Review – Mr. Right There All Along by Jackie Braun

Publisher: Harlequin Romance
Publish Date: August 2nd
How I got this book: NetGalley

Could her best friend be her best match?

The one thing Chloe McDaniels has always depended on is her friendship with Simon Ford. Even if it’s been tough thinking of the gorgeous guy who makes her heart flutter as just a friend! But now, with their upcoming high school reunion dredging up memories of bullies and broken hearts, she needs him more than ever.

As Chloe plans to unveil her new–and–improved self, Simon creates a plan of his own.

Step One: Show her that love is worth the risk.
Step Two: Give her the happy–ever–after she deserves.
*Blurb from Goodreads*

There isn’t much I love more than a great friends to lovers story. I don’t know what it is about it, but this trope always manages to suck me in and keep me reading to the very end. I just love it. While Mr. Right There All Along had a great premise, great potential – it was just average.

Chloe and Simon have been best friends forever. They’ve always had each other’s backs and continue to be there for each other day in and day out. When they both get a notice for their high school reunion, Chloe freaks out. She had an awful high school experience, and isn’t looking to go back and face her old fears. But Simon knows she needs to and presses her to attend.

Simon has always had a thing for his best friend, and it’s getting harder and harder to keep it from her. He never wants to lose her friendship, and worries that if they take things to a relationship level, their friendship might be ruined. He frets over the right decision to make, finds himself kissing her at every turn, and finally realizes that she is what he always wanted.

This book was actually somewhat bland for me. There were no great moments, nothing spectacular that really drew me in. The writing was well executed, the characters developed, there just wasn’t that extra something that engaged me and pulled me into the story.

The romance itself wasn’t especially abundant in this book. Sure, Chloe and Simon shared a few steamy kisses, but as far as the heat level, that was about as hot as it got. The vast majority of the book dealt with their friendship slowly evolving from friends to friends who kissed. To friends who thought about said kiss day and night to friends who decided they were in love. It was slow paced and not super exciting, more like comfortable and laid back.

Chloe’s journey to self acceptance was almost chick-lit in nature. Much of the book was regarding her need to accept her inner beauty, struggle with self imagine and taking charge of her life. While I enjoy a women’s empowerment as much as the next gal, to me it just doesn’t provide the kind of reading experience that is exciting. So while Chloe’s self discovery was a great underlying storyline, it didn’t really add anything to the overall story for me.

All in all Mr. Right There All Along was a friends to lovers book with all the right ingredients, just missing short on the final product. I just wished it would have had… more. The story was just very average across the board. It wasn’t exceptional, and it wasn’t bad either. It was just… average.

I give this a C

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