The Substitute by Mickey Miller

4 STARS!

Release Date: January 14, 2019

Synopsis:

When the NFL goes on strike, Super Bowl champion Peyton O’Rourke ends up back in his hometown as a substitute teacher and high school football coach.
The one thing he didn’t count on?
Fellow elementary school teacher Maddy Cooper being newly single.

She’s the hot girl next door type.

Literally. She’s literally the cute girl who grew up next door to Peyton and his best friend’s (now ex) girl.

And even though he knows he should be with anyone other than Maddy Cooper —

Well you know the drill.

Things are going to get hot. Heavy.

Does Facebook still have an ‘It’s complicated’ button?
Because it’s about to go down.

Review:

This was cute. I felt really bad for Maddy in the beginning, but I also wanted to smack her sometimes, especially near the end. Peyton was a delicious male lead, who I really wanted to smack in the beginning, but grew on me towards the end. But really, I saved all my smacks for Michael, the ex. Funny how that worked out. Overall, the journey with both of these characters was really fun. I’ll definitely be checking out more books from this author.

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The (half) Truth by Leddy Harper

4 Stars!

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Release Date: February 19, 2019

Publisher: Montlake Romance

Synopsis:

Tatum Alexander is so close to realizing her dream of becoming a sous chef she can taste it, but working at her ex-fiancé’s restaurant with his new girlfriend was never in her career plan. To save face and prove she’s moved on, Tatum cooks up a lie that she’s in a relationship with her best friend’s super hot cousin. There’s just one problem: Jason only recently moved to town, and he has no idea they’re already “dating.”

Jason’s a recovering ladies’ man who shouldn’t be on the menu, but that doesn’t mean he’s immune to Tatum’s quirky charm. Giving her lie a kernel of truth, they decide some no-strings-attached fun between the sheets can’t hurt. But as Tatum’s forced to keep making up stories to cover her original fib, she has a hard time separating what’s real and what’s fake—including her feelings for Jason.

With too many tales spun, Tatum can only watch in horror as her collection of yarns begins to unravel, leaving everyone she cares about feeling betrayed. After so many lies, will it be too late to set the record straight? And more importantly, will she be able to convince Jason there’s truth in their love?

Review:

As a person who hates lies, I thought I might have trouble with this premise, but Tatum’s lie has a hilarious impact. It seems so silly, but snowballs so easily. Which leads me to discuss Tatum. I LOVE HER! She is awkward, and silly, and TOTALLY AMAZING. She is one of my favorite realistic female characters I’ve read in a while. And her lies are just too entertaining because they get so outlandish. Jason was interesting, and likable, but Tatum really made the story for me.

This story also has one of my most favorite things, a great supporting cast of family members. I love that Tatum is already apart of Jason’s family get-togethers before he even enters the picture, and she lives with his cousin. I love that his mom is going through a phase of finding herself, and I love that he just can’t understand it. I just love the family dynamic so much!

Special thank you to Montlake and NetGalley for the free eARC in exchange for an honest review!

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