Review: The Wall of Winnipeg and Me by Mariana Zapata

Posted July 16, 2020 by Kate

Review: The Wall of Winnipeg and Me by Mariana ZapataCheck out on Goodreads | Buy on Amazon
Genres: Adult, Contemporary Romance
Also by this author: Dear Aaron,
Publisher: Createspace Independent Publishing Platform
Source: Kindle Unlimited

Vanessa Mazur knows she's doing the right thing. She shouldn't feel bad for quitting. Being an assistant/housekeeper/fairy godmother to the top defensive end in the National Football Organization was always supposed to be temporary. She has plans and none of them include washing extra-large underwear longer than necessary.
But when Aiden Graves shows up at her door wanting her to come back, she's beyond shocked.
For two years, the man known as The Wall of Winnipeg couldn't find it in him to tell her good morning or congratulate her on her birthday. Now? He's asking for the unthinkable.
What do you say to the man who is used to getting everything he wants?

I first read The Wall of Winnipeg and Me a couple of years ago, and honestly don’t remember much about that first reading experience. But when I reread it this July (in preparation for Zapata’s newest release, HANDS DOWN), I was completely hooked in and blown away by the masterful writing.

First of all… I feel I should start with the details surrounding my reread of this book. It was 11:30pm. I had to get up “early” the next morning (read: 9am) to finish a work project before my shift at my day job, where I worked until 11pm. Busy day! So I just wanted to read a few chapters, and had been peer-pressured high encouraged to read more Mariana Zapata by my Instagram friends! So I thought I’d take a gander at the beginning of The Wall of Winnipeg and Me. Next thing I knew, it was 3:30am and I was just going to finish that chapter. THEN I HEARD MY DAD WAKE UP TO GO FEED THE DOG. At 6am!! Goddamn it!!

“He was lucky I had a tiny, itty, bitty crush on him;
otherwise, he would have got the shank years ago.”

So. ? I should have known better. Dear Aaron by Zapata had me up until 4:45am earlier this year – twice this year! It should be noted that I never reach that 4am mark, I’m always zonked before then, and really it’s rare I’m up past 2am. ANYWAY. This book follows Vanessa, the personal assistant to Aiden Graves, a celebrity football player, and she is ready to quit and move on with her life. Except… a marriage of convenience, roommates and friends-to-lovers romance ensue in the most EPIC slow burn that only Mariana Zapata can master. Remember Lady Luck by Kristen Ashley?? Yeah, I’m about to reread that, too, now.

Aiden is my new book boyfriend of the year. Hands down!! (Which is ironically the title of the sequel book ???) He’s quiet and curt, which drives Vanessa loves but I love!!! And can we talk about the nicknames, “Big Guy”?? I melt. “Muffin” LOL. Vanessa, Van, was just a breath of fresh air, honestly. She’s fun and passionate, and has a feisty, sassy side (especially when Trevor is around) but has a big heart and is still very practical.

“I would have done just about anything for you back then, even when you got on my nerves. I might have just waited until the last minute to push you out of oncoming traffic, but I’d still push you out of the way.”

But I could talk about the characters all day, and really I just want you to go read this book!! The connection between the two… GOD ????? It was such an incredible slow burn!! It was such a natural connection, as they became a team, friends, trusted confidants, and then more ? They seriously broke my heart. This book genuinely makes me so happy and giddy, I’m fighting myself not to reread it!

I’m seriously wondering where I was at and what I was doing the first time I read this years ago that it didn’t make as big of an impact! Geez, Louise! I also loved the general lack of fluff. There was no drama for drama’s sake, and nothing was obviously created just to move the plot along. Instead, it felt super genuine, slow-burn-y, but also fairly quick-paced! She’s a magician. (Check out my review of Dear Aaron!! It’s also seriously good)

10.15.20 Update: I just reread this one again! I’ve been thinking about it with football season in full swing, and oh my gosh it just delivers absolutely every single time!! Aiden is one of my top book boyfriends. He’s so quiet (and sometimes surly), sure, but he’s a gentle giant. When he speaks, you listen, and he is just so sweet to Van (Vanessa, the MC). I  m e l t  for the two of them! One thing I really loved was their nicknames. “Muffin,” “Sunshine,” “Big Guy,” and even “Big Texas” for their friend, Zac! This book is a shot of fun, while also being really sweet. I love Van’s sassiness (even if she only reserves it for a select few) and just how real she is as a person. GOD I LOVE THIS BOOK ??

Other books you may enjoy…


Do you enjoy slow-burn romances? Have you read a book by Mariana Zapata? Let me know in the comments below, I’d love to hear from you!

2 responses to “Review: The Wall of Winnipeg and Me by Mariana Zapata

  1. Becca Grace

    I just read this a couple days ago and I have been dying to talk about it with someone!! If it’s possible, i’m head over heels in love with Aiden Graves. I feel like he’s one of the most intentional heros I have ever read. Everything he does and says has a purpose and like no word or action is wasted. I want there to be a book about his perspective because I would love to hear his thoughts. & I loved Vanessa. She’s the perfect amount of insecure but still really confident in who she is. I just love how realistic Mariana Zapata writes her characters. UGH. its probably one of my favorite books all time.

    • THANK YOU!!! Yes ?? Aiden truly is one of my top book boyfriend and Van was just so fierce, practical, but sassy and real!! This is the third time I’ve reread it this year ?? i agree about Aiden being so intentional – that’s one of my favorite things about him!! He’s…. ugh I want an Aiden ?

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