Today's my stop on the CLP Blog Tour for Between Friends by Amanda Cowen. I wanted to read this one because I'm always interested in the boy-and-girl-are-friends-and-realize-they're-in-love-with-each-other stories. While this book missed the mark on a few things, it was an overall enjoyable read.
Here's the synopsis:
The only way to have a friend is to be one…especially between the sheets…
When neurotically challenged and unlucky in love Megan Daniels, is propositioned by her life-long friend Ben Romano with a coin toss (heads, they sleep together, tails they don’t) the night before they are about to attend a destination wedding, she drunkenly accepts his challenge. But when Megan wakes up the next morning with a bad hang-over and Ben in her bed, she is more than mortified. It isn’t until the tropical heat begins to ignite emotions Megan never ever believed she could possibly have, that she starts to question if risking their friendship is the answer to finding true love.
I had a couple of issues with this novel. Some of the dialogue didn't feel right and there were several instances of too many adjectives and descriptions. I don't think it's just me but when I'm talking to someone, I'm usually using contractions (hell, I'm using them right now). You probably don't usually say "I will be there in twenty minutes", instead you'll use "I'll". I completely get using those when you're writing an essay or report but it doesn't really translate well to a novel. It doesn't flow. As for the descriptions, if I had to hear about the tight t-shirt over Ben's muscular chest one more time I may have tossed my kobo (gently, of course). The final thing that irked me was that I had no idea why Megan was (still) friends with Jessica, Stephanie, and Michelle. It didn't seem like they had anything in common except for being friends for years and I sometimes felt like Megan didn't even like them. The story wasn't really about her friends but I always appreciate a good cast of secondary characters and these ones just didn't do anything for me.
I did like the main plot of the story, though. I was able to get a good sense of Megan's emotions because of the way Cowen wrote. Sure, there were times I thought she was being an idiot and that she was totally clueless to how Ben actually felt about her, but I can understand that she was trying to navigate her way through an incredibly tricky situation. I was constantly rooting for her and Ben.
I liked that the book took place, for the most part, in Costa Rica. It added a little bit of exotic flavour to the overall novel. Now, I do admit that Costa Rica wouldn't be first on my list for a destination wedding but to each her own. The setting allowed for some entertaining and unique moments and I appreciated that.
Overall, I liked Between Friends but I think I could have loved it if the secondary characters weren't so ridiculous and the writing was polished just a bit more. Amanda Cowen wrote an entertaining novel and while I didn't love this one I will definitely check out what she writes next.