Review by Veronica

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“Chill bumps race down my arms and something weird happens to my stomach. My brain and my body are not on the same page. I might talk a big game when it comes to flirting and men and whatnot, but I’m panicking here!”

Better than Fiction is a fun and smart rom-com that is the perfect book for any romance bookworm.

As a self-proclaimed book hater and a firm believer that the movie is always better, Drew Young didn’t anticipate inheriting her grandma’s bookstore, the Book Nook. She’s in way over her head even before the shop’s resident book club, comprising seven of the naughtiest old ladies ever, begin to do what they do best–meddle.

Bestselling author Jasper Williams is a hopeless romantic. When he meets Drew at his Book Nook signing event, he becomes determined to show her the beauty of reading. He curates a book bucket list in exchange for her help exploring the local Denver scene for his current manuscript. From river rafting to local restaurants, Drew begins to connect with Jasper in a way she only thought happened in fiction.

When messy family ties jeopardize the future of the Book Nook, Drew is caught between a bookshelf and a hard place. She’s reminded that real life isn’t always big dreams and sweeping romance. But Jasper is the plot twist she never saw coming and he’s writing a happily ever after just for them.

Y’all know that I love a book that has a bookstore in it! And this book lived up to all the romantic expectations I had for it. This book caught my attention because the main character Drew doesn’t like reading books, even though she owns a bookstore. In my mind, I thought that was such a unique twist to add to the overall story, and I wanted to see what Alexa would do with it. The story is this wonderful mix of witty dialogue, fabulous friendships, family drama, and spicy romance. I really just enjoyed reading this story; everything made my romantic bookish heart happy. 

There are really two love stories in this book, the one between Drew and Jasper and the other between Drew and books. Drew’s hatred for reading comes off strong at the beginning of the book, and as a bookworm, I felt this need to find a book that she could connect with. This dislike of reading and books stems from childhood issues and hating that books can make you believe that happy endings are always possible. For me, I love and will only read a book with a happy ending. I really never thought of a happy ending being a bad thing. But listening to Drew’s thoughts on the matter opened my eyes to why sometimes a perfect happy ending isn’t always the best for a book. Drew’s character has tremendous emotional growth around her work and relationship with books. I loved watching Drew slowly start to fall in love with reading and getting excited about talking about books. I thought Jasper’s approach to opening up Drew to the wonderful world of books was cute and brilliant at the same time.  

The romance between Drew and Jasper is wonderful and will have you swooning. There are plenty of fun, cute moments and moments of pure embarrassment. Jasper is such a delight, and I adored the fact that he was a romance writer. There was this instant chemistry between these two, and it was fun and steamy watching them explore Colorado together. 

Better than Fiction is a swoonastic rom-com!

Thank you, Berkley Publishing Group, for the ARC in exchange for an honest review.