Monday, October 14, 2019

The Stand-In by Lauren Campbell


Ten months ago, my kiss saved him from jail. Now, it's his turn to save me.

But when it's time to go our separate ways, he makes me an offer I can't refuse–an interview with my dream company and ten grand in cash.

All I have to do is pretend to be his girlfriend for the week.

Easy peasy.

It isn't until he takes me home to meet the parents that I realize he left out some MAJOR details.

But there's too much at stake for me to back out now. I MUST play the part.

Only ... it won't be quite the one he's expecting.

Worst Fake Girlfriend: Scene 1, Take 1.


REVIEW by Kelly