NaNoWriMo Day 6 – Finally able to sit down and write hopefully all the words! How’s everyone doing–writing wise?
THE FRIEND ZONE (Relationship Quo Series #2)
BY: NICOLE STRYCHARZ
Oh, bookish friends!
You know when you stumble upon an author that many people don’t know about, then you read their books and wonder, “WHY THE HELL DON’T MORE PEOPLE KNOW ABOUT THIS!?”
Yeah, get ready. I’m about to gush a bit because today’s release celebration is the third book I’ve read from this author and it seriously just keeps getting better and better!
Everything you think you know about what this story is going to be about at first glance is probably wrong. This story is so much more and is like nothing I’ve read that is remotely like any of its sister tropes.
Chloe: Moses has been my best friend since kindergarten. We met when I shoved him face first in the dirt and took his action figures. Ever since, we’ve been tighter than blood, but we’re not blood, and my body knows that. My heart has known that for years.
The fact that being a pole dancer has interfered with my relationship status is an understatement. Moses is literally the longest I’ve been with a man, except I’m not really ‘with’ him.
Now I’m approaching a place where I’m curious enough to tell him about my feelings. I’ve gotten close, but a man as hot as my bestie has had really small gaps between girlfriends. I know it could be a big mistake, and he’s never seen me that way, but I won’t know for sure unless I act, right? Only problem is, I might be too late again.
Moses: I’m not blind to the fact that my best friend is dangerously hot. She’s basically every man’s dream but she’s not mine. I’m the one that protects her, councils her, and encourages her, knowing she will do the same for me. She’s my girl.
But now something is different, and I can’t put a name to it. Something feels changed, but I’m putting all that on the back burner because I think I found my perfect girlfriend.
Still, Chloe is in my head; I’m not sure she would handle knowing that. After all, I’m in the friend zone…
Once again, another book by Nicole Strycharz sucks me in and never wants to let me go.
This is book two in the Relationship Quo Series but can be read as a standalone. In the first book, ‘The Divorce’, though that story was about Chris and Jenzy, we meet Moses and he pursues Jenzy until they finally enter a relationship. Now, in ‘The Friend Zone’, we meet his best friend, Chloe during the same timeline as when Moses meets Jenzy…see where this is going?
This story gripped my heart and had me in knots almost the entire time. What I love about Nicole’s writing is that she knows how to tell a full, emotionally rich story. Just like with ‘The Divorce’, other writers may take both story concepts and leave you frustrated and perhaps with a lack of closure (it’s happened to me with other writers and stories like these), and most times, by the end, I’m upset with one or both main characters, feeling like the writer didn’t convince me that one deserves the other. (Again, I’ve read books that have left me this way many times). But, nope, not Nicole! Every time I feared she would leave me without proper closure or that it’ll feel rushed and not truly resolved, chapters later and the conclusion of this story for both our main characters wraps up so perfectly.
Book one and two are such uniquely told stories. I have yet to read any similar tropes pull off such quality storytelling. So much happens and by the end, you feel like you’ve lived a full life with these characters.
Her characters feel so real to you. Chloe is a professional dancer; a pole dancer, folks–ex stripper! And all the stereotypes that come with that are thrown at her. You think you know her at first glance but she’s so much more. I loved Chloe’s strength and independence but she was also vulnerable, loyal, hopeful, even though life hasn’t always been good to her.
Then we have Moses and we see so much more of who he really is and his point of view of things during his time with Jenzy, from ‘The Divorce’. If you’ve read ‘The Divorce’, Nicole structured the timeline and story so perfectly. You get just enough from the previous book but so much more is new and fresh.
I don’t want to give spoilers! This was one hell of an emotional journey! I cried, I laughed my butt off, especially whenever her friend, Brianna was around (who is blind, spunky, and wonderful. I loved her character!) Another amazingly engaging and full of heart, sexy, and sweet story that will suck you in! Head over to Amazon and ONE-CLICK it! It’s only $0.99! It’s seriously SO. GOOD!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Nicole has been writing historical romance for over ten years. Her passion for history fuels the creativity for her novels and she finds the tools there to create a compelling plot.
However, she’s evolved into writing contemporary romance as well, with more modern stories to come.
“The Divorce” and “Meadow Creek” are both nominated in the 2016 Indie Book Awards! “The Divorce” also won second place in the 2016 Best Cover Design in ‘Urban Literature Magazine.’
Nicole lives in Virginia with her three children and their amazing Grandparents. She is always reading or working on the next book between mommyhood adventures.
I can not even begin to express my love for this book! From the moment I first saw the cover, I was already hooked and drawn into needing this story in my hands. ASAP. It’s probably my favorite cover from the WILLOW BAY STABLES SERIES.
Well, let me tell you, the content behind that cover most definitely did not disappoint either. What a beautiful, sweet, and gripping story of true love at it’s finest. Where love looks past the darkness one finds and embraces, hiding away from the world. Where that same love refuses to give up and bursts into the darkness with brilliant, blinding light.
Aurora Daniels is the bleeding heart of her family. With a gift and a passion for helping to heal others, she has a legacy of kindness and gratitude—a modern-day saint.
Every Sunday since she turned eighteen, Aurora has driven three hours into the city of Edmonton, Alberta, where she volunteers at an equine facility that rehabilitates troubled youth by working with horses. With their increasing success rate, the facility is expanding to foster violent parolees in hopes of a more effective release into society.
Assault with a deadly weapon and attempted murder—that’s what it says under the name on his sheet. Rhys White is released on good behaviour and promises to remain under contract for community service at the Equine for Hearts facility for a court-ordered period of twelve months.
Willow Bay’s saint may have stumbled across the one sinner who can’t be saved from himself.
Will Aurora be able to rein in Rhys’s quest for revenge before it’s too late? Or will she spend the rest of her life loving a man behind bars?
MY REVIEW –
My goodness, this book. This book and its characters. This book was poetry in the dark.
From the very beginning, you are gripped and tossed into a scene of such sadness. You’re left with a glimpse of a moment that haunts a man whose heart will take hold of you in ways that make your soul ache.
My goodness, Rhys White broke my heart. He made me want to just hold him in silence and never let go.
Rein In gives us the story of our third Daniels sibling in the Willow Bay Stables series. Each story in this series is beautiful in its own way. With this new installment, there was something so deep and tangible about the emotions between our two main characters. Aurora and Rhys take you on an emotional journey that constantly tugs at the deepest parts of your heart while leaving a soft, lingering smile almost after every interaction they have.
“A blonde girl in a sundress, with lips softer than a waterlily and the name of a princess, scared the ever-loving piss out of me.”
This story is the embodiment of romance. Get ready to be immersed both in the thick of darkness and the brilliance of the sun. Your heart will feel tight and bleed for this broken man, this broken soul. Then, your heart will sigh at the beauty the healing power of a genuine and innocent love can have.
“Someone with a light as bright as yours shouldn’t spend her days in the dark.”
Lifting my head, I let my hands find their way to either side of his hard jaw.
“Then let me show you the sun.” I sat up and my lips found his.
He met mine with a near decade of sorrow, and I took it.
I absolutely loved this story. I loved how in just a few chapters, Anne Jolin takes you through a full and complete journey full of poetry and depth. A story of love and redemption. I was most certainly #RuinedByRhys❤ Perfect fall read! Cozy up with a soft blanket, a warm cup of goodness and let your heart ache, sigh, and smile through Aurora and Rhys’ story.