Friday, February 10, 2023

Book Review: Nobody Puts Romcoms in the Corner

By Melissa Amster

Not an expert, not even close, not in any of this. But nobody will try harder than me to make you happy.

Sally is a classic romantic and Harry is a classic cynic, but when a drunken bet leads the new flatmates to (badly) recreate ‘the lift’ from Dirty Dancing, and the video goes viral (#EpicRomcomReenactmentFailure), they both realise there’s potential financial benefit in blundering their way through the romcom lexicon for their suddenly vast social media following.

Now, as Harry and Sally bring major romcom moments to new life – including recreating that classic diner scene – their faking it turns to making…out and suddenly they’re living a real life romcom of their own! But like all the greatest love stories, the road to happily ever after is paved with unexpected challenges for this hero and heroine… (Synopsis courtesy of Rachel's Random Resources.)

I have read a few books that are based off re-enacting romcom movies or involving them in some way. They've all been enjoyable, and Kathryn Freeman's latest novel is no exception. I wasn't actually sure what to expect going into this one, but I found it surprisingly delightful and entertaining. I laughed many times and felt sympathy toward Harry and Sally for different reasons. The steamy scenes were really hot too. (Although I would have preferred them from Sally's perspective as that would have taken the heat up even more.)

Carrie Fisher's character (Marie) said in When Harry Met Sally, "Tell me I'll never have to be out there again." I totally know how she feels. Dating in the era of social media seems so much harder and that definitely comes into play in this novel too. I've been with my husband for a total of 21 years (starting from when we first met in early February of 2002) and I can't say I have any personal experience navigating the 2020's dating scene. However, I've heard about it from my friends and it doesn't sound pretty. On the other hand, I do vicariously enjoy the early stages of dating through reading books like this. And Kathryn Freeman supplied that experience really well!

What didn't work so well for me was the idea that they could get so much interest in a TikTok about re-enacting a romcom scene. There are so many TikToks being posted all the time that I feel like this could just get lost in the shuffle. So that just seemed far-fetched. I get why it happened this way for the book and what its purpose was, but I wish they had a different way of going viral with these romcom scenes. Like the fails could have been even more embarrassing and attention grabbing. Maybe I'm just not as much of a TikTok person and just don't get the appeal. I also felt like Sally put so much pressure on having this ideal love story play out in her real life that she got too introspective about it after a while.

Overall, it was a charming story and I had a fun time reading it. This novel would definitely earn a "romcommunism" award from Ted Lasso!

Movie casting suggestions:

Thanks to Rachel's Random Resources for the book in exchange for an honest review.

Purchase Links:
Amazon UK * Amazon US

About Kathryn Freeman (in her own words):

For as long as I can remember, I’ve always wanted to write a book. It may have had something to do with my obsession with reading romance. Real life interfered and I headed off in a different direction – into the world of science, becoming a pharmacist before joining the pharmaceutical industry. I did end up writing, but it was about disease and medicines. Decades later, I’m finally doing what I always wanted to do. 

With a husband who asks every Valentine's Day whether he has to buy a card (yes, he does), all the romance in my life is in my head. Then again, his unstinting support of my career change proves love isn't always about hearts and flowers - and heroes come in many disguises.

Visit Kathryn online:
Website * Facebook * Twitter * Instagram

Visit all the stops on Kathryn's blog tour:

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