Review: The Virgin Next Door by Lauren Blakely (Dating Games #1)
Note: An advance reader copy (ARC) was provided by the author.
Lauren Blakely's got a new series, and while it kicked off a few weeks ago via a free prequel novella titled Mister Sexy Pants, the first full-length novel has just been released and is now out in the wild. The Virgin Next Door is a contemporary romance with some friends-to-lovers and employer-employee feels. Twenty-six-year-old Veronica Valentine loves working as a book editor for children's literature, but she's also got a secret side gig as a columnist known only as "Your Friendly Neighborhood Virgin". When she mistakenly sends her latest column about everything she'd like to do with "Mister Sexy Pants" to everyone at the publishing house she works at, it ends up with the column going viral while also costing Veronica her job. Luckily for her, she finds a new job at Bikes and Blooms. Unfortunately, her new boss is none other than twenty-nine-year-old Milo Dawson, aka Mister Sexy Pants. So, all that chemistry between them every single time together will have to be ignored, and Milo can never find out about her naughty column.
Whenever Lauren Blakely's got a new series, it's like going on a new adventure with a new group of people that I can get to know as the series moves forward, with each one in that recurring cast of characters having their book released. Experience has taught me that there are bound to be some familiar "faces" if you're an avid Blakely reader, but that's more of a bonus than anything else. Here, Veronica and Milo are truly the stars of this series starter, with supporting characters that pique one's interest but none of them trying to steal the spotlight away from these two. I liked seeing Veronica and Milo interact, going from friendly to flirty and back almost seamlessly. The complications in the form of Veronica working for Milo and her anonymous column, The Virgin Club, were not insurmountable nor were they laden in angst and drama, making for a lighthearted read. The Virgin Next Door is a four-starred start to an already promising new LB series.
Release Date: 12 August 2022
Date Read: 07 August 2022
Learn more about Lauren Blakely.