Sam Brandis was Tate Jones’s first: Her first love. Her first everything. Including her first heartbreak.
During a whirlwind two-week vacation abroad, Sam and Tate fell for each other in only the way that first loves do: sharing all of their hopes, dreams, and deepest secrets along the way. Sam was the first, and only, person that Tate—the long-lost daughter of one of the world’s biggest film stars—ever revealed her identity to. So when it became clear her trust was misplaced, her world shattered for good.
Fourteen years later, Tate, now an up-and-coming actress, only thinks about her first love every once in a blue moon. When she steps onto the set of her first big break, he’s the last person she expects to see. Yet here Sam is, the same charming, confident man she knew, but even more alluring than she remembered. Forced to confront the man who betrayed her, Tate must ask herself if it’s possible to do the wrong thing for the right reason… and whether “once in a lifetime” can come around twice.
Title : Twice in a Blue Moon
Author : Christina Lauren
Format : eARC
Page Count : 366
Genre : contemporary romance
Publisher : Gallery Books
Release Date : October 22, 2019
Reviewer : Hollis
Rating : ★ ★
Hollis’ 2 star review
It’s happened. I’ve finally rated a CLo book two stars (we won’t count BEAUTIFUL BASTARD in this tally because reasons).
I don’t really know where this trend of having a chunk, or even half, of a contemporary set in the past (aka making it YA) started but.. I don’t want it, or like it. Is this because these books now quality as women’s fiction? Unsure. That said, if you want to write a YA romance, go for it. Flashbacks, fine. But not full, long, chapters of it. It’s just not for me. Likewise, and in a related vein, second-chance romances aren’t my favourite. But I thought CLo could make it work for me. And sometimes it felt like it could’ve, like it was almost there but, overwhelmingly, it didn’t.
This story is about finding that one-true-love twice in a lifetime. And it’s also about twice the betrayals.
I didn’t like the hero because, let’s be honest, he only served a purpose to the plot and as result had no real personality besides muscles. I only liked the heroine when she was confronted with said hero after said betrayal, and after fourteen years of time passing, and let him have it. She stood up for herself, she addressed the elephant in the room, and I rooted for her (we were all rooting for you!). Every other time she was just.. fine, I guess. But her family was made up of mostly frustrating concepts, and while she did have one good friend, she didn’t get half as much page time as she deserved — and that’s probably because so much page time was given over to the script of the movie that took up the focus of the story. And the catalyst for getting these two leads back together.
There just wasn’t a lot to love here. Like many of CLo’s recent books, the heat factor is tame, they seem to only insert humour for every other release (so, this wasn’t one that was funny), and nothing about it left any kind of impression. The whole thing felt kinda basic, pretty muted, and just.. standard.
Like another recent release by another favourite author, I think I’m getting off this train. Or at least the ARC list. I’d much rather wait for reviews, and borrow from my library, then be posting early about my disappointment or not knowing if it’s even one I’ll want to read in the end.
** I received an ARC from NetGalley and the publisher (thank you!) in exchange for an honest review. **