Note: This ARC was provided by the author via Give Me Books Promotions in exchange for an honest review.
Ooh! I do love it when an author switches gears and gives readers something new to fall in love with and fawn over, and that's what Carrie Aarons did with the release of All the Frogs in Manhattan, a romantic comedy set in, well, Manhattan, New York. The three other novels penned by the author that I've had the pleasure of reading--Blind Landing, Grasping Air, and On Thin Ice--were more angst-driven, the third one even having a healthy dose of suspense thrown into the romance. So, I was pleasantly surprised when I read the synopsis for All The Frogs in Manhattan, and because I already know that the author is more than capable when it comes to writing a thoughtful story with enticing characters, it was a no-brainer for me to see if she could, at the very least, make me smile. And yes, Carrie Aarons did indeed, along with making me actually laugh, even snort laughing a time or two.
At twenty-five, Gemma Morgan has gone through her fair share of frogs. You know, guys who make themselves out as princes, only to turn out to be full of warts that she'd rather not have anything to do with. She likes her job as a beauty editor at Femme and is living a pretty good life as a New Jersey transplant in New York. All she's looking for now is her Prince Charming, but that's easier said than done. When she nearly falls face first after a disastrous date with yet another frog, she's rescued by Oliver Anders. Another chance meeting leads to them hooking up, and even go as far as begrudgingly exchanging numbers. Soon, they're pretty much snarky friends with orgasmic benefits. After all, there's no way the thirty-year-old millionaire tech entrepreneur, California native could be "the one". He's a commitment-phobe. But soon, lines are pretty much obscured. Could Oliver be Gemma's frog prince?
Can I just say how much of a fabulous female main character Gemma was? She was a kickass young woman making her mark in her chosen field but she also had a tight-knit group of friends and had cool parents. She may be a woman who wants to be independent, but she also wants to have a man who loves her and will treat her like a princess while offering up his support as she spreads her wings. In short, she wants it all, and why shouldn't she? Now, Oliver, on the other hand--who shares the same name as my four-legged, furry baby which gives him bonus points--was sometimes an ass, but kudos to the guy for his honesty and being upfront most of the time. I say that because there does come a point where he was clearly lying to himself and should have confronted his feelings for our dear Gemma instead of acting like the jackass he was. Overall, though, I liked him because he was mostly real.
I adored this rom-com, and this would have easily netted a five-plus-star rating from me, except for one little hiccup. There's a weird moment in the story where Gemma and Oliver see each other in a fashion show, and it's as if the tables were, oddly enough, turned with as far as their perspectives on their non-relationship went. I can't get into more specific detail because spoilers, people, but yeah, that was the one thing that made me hold back on all out gushing over the book. I know this is a standalone, but I'm hoping that some of the more interesting side characters get their own stories told later on. I personally think that Archie and Sam--one of Oliver's closest friends in California and Gemma's best friend--would hit it off with their less than sunny outlook on love and relationships. I also hope Cody Jenkins gets his own much-deserved happily-ever-after. Five stars for All the Frogs in Manhattan. ♥
Release Date: 05 March 2017
Date Read: 05 March 2017
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