Anyone But Her by Erica Lee

Like snuggling under your favourite fluffy blanket on the couch

What was the book about?
Reagan Cooper has been an out and proud lesbian since high school, but can’t say no when her gay best friend, Jamie Miller, asks her to pretend to be his girlfriend for his family reunion. Jamie has been there for her through everything. Plus, she’s interested in learning more about the family he never speaks of.

Living in California for eight years, Charlie Miller has been able to live authentically, but being back in her small Maryland hometown with her conservative family means going back into the closet. What she didn’t expect was to be so attracted to her brother’s girlfriend.

This particular fauxmance trope of fake girlfriend for gay best friend has been done previously. Robin Alexander’s Temporary Girl springs to mind. In Anyone But Her, the lesbian goes to a family event as the girlfriend of the gay best friend because the family of said best friend doesn’t know he’s out.

Featured Tropes: Fake-romance, closeted, homophobia family, falling for the unexpected person, coming out.

Book Strengths:
Families are weird, and we’ve all got stuff in our own that when we try to explain it to other people, they generally wear a completely understandable WTF? expression. Jamie and Charlie’s family is that family. Lee does well in creating a very good opportunity for us to say, WTF? The MCs are shown with their flaws which is refreshing. There are some really good secondary characters, like the grandmother. (I want more of the Gran. She’s fabulous).

Book weaknesses:
The novel is short in length, and this is probably the main weakness. There’s a slightly rushed effect that wouldn’t have occurred if another 10,000 words had been added, and therefore certain story arcs could have been further developed.

Character Chemistry:
Reagan and Jamie’s best friend connection is lovely, and we believe the depth built from years of knowing each other. The event at the end pushes that friendship to its limits though, and it was interesting to see them resolve it. Reagan and Charlie have an instant chemistry, which keeps getting stoked. Fun to watch that unfold.

Heat Rating: 4

It’s a light, fluffy, feel good romance, with just enough tension to create a good what-if? will they? ending.

Star Rating: 4 stars

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