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Stage Smart

208449859.jpg d'Aly Stiles - SmartyPants Romance (à paraître le 18 avril)

Résumé : My record label had one rule… and I broke it.In my defense, “don’t fall in love with your producer” isn’t exactly fair when your producer is Val Andrews, a sweet, talented, totally genuine prince in an industry of egotistical frogs. It’s especially not fair when your forbidden crush becomes a constant temptation while on tour with a vengeful ex and an enigma named Chad. All I want to do is make incredible music and show the world I’m more than a vapid starlet. But when a cryptic memo reveals a sinister plot to destroy my career, it becomes clear there’s only one person I can trust—the one they said I can’t have.

Note : 2/5 ♥♥

Parmi les nouvelles sortie des SPR, c'est la romance qui m'a le moins plu pour le moment. Si le ptit couple est choupi, l'intrigue est ennuyeuse et ne fait absolument pas rêver. Je suis plus sensible à des héros qui ont des jobs du quotidien, plutôt que la pseudo Taylor Swift et son producteur xD

Larinda est une chanteuse de country à succès. Cependant sa vie professionnelle et même personnelle est dictée par sa maison de disque, pour des questions d'image et de marketing elle est obligée d'avoir une fausse relation avec un autre chanteur, Jarvis, qui se prend pour Mariah Carey. Mais Larinda est amoureuse d'un autre, Val, le jeune producteur qu'elle a réussi à imposer pour travailler sur son prochain album.

Alors que la tournée de concerts conjoints de Larinda et Jarvis commence, les problèmes aussi : Larinda découvre après tout le monde qu'on l'a fiancé à Jarvis.

De son côté, Val est en admiration devant le talent de Larinda, en travaillant avec elle, il a appris à découvrir la jeune femme qui se cache derrière le personnage public. Malheureusement, il manque grave de confiance en lui et n'imagine même pas un instant que ses sentiments puissent être réciproques.

Alors que Larinda et Val se rapproche, ce dernier découvre que Jarvis prévoit un scandale sur le dos de Larinda. Et c'est sans compter sur son tour bestie, Chad, que les machinations de Mister Diva vont être contrées.

Et heureusement que Chad est là, meilleur personnage jamais écrit *-* il orbite dans un autre monde, il sort des absurdités complétement barrées et au final son rôle est hyper important


Among the new SPR releases, it's the romance that I liked the least at the moment. If the little couple is cute, the plot is boring and absolutely not dreamy. I am more sensitive to heroes who have everyday jobs, rather than the Taylor Swift clone and her producer xD

Larinda is a successful country singer. However, her professional and even personal life is dictated by her record company; for reasons of communication and marketing she is forced to have a false relationship with another singer, Jarvis, who thinks he is Mariah Carey. But Larinda is in love with someone else, Val, the young producer she managed to get to work on her next album.

As Larinda and Jarvis' joint concert tour begins, so do problems: Larinda discovers after everyone else that she has been engaged to Jarvis.

For his part, Val is in awe of Larinda's talent, by working with her, he learned to discover the young woman behind the public persona. Unfortunately, he seriously lacks self-confidence and doesn't even imagine for a moment that his feelings could be reciprocated.

As Larinda and Val get closer, the latter discovers that Jarvis is planning a scandal behind Larinda's back. And it's without counting on his tour bestie, Chad, that Mister Diva's machinations will be countered.

And thank god Chad is there, best character ever written *-* he orbits in another world, he comes up with completely crazy nonsense and in the end his role is super important


Passing Notes

208449822.jpg de Nora Evely - SmartyPants Romance (à paraître le 25 avril 2024)

Résumé : When the one who got away moves in next door…

Clara Hill wants to be left alone. Sitting on her porch watching everyone else’s lives go by is way more fun than dealing with her own problems.Or at least that’s what she thought. Now that her secret high school sweetheart is her next door neighbor, she’s not so sure anymore.

Being back in Green Valley was hard enough without having her first love right there within touching distance.Especially when he’s so stubbornly determined to flash his unforgettable smile at her every chance he gets and reminding her of when she thought she’d found her happily ever after.

