Title: Ten Trends to Seduce Your Bestfriend
Author: Penny Reid
Publication Date: April 12, 2022
Sub-Genre(s): Contemporary, Slow-Burn
Summary: Winnifred Gobaldi and Byron Visser are not best friends.
Yes, they’ve known each other for years, but they’re not even friendly. Winnie considers them more like casual, distant acquaintances who find each other barely tolerable, especially when he’s being condescending (which is all the time).
The truth is, they have nothing in common. She’s a public school science teacher with stars in her eyes, and he’s a pretentious, joyless double PhD turned world-famous bestselling fiction author. She loves sharing her passion for promulgating women in STEM careers and building community via social media, and he eschews all socialization, virtual or otherwise. She’s looking for a side hustle to help pay down a mountain of student debt, and his financial portfolio is the stuff of fiduciary wet dreams. So why are they faking a #bestfriend relationship for millions of online spectators?
When a simple case of tit-for-tat trends between nonfriends leads to a wholly unexpected kind of pretend, nothing is simple. Sometimes, it takes a public audience to reveal the truth of private feelings, and rarely—very rarely—you should believe what you see online.—Goodreads
What I Liked: Penny Reid always manages to write books that have a lot of heart, tackle some serious issues with grace and aplomb, and make me laugh the entire time. I’m happy to say that this book held up to my very high expectations. Winnie and Byron are two people who are dealing with their own issues and realize that to truly commit to each other, they need to accept themselves for who they are. This book isn’t afraid to discuss issues you don’t normally see in romance novels like sensory processing disorders, the difficulties women face in STEM fields, and the societal pressure of losing one’s virginity. Normally I find myself frustrated when the issues between characters would be solved if they just talked to each other but the communication difficulties between Winnie and Byron made sense here. I loved the supporting characters and the depth and emotion they added to the story, especially Amelia as the friend stuck between both of them. We should all be so lucky to have a friend like her; someone who isn’t afraid to tell the hard truths when needed but gives you the space to figure things out on your own. The main conflict in the story felt real within this world, even if some of the situations were over the top. Overall the story was enjoyable and the characters were charming.
What I Didn’t Like: Despite not feeling like it, this book is very long, and I don’t think that any romance novel needs to be over 500 pages. As much as I loved these characters and the world they inhabited, I would rather their story be split into two books if needed. This is a very minor “issue” and more a personal preference.
Who Should Read It: Fans of slow-burn romances will love this book as there is enough heat and smoldering looks to keep the reader interested but the relationship takes its time until the satisfying conclusion. If you have never read a Penny Reid book, this would be a good place to start.
Review Wrap Up: This is a great story about how another person shouldn’t complete you but compliment you and be someone that brings out the best in you. At the end of the day, we’re all looking for someone to accept us for who we are while also wanting us to be the best version of ourselves and Winnie and Byron are a fantastic, fictional couple that embodies this. I was rooting for them from page one and never stopped.
Favorite Quote: “You are extraordinary.”