May 17, 2022
Blurb: After one wild night together, two complete opposites plan to stay firmly in the friend zone, but life has other plans in this delightful romantic comedy, perfect for fans of Emily Henry and Abby Jimenez.
As a successful book publicist, Imani Lewis works night and day to promote her authors. It’s her dream job, but she’s become a total workaholic. So when her grandmother invites her to stay for the summer as she recovers from surgery, Imani happily agrees. But being back in the same small town as her one-night stand may not be quite the relaxing break she envisioned…
Zander Matthews wakes up every day determined to enjoy the present because he knows from his time in the Marines that tomorrow isn’t guaranteed. But he’s never gotten over the beautiful woman who blew through town a year ago, then disappeared. And he doesn’t want to be hurt again. So they agree to a deal: he’ll help Imani fix up her grandmother’s house as long as they stay firmly in the friend zone.
Whether it’s repairing tiles in his ceramics studio, dodging nosy neighbors, or soothing the most obnoxious parrot ever, Zander never fails to make Imani laugh. And soon their friendly banter is turning ever flirtier. But since Imani’s stay is temporary and Zander can’t be tied to anything beyond the most tenuous plans, will she be able to handle it when things get all fired up?
Quickie Review: All Fired Up by Dylan Newton is a cute little romance about a book publicist, Imani, and a former Marine now artist, Zander. While this is the second in a series and will be noticeable if you’re a series reader, it was fine as a standalone (I hadn’t read the first). Some of the dialogue is bouncy and fun, and Zander is a great main character (funny, sweet, thoughtful) but the story is frequently not quite as bouncy nor fun. The romance is slow-burn (doesn’t affect my feeling toward the novel; sometimes slow-burn is the best burn) without much spark between the characters. I did find the title questionable considering the female MC’s beloved mother died in a fire.
Your mileage may vary.