Once upon a time, Nick Easton thought he had it all.A football scholarship, his dream girl, and a future so bright he couldn’t wait to get started.But, like everything else in his life, it all came toppling down.Now he’s content to raise his kids, teach English, and coach football at Green Valley High.He has no time for things like romance, and dating, and starting over…He’s fine being alone. Who needs love ?

But when he catches a glimpse of his new neighbor his quiet little world turns upside down, lighting a fire that makes him determined to reclaim all he thought was gone forever.After all these years, can he convince Clara to give him another shot?Or will their love story stay hidden in their past?

Note : 5/5 ♥♥♥♥♥

Clara et Nick étaient adolescents quand ils ont eu le coup de foudre l'un pour l'autre, venant de milieux sociaux différents, ils ont tenu leur relation secrète. Un concours de circonstances (que je ne peux pas spoiler) les ont fait partir chacun de leur côté vivre leurs vies.

15 ans lus tard, leurs routes se croisent à nouveau et leur amour reprend vie, d'ailleurs ils n'ont jamais cessé de s'aimer. Ce roman raconte leur seconde chance, comment les blessures du passé affectent toujours les choix du présent et comment accepter ce qui ne peut être changé.

Je ne voudrais pas en révéler trop sur cette romance que j'ai beaucoup aimé, alors je ferais court pour une fois. L'auteur a su très bien mettre en place la tension romantique en Clara et Nick, on sent que ces deux-là sont faits l'un pour l'autre, c'est juste une histoire de temps et et communication.

Mention spéciale pour tous les personnages secondaires : les enfants de Nick qui sont adorables (de toute façon, c'est pas le propos d'avoir des gosses compliqués) ; les soeurs de Clara et spécifiquement Gracie ; et c'était pas mal de voir un peu l'évolution des soeurs Hill avec leur maman (dont on suivi les problèmes dans d'autres livres).


Clara and Nick were teenagers when they fell in love, coming from different social backgrounds, they had to keep their relationship a secret. A combination of circumstances (which I cannot spoil) made them each go their separate ways to live their lives.

15 years later, their paths cross again and their love comes back to life, but they have never stopped loving each other. This novel is about their second chance, how past hurts still affect present choices, and how to accept what cannot be changed.

I don't want to reveal too much about this romance that I really liked, so I'll keep it short for once. The author knew how to set up the romantic tension in Clara and Nick very well, we feel that these two are made for each other, it's just a story of time and communication.

Special mention for all the secondary characters : Nick's children are adorable (in thi story, there's no point of having complicated kids) ; Clara's sisters and specifically Gracie, and it was good to see the evolution of the Hill sisters with their mother (whose problems we followed in other books).


Nun Too Soon

208424713.jpg de Lissa Sharpe - SmartyPants Romance (à paraître le 18 avril 2024)

Résumé : Helen is just your normal, everyday librarian who writes romance novels on the side… except she also happens to be a former nun, new to life outside the order and to the dating scene. Helen isn’t just a virgin in her 30s– she’s never had a boyfriend, never kissed anyone, never even so much as held someone’s hand. Becoming a nun was always her path, until it wasn’t anymore, and trying to forge a new path in life has been…tricky.What isn’t tricky?

Her unrequited crush on the handsome library patron that Helen and her friends have affectionately nicknamed ‘The Red Unicorn’ -- a man who loves to read, looks great in glasses, and has red hair, aka Helen’s dream man. But the idea of dating is still intimidating, so Helen prefers to daydream about Thad from afar, turning him into her perfect romance novel hero.Thad is far from perfect, not like the smart, sexy librarian he’s been surveilling. Thad is a bounty hunter who’s determined to find Helen’s brother, Dean, and he’s certain Helen is the key to tracking Dean down. Thad never plans to approach Helen or insert himself into her life–until it becomes clear he’s not the only one looking for Dean.

The other people after him are bad news, and Helen’s going to get caught in the crossfire if Thad doesn’t intervene. As Thad and Helen work together to find Dean, they actually get to know each other, soon realizing that the perfect, ideal versions they have of each other couldn’t be more wrong… but that who they are together might actually be just right.

