Title: Undercover Bromance (Bromance Book Club #2)
Author: Lyssa Kay Adams
Publication Date: March 2020
Liv Papandreas has a dream job as a sous chef at Nashville’s hottest restaurant. Too bad the celebrity chef owner is less than charming behind kitchen doors. After she catches him harassing a young hostess, she confronts him and gets fired. Liv vows revenge, but she’ll need assistance to take on the powerful chef.
Unfortunately, that means turning to Braden Mack. When Liv’s blackballed from the restaurant scene, the charismatic nightclub entrepreneur offers to help expose her ex-boss, but she is suspicious of his motives. He’ll need to call in reinforcements: the Bromance Book Club.
Oh, this was a disappointing read. For a romance novel it wasn’t what I’d classify as ‘awful’ but it definitely did not meet the expectations I’d set after reading the first book in this series – The Bromance Book Club. My excitement after hearing that Mack (sweet and delightfully arrogant Mack) was going to be the lead in Undercover Bromance was high. It’s such a shame this book was ultimately a let down for me.
FIRST OFF: The things I actually liked…
Adams’ writing was full of entertainingly witty banter, especially between the book club members, and was relatively easy to read. The story flowed with a decent pace and the side characters, as well as glimpses of the first book’s characters Gavin and Thea, kept me engaged in the story.
Mack was such a sweetheart in this. Yes, he was a bit arrogant and clueless when it came to giving women what they really wanted – opening up and being vulnerable – but he more than made up for this in other areas. His open-mindedness, constant consideration of others and general charming manner had me sighing with joy.
SECONDLY: The things I didn’t like…
LIV. Plain and simple she was just a very abrasive and rude character. She had suffered in the past from issues with men after having a poor father figure BUT in my opinion this did not grant her the right to be a total di** to Mack at almost every point in the book. He honestly deserved so much better, especially as most of the time her anger was directed at his attempts to help (*eye roll*), and if it wasn’t for Liv’s personality this would have been a highly enjoyable read.
The inclusion of an undercover op in this story was meant to add to the suspense aspect of the book club’s current book selection however, the inclusion of this arc in the story was not seamless. It read as cumbersome and the investigation did not seem to flow naturally with the romantic plot line. Instead, the investigation felt included ad-hoc where needed to force the two main characters together. Otherwise, it was overdone and not a feature of the book I overly enjoyed.
Lastly, Adams’ pace and fab characters (with the exception of Liv) were great! I like that this book could potentially have been read as a stand-alone and for those not keen on Liv in book one I’d recommend skipping this and jumping straight in to Gavin’s (he’s Mack’s tech-genius friend) story in book 3. We don’t learn much about Gavin in book 2 so there’s no real loss there.