Friday, December 1, 2023

Book Review: Can't Take My Eyes Off You

By Sara Steven

Berkley Kaine was lucky enough to meet her perfect man at a young age.

Blissfully in love, she's about to graduate college, take on her dream job, and has never been more optimistic for the future.

Will Adler has been in love with Berkley Kaine since the moment he laid eyes on her.

But ever since they became a couple, Will and Berkley have had to contend with his influential, richer-than-rich socialite family who have never thought Berkley is good enough. Determined to drive the young lovers apart, Will's family reveal the secret he's yet to find a way to tell her – he's signed on with his brother to be a part of a reality TV show called PDX Royals, as apparently, money is all it takes to be 'royalty' in America.

Can Berkley forgive Will for lying?

Can the couple survive the pressure of Will's crazy family, his constant bad decisions, and a TV show they never expected to blow up the way it did?

Can first love ever become forever love? (Synopsis courtesy of Goodreads.)

It’s not often I read a story that revolves around two people who have been in a long-term relationship since their youth. I thought that premise was really refreshing and added a lovely aspect to who Berkley (Berx) and Will are as a couple. It sets the foundation for why they are so close, right down to the special tattoo that Berkley has for Will. By all appearances, theirs is a love that is destined to survive anything–until the Adlers threaten to ruin everything.

Will comes from a prestigious family, while Berkley does not. The Adlers have never felt that Berkley measures up, coming up with all sorts of scenarios in an attempt to get her out of Will’s life. It’s never worked before, but when Will signs on to do a reality TV series that will feature him, his brother, as well as other young socialite royals, Berkley realizes that Will’s parents have finally come up with the one plan to be rid of her, considering her extreme dislike for anything related to reality television. She has no intention of allowing herself to be part of the chaos, which is why she decides it would be best for them to call it quits. 

The reader gets to see where Will and Berkley are as a pseudo separated couple and then individually, spanning years’ worth of experiences. Will goes through a tumultuous time, pining for Berkley, feeling as though he’s made a terrible mistake and feeling trapped due to signing his name on a dotted line. I appreciated that the story wasn’t all sweetness and light and highlighted some very real issues that can and often will happen to people when they feel stuck beneath the limelight. Berkley does all she can as best she can for the man she feels chose fame over her, and it made me wonder if there would be any hope for this couple, and if young love can survive through a lifetime. 

The idea behind a reality show focused on young socialites felt realistic, the type of thing I might see on E! (as mentioned in the book), or MTV or Bravo. Waiting to see what would happen for and to Will and Berkley and their messily sweet relationship definitely kept me on the hook.

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

Purchase Links:
Amazon US * Amazon UK * Apple

Aimee Brown is the bestselling romantic comedy author of several books including The Lucky Dress. She’s an Oregon native, now living in a tiny town in cold Montana and sets her books in Portland. Previously published by Aria, her new series for Boldwood is full of love and laughter and real-life issues. The first book was published in January 2023.

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