It’s all fun and games until someone catches feelings.
If there’s something Pio Alvez is good at, it’s pretending to be someone he’s not. On stage and on-screen, the actor has mastered the art of becoming the characters he plays, and his new role should be no different. After all, how difficult would it be to pretend to be smitten with a beautiful, intelligent go-getter like Audrey Alonzo?
Perhaps it’s more difficult pretending not to be.
I received an ARC of this book from the Author as part of the press tour. This did not affect my review in any way.
This book was one of my most anticipated novels for this year. If you’ll remember, I read Waiting in the Wings earlier this year and loved it so much. I think everyone who’s read the book would agree with me if I say that everyone of us fell in love with Pio Alvez, even just a bit. So I was really excited when I learned that Tara was writing a book, a spin-off, about Pio! I immediately signed up, when I heard that there was going to be a blog tour for this one!
I enjoyed Waiting in the Wings so much that I went into this one with big expectations especially with character backgrounds, since the romance aspect was pretty much established. We’ve seen a glimpse of Pio from WitW, despite that, his character still managed to surprise me in many ways. Pio Alvez is a softboy!!! Okay, so if you haven’t read WitW yet, Pio is an actor and basically a theatre legacy, this was also established in this book but I do recommend reading WitW first so you would have a deeper understanding of Pio’s character.
“I thought maybe I could call someone else, but I figured we have history, so…”
“Mm-hmm. But if you want chemistry, we can work on that too.”
I really love Audrey’s character. She’s smart, level-headed, and sassy, yet vulnerable and a bit of a damsel in distress for a duration in the book. She’s also family oriented, actually they (Pio) both are, which made her character really relatable. The chemistry was established pretty early and smoothly, I must say haha! I really enjoy reading their banters, with them trying to one-up each other. This was also an upgrade in terms of the steam level so that’s one thing to look forward to *winks*
It’s a little hard to talk about the plot without me spilling the beans but it was well executed. I had a huge expectation for this one and I’m so glad it didn’t disappoint. Tara Frejas has a way with words that makes her books difficult to put down. This book just sucked me into the wormhole of fluff, a little angst, steam, and more fluff. Also, did I mention that this has a fake-dating trope??? It’s one of my favorite tropes so hell yes! So if you’re into that and other things, I totally recommend this book!
It’s just sometimes you realize… some things are just not worth sacrificing what’s important to you for.
Last thing, did you see that cover????? I love the cover
and the model so much. I love this initiative of the #romanceclass community to have Filipino models on covers because obviously we need this representation and visibility. I’m sure if you’re familiar with the community, you’ve already seen Fred Lo in other covers. In case you didn’t know, Fred is one of the live readers that #romanceclass invites during events and he’s an absolute sweetheart. So I’d like to take this opportunity to commend the #romanceclass team and the models who took part into this initiative!