Genres: Adult, Contemporary Romance
Publisher: G.P. Putnam’s Sons
Source: Libby (My Library app)
When your nemesis also happens to be your fiancé, happily ever after becomes a lot more complicated in this wickedly funny, lovers-to-enemies-to-lovers romantic comedy debut.
Naomi Westfield has the perfect fiancé: Nicholas Rose holds doors open for her, remembers her restaurant orders, and comes from the kind of upstanding society family any bride would love to be a part of. They never fight. They're preparing for their lavish wedding that's three months away. And she is miserably and utterly sick of him.
Naomi wants out, but there's a catch: whoever ends the engagement will have to foot the nonrefundable wedding bill. When Naomi discovers that Nicholas, too, has been feigning contentment, the two of them go head-to-head in a battle of pranks, sabotage, and all-out emotional warfare.
But with the countdown looming to the wedding that may or may not come to pass, Naomi finds her resolve slipping. Because now that they have nothing to lose, they're finally being themselves--and having fun with the last person they expect: each other.
Honestly… You Deserve Each Other leaves me at a bit of a loss. Because as much as I hated the beginning, making snipping comments in the margins and hating on it on Instagram… I freaking loved the rest.
You Deserve Each Other follows (and this is where I check my notes) Nicholas and Naomi, a couple gearing up for their marriage in a few short months. Except Naomi is miserable and sick of pretending that this relationship is #goals. She hates Nicholas and claims to only love Nicholas 40%, which slips down to about 18% a few paragraphs later. But turns out, Nicholas was just as unhappy in their sham of a relationship, and has been needling at Naomi, hoping to spark a reaction or for her to be the one to call off the marriage. Whichever works. Once Naomi figures it out, the jig is up and the war is on.
My engagement to Nicholas Rose is a game of chicken.
I hated this book in the beginning. The switch in tone from their second date to their sham of a relationship was jarring, and all of sudden there’s all these characters being name-dropped without introduction. The first 50-plus pages are Naomi talking about how awful their marriage is, how awful Nicholas is, and ugh it was just hard to read. It’s told in that frantic rom-com narrative that normally doesn’t bother me at all… but when it’s a whine-fest like this felt, it was hard.
So yes. At first, I hated it. Nicholas seemed like an awful, awful guy, and to be honest, I wasn’t that sure about Naomi, either. But everything starts to flip on its head when Nicholas pulled a move nobody expected and bought them a house. Although Naomi didn’t realize his motivations, it was a last-ditch effort to give them a second chance. Because in between the pranks, fighting and pulling the rug out from under each other’s feet… they started having fun, taking each other’s backs and seeing the real person behind the facades they’d gotten used to wearing.
I tried to keep him at a safe distance where he could only see the decent part sof me and it made us both miserable. I inadvertently let him in to see the ugly parts but instead of running away like I’d counted on him to do, he wrapped his arms around all of that ugliness and didn’t let go.
This is where I fell in love, HARD. I love a good forced proximity, hate-to-love romance (which this surely was), but the friends-to-love aspect was better. They’re sleeping in separate rooms, but slowly start to trust each other and become best friends before they’re willing to test their relationship muscles again. I loved watching these two build a foundation, and as much as I hated this book at first (and I mean HATED it)… they have an enviable relationship. And it’s funny! It didn’t take long for the matrimonial revenge and downright evil pranks to send me into giggles.
They became better than they ever could have been. They’re each other’s safe place. Each other’s best friends. Ms. Hogle wrote this descent into tender affection wonderfully, and this is one of the few romance’s I’ve read lately where I actually got it. Where I actually understood why they were together, why they liked each other, and even the beginning started to make sense to me. I loved this book. I loved the characters. loved their relationship (eventually), and hope to have one like it someday. Er, the second-half of their relationship. If you’re willing to tough it out in the beginning, this was a great read. But you just have to get past the DNF-standard stuff in the first bit.
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What’s a book you read that you didn’t quite like going in… but ended up loving? Let me know in the comments down below, I’d love to hear from you!