A few days ago I posted me opening the Inaugural Men Read Romance Subscription Box. The box, with the theme Celebrate Romance, included 4 books. I just finished the fourth book tonight, and thought I’d celebrate romance with quick reviews of the 4 books.
Blind Date With A Book Boyfriend by Lucy Eden
Blind Date With A Book Boyfriend is cute, fast-paced novella where two people find each other in a romance bookstore, spend the day together, and find themselves unable to imagine life without each other. This book is an ode to romance novels (bonus, the author actually mentions quite a few romance books, including one my faves, Lyssa Kay Adams’s The Bromance Book Club). This is a romance book that celebrates the romance genre and everyone who loves it.
And I have to ask, why haven’t I had this kind of day?! I have spent a lot of time in a lot of bookstores and I have yet to have an encounter like this. Plus, I loved the day they spent together doing fun and silly things.
This book embraces being open to new experiences and risk. Take a chance, see where it might lead.
Isn’t It Bromantic? by Lyssa Kay Adams
Isn’t It Bromantic? is book 4 of the Bromance Book Club series. You don’t have to read the books in order, but I recommend it. (Okay, mainly that’s my OCD talking because I have, HAVE, to read books in order.) But I do think in this case it would be better to read the other books first because Lyssa never intended to give The Russian (aka Vlad) his own book. In books 1-3, Vlad was just this happy Russian hockey player who loves animals, cries easily, and has digestive problems. In other words, he was more or less the wacky sidekick.
We always run for grand romantic gesture.Vlad, aka The Russian
This is a series I picked up on a whim because who couldn’t resist the title The Bromance Book Club? I was intrigued from the start and have absolutely loved this series. We already know that Colton, an established book club member, will be book 5. But this series has so many wonderful possibilities after that. There’s just so much to unpack and each book is so current with witty dialogue and great characters. Plus, the audio versions are read by Andrew Eiden, who does a fabulous job.
This book explores how we define ourselves in our relationships and explores the need for passions outside of our romantic partnerships.
Talk Bookish to Me by Kate Bromley
Talk Bookish to Me is a second chance/enemies to lovers double trope! I absolutely devoured this book in one sitting. The dialogue is witty and clever, the characters are well written, and there’s just enough tension to make it oh so real. I laughed, I (nearly) cried, I wanted to throw things. All the feels! I was totally rooting for them.
Plus, there’s an adorable bulldog. Bonus, the MC is a romance novelist. Double bonus, there’s a book within a book. And extra fun, she goes to Italy a la Under the Tuscan Sun. Dogs, writing, and Italy. All my favorite things.
This *might* just be my fave of the 4. It’s a close call with Vlad’s story.
This book delves into the journey. That we each need to understand our own motives, thoughts, and feelings before starting a journey with someone.
Too Good To Be Real by Melonie Johnson
So I admit Too Good To Be Real was the one I liked the least. My initial thought was it sounded a bit too much like How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days, except with a lot more talk about penises. While I liked the concept, (I would totally spend a week or a long weekend at a resort where I could LARP* and live out my rom-com fantasies), I felt it overly relied on rom-com movie so much so that it felt like a shallow imitation of a rom-com movie instead of a book that happened to be set around rom-coms.
And honestly, my biggest issue was I just didn’t connect with the characters. I never really rooted for them. So although the book didn’t hit my all.the.feels button, it is still a fun, easy HEA* read.
This book focuses how our backstory affects our relationships and how we can work through our baggage.
*LARP = live action role playing & HEA = happily ever after
That’s why fiction resonates with people. It speaks to universal truths.The Bromance Book Club, Lyssa Kay Adams
Overall, I give the box 5 stars. Even though I clearly had favorites, I did like each book. Each book celebrates romance by showing that the journey really is the most important part. Because c’mon, we all know how every romance book is going to end. But the point is the journey, not the ending. We root for these characters because we see their challenges, we relate to their struggles, we identify with them. And, maybe, more importantly, we can escape, at least for a little while, into a world where we know there will be a HEA.
Have you read any of these books? What did you think? Share your thoughts in the comments below.