Published by St. Martin's Griffin on August 29, 2017
Source: the publisher
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With the heart and sass of a Susan Elizabeth Phillips novel and the humor and sexiness of bestseller Alice Clayton, That Thing You Do is a story of three friends who make a pact in high school that states that none of the girls will marry unless each one agrees with the match.
Greta is always the bridesmaid - and that's fine with her. She has no desire to date after a bad relationship left her reeling. Her friends aren't having that, though, and after yet another wedding, she finds herself being set up with the DJ. Deciding to save herself the trouble of an inevitable breakup, Greta orchestrates a series of fake dates designed to trick her friends into thinking she's putting herself out there. But Jon has plans of his own, and she never counted on the sparks that fly between them. Can a girl who doesn't believe in love find it in the least likely place of all?
I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
I love the fake boyfriend/girlfriend trope. I knew That Thing You Do by Kayti McGee would probably be a winner because of that trope and Kayti McGee’s trademark humor and I was right! Her stories (the ones that I’ve read so far) are lighthearted and fun, but they also have feeling. As it turns out, that is exactly what I’ve needed to usher me beyond a very busy past few weeks.
Greta has made a pact with her best friends Amy and Summer: none of them will get married unless all three are in agreement about the guy in question. Greta has been a bridesmaid tons of times, but she is nowhere close to settling down. The truth is: she loves being single. She loves her job as a live-in nanny. She loves Netflix and taking a relaxing evening bath with a good book. (Don’t we all?)
When Amy and Summer set Greta up with the cute DJ at a wedding they are all attending, Greta decides to make him her “fake boyfriend” to appease her friends for a while. But it becomes clear very soon that these two get along well and have great chemistry. Soon they are obviously falling for one another, but Greta stubbornly refuses to admit what is obvious to everyone else.
I read this book in matter of hours, which is exactly what I both wanted and expected. The blend of humor and romance is perfect which is what kept me flipping the pages so fast. There is also a teensy bit of serious thrown into the story by way of the family that Greta works for – but it isn’t too much. Just enough to keep it interesting. In fact, at about two-thirds through the story, when things started to get a little serious for one of the secondary characters: THAT’S when I think the book became its best. From then on, I read until my eyes burned, even walking around my house with my Kindle in my hand so I didn’t have to put the book down.
Even with the obvious HEA (because: look at the cover), Greta went on for ages with her steadfast insistence that her relationship with Jon was fake. At times, I wasn’t sure if she was refusing to admit that there was more to them, or if she just really couldn’t see it. It was almost a relief when the big conflict came near the end because I knew something would be changing soon, and I was hoping it would be with Greta’s train of thought. (Sometimes there is just no helping someone! You have to let them figure out things for themselves, even when it is painfully obvious and even when you know it hurts them.) Things resolved and everything turned out okay, but mercy, Greta took quite a path to getting there.
Can I just say that I loved the leading man, Jon? He’s a British DJ with fun mannerisms, great manners, and tons of patience. I love the way that he talks and the things that he says. He complements Greta very well. And he eventually stands up for himself in a way that I appreciate so much. I also love Greta’s young charge, Mina. She takes her job as a nanny more serious than anything else, it seems, and the love she feels for Mina is true. When everything goes down with Mina’s family, Greta does a great job of making sure that Mina feels is as little as possible. Even though kids-in-romances aren’t a favorite thing of mine: this one was great and furthered the story perfectly.
Given the cover of the book, I wasn’t expecting much of the ending to be the way that it was – BUT! I think that in keeping with the romantic comedy theme of the book, everything turned out well. This is a fun book for people that are looking for a quick, fun read with some humor in it. It gets bonus points for great book and TV show references.
Sidenote: I would love for this to be a series so Greta’s best friends get a chance to find their mutually-agreed-upon grooms!