Note : 4/5 ♥♥♥♥

Helen est bibliothécaire à Chicago, elle mène une vie tranquille plutôt banale, mais celle-ci va changer lorsque Thad débarque. D’abord client de la bibliothèque, il lui révèle rapidement qu’il est en réalité un chasseur de prime à la recherche de son frère. Celui-ci est dans le pétrin et d’autres personnes moins scrupuleuses pourraient se servir d’elle pour le retrouver.
Helen est déçue que son crush sur sa Red Unicorn (Thad est roux) soit basé sur un mensonge mais décide de l’aider dans ses recherches à la condition qu’elle vienne avec lui. Leur proximité forcée va déboucher sur une alchimie muy caliente.

Ce que Thad ne sait pas (de suite) c’est qu’Helen est une nonne réformée. Dans la vie civile depuis quelques années, Helen n’a donc pas encore eu de relations amoureuses. Et l’un de ses grands challenges de vie est de connaître l’amour (au sens propre comme au figuré).

Vue ce pitch de départ, j’avais quand même un peu peur que ça soit un peu beaucoup une romance catho avec de la morale chrétienne par-ci par-là à toutes les sauces. Bon heureusement c’est pas le cas. Helen évoque plus certain aspects de son éducation dont elle a encore du mal à se détacher en lien avec ses problématique d’aujourd’hui : la te connexion avec sa féminité, la perception de son corps, son pouvoir de séduction sur Thad ^^. Et ce qui est plutôt cool, c’est qu’Helen va se donner des challenges à elle-même sans forcément prendre Thad en compte dans ses paramètres.

Thad de son côté va avoir beaucoup de chemin à faire car il ne part pas avec des bons points au début : toute sa famille est dans le business de la chasse à la prime et celle-ci a même fait l’objet d’une tv réalité. Il a une vision des gens hyper stéréotypée, pour lui personne n’est jamais totalement honnête, et tout le monde a un double discours et veut le berner ou obtenir quelque chose de lui. Et pour les femmes c’est encore pire, il balance quand même pas mal de remarques sexistes… il n’imagine pas qu’Helen n’a aucune arrière pensée pour le doubler quand elle insiste pour l’aider à retrouver son frère. Comme il va bien tomber de haut.

Heureusement pour les lecteurs, Thad et Helen sortent un peu des clichés de leur archétypes de personnages et nous donne à lire une romance roadtrip sympatique.


Helen is a librarian in Chicago, she leads a quiet, rather ordinary life, but this will change when Thad arrives. First a customer of the library, he quickly reveals that he is in reality a bounty hunter looking for her brother. He is in trouble and other less scrupulous people could use her to find him.
Helen is disappointed that her crush on her Red Unicorn (Thad is a redhead) is based on a lie but decides to help him in his research on the condition that she comes with him. Their forced proximity will lead to a muy caliente alchemy.

What Thad doesn't know (right away) is that Helen is a reformed nun. In civilian life for several years, Helen has not yet had romantic relationships. And one of his great life challenges is to know love (literally and figuratively).

Given this initial pitch, I was still a little afraid that it would be a bit much of a Catholic romance with Christian morality here and there in every way. Well fortunately that’s not the case. Helen talks about certain aspects of her education from which she still has difficulty detaching herself in relation to her current issues: the connection with her femininity, the perception of her body, her power of seduction on Thad ^^. And what’s pretty cool is that Helen will give herself challenges without necessarily taking Thad into account in her parameters.

Thad for his part will have a long way to go because he doesn't start with good points : his whole family is in the bounty hunting business and it was even the subject of a TV show. He has a hyper-stereotypical view of people, for him no one is ever completely honest, and everyone has double talk and wants to fool him or get something from him. And for women it's even worse, he still makes a lot of sexist remarks... he can't imagine that Helen has no ulterior motive for double-crossing him when she insists on helping him find her brother. How deep he’s going to fall.

Fortunately for readers, Thad and Helen break away from the clichés of their character archetypes and give us a nice roadtrip romance to read.