colleague is absolute trash. But the sex party was hot, not gonna lie. I do wish that the colleague had gotten his comeuppance a bit more than what we ended up with in the end, though. He was the worst.
And, of course, Mia Sosa’s sex writing is, as usual, on point.
Oh, and did I mention that, because Solange’s mom was goaded into jealous defensiveness by another cousin, she said that Solange was also in a committed relationship, so Solange also needs a fake relationship? The fun part of this is that Solange doesn’t initially ask Dean to fill that role – she’s got another plan, thanks – but what would a rom-com be without a whole bunch of things going exactly wrong at the right time?
I definitely had fun reading this book, and Sosa’s prose is just great. If you’re in the mood for something that’s leaning into its fun side, and you’re as excited as I was about a book that’s not starting from an enemies-to-lovers sort of space, this is a good choice.
Also, Rasika is amazeballs, and if you go to DC you should try to get a reservation at the Penn Quarter location. Or sometimes you can just go to the bar there and get a table if you’re patient.
I voluntarily read and reviewed a complimentary copy of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own. We disclose this in accordance with 16 CFR §255.
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