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Genre: New Adult | Contemporary Romance
Read Count: 1
Source: My shelves :)
My Rating: 2 stars
Description: Children’s librarian by day. Romance novelist by night. British single father.
Someone else is writing this love story…
Blair Walton isn’t your average curvaceous tattooed children’s librarian. She’s also one half of bestselling romance author, Scarlet Rose. Along with her BFF Raine, she spends her nights writing books so steamy, she’s afraid they would shock her Southern conservative grandmother to death . . . if she knew about them. That’s why she and Raine write in secret.
On deadline for their latest book and out of ideas, Raine suggests (demands) that Blair find a guy and “do some research”. Declan Bennet has all the qualifications: He’s British, looks fabulous in a suit, has glorious blue eyes and gets bonus points for being an amazing single dad to his adorable son, Drake. But what starts out as a research project quickly turns into something much more. And Blair’s not the only one with secrets.
Unwritten started out with a great idea: a curvy, tattooed children’s librarian who co-writes erotic romances with her best friend under the pen name, Scarlet Rose. But from there, it just fell flat.
The book opens up with the heroine, Blair, and her BFF/Platonic Life Friend/roommate Raine working on their next book, stuck for ideas. Raine’s solution? Have Blair ask out that hot dad she sees at work for more inspiration!
Cue Mr. Tall, Dark, Handsome and British, aka Declan Bennet. Mr. Perfect is a rich businessman, investment supervisor, college graduate and current MBA student at an unnamed Ivy League school – and he’s only 23 years old with a three-year-old kid and a divorce. Um. Declan was the quintessential “perfect” boyfriend. He checked off every single box for the Book Boyfriend. Mr. Perfect had absolutely NO FLAWS and honestly, if the heroine mentioned what his “perfect British accent” did to her ONE MORE TIME, I was this close to putting her through the meat grinder.
The problem is, Mr. Bennet was so perfect, that he was absolutely boring. He came off as flat, one-dimensional, and robotic. He did one small thing wrong (which I did not think was a small thing at all, mind you) and Blair just brushed it off, coming clean about the fact that Raine did a background check on him before their date (something that causes her a lot of angst and anxiety about the entire book – something I thought was smart and not a big deal) and was like “we all make mistakes” (essentially). UGH
The savior of the book (beside Drake, Declan adorable three-year-old) was Raine. She was funny, quirky, and a lot out there. But her characterization did not do her much justice, either. Despite her being one of my favorite parts, Raine seemed like a compilation of BFF memes and Chelsea M. Cameron’s dream best friend. She was one snarky one-liner after another and though she offered some amazing comic relief, she was also pretty one-dimensional and flat, with all of her and Blair’s conversations being boring and useless.
Cameron had a lot of *wink wink nudge nudge* commentary between Raine and Blair about what it means to be a writer, but I soon got tired of the coffee runs and the *wink wink nudge nudge*s about writers and yoga pants and the falling asleep on their laptops and the *wink wink nudge nudge* about how writers are really schizophrenics with people talking to be people in their heads. Did that run-on sentence make you exhausted like it made me exhausted reading about it and then writing about it? At one point, I just wanted to scream that I get it, you’re a writer writing about writers and you want to get every single thing in there about writing habits. I GET IT STOP OKAYY???
While I’m talking about it, being a romance writer seemed to be Blair’s dirty little secret. I mean, it was her secret, but it came across that she kept it a secret because it was something she was ashamed of. Anytime she even thought of telling her family that she was a writer, it wasn’t about coming out and saying “Hey, I’m a bestselling published romance novelist, love you bye”, it was “hi I write smut for a living, are you proud?” Just the way Blair discussed it with herself or Raine or Declan, it just seemed like something she was embarrassed about and I don’t know where that came from.
Be forewarned of ridiculous Insta-Love Romance!! I already talked about how much I did not enjoy Mr. Perfectly Boring, but I did not mention the Insta-Love. Yes, I can see you shaking your head. While they didn’t share the L-Word until the last page (yes – “love”, “like”, take your pick), it was very obvious from the beginning they both fell hard and fast. Declan stated at the beginning of their relationship that he was not interested in a serious relationship because he still had hang-ups from his marriage. But the entire time was “I love this about you, I love this about you, I love this about you.” just so you know, a casual relationship doesn’t say presents in the form of books each time you see each other, “just thinking about you” texts/calls and wanting to meet each other’s grandmother and parents! Casual-sex partners don’t support each other at funerals and come over just to hold you when you cry. Not a thing, guys. The immediate trust and sharing of deep-dark secrets aren’t indicative of casual-sex partners, either, and I wasn’t buying it.
There were so many opportunities for this cliché romance to have something interesting happen – the library caught on fire, the jealous nanny, beloved grandmother dying – and nothing happened! Finally, in the end, I had thin hopes for the knock-down, drag-out fight that always happens in contemporary romances, and it was ignored!! Declan revealed that he cheated on his ex-wife, ending their marriage (his reason being “I don’t know what happened) and Blair immediately forgave him because she had this deep dark secret that was causing her endless grief and anxiety the whole book that she revealed in kind. That deep-dark, soul-destroying secret? Raine did a background check on Declan before their date. Which I didn’t think was a big deal, I thought it was safe and smart, actually. And his cheating was swept under the rug with a “we all make mistakes” and eventually they move in together and say that L-word.
*end of spoiler section*
The biggest problems I had with this book were the one-dimensional, under-developed characters, the fact it was one giant cliché and the lack of anything of substance. Unfortunately, I would not recommend this book. I went into it not expecting much, just a fluff romance to pass the time, and I didn’t even get that. Check out my Goodreads review to get a comprehensive ranting list of all my likes and dislikes of this particular novel. Will I read something else by this author? Probably not. I read a lot of reviews by fans of this author that said this one was a horrible, disappointing fluke. Despite that, I will probably not pick something else up by this author. The irony of this book is Cameron has Blair and Raine struggling with their own one-dimensional, perfectly imperfect, and boring characters – if only Cameron had been able to fix that the way her characters did!
Have you read UnWritten? What did you think? Have you read anything recently that you were excited for, but turned out to be a flop? Let me know in the comments below, I’d love to hear from you!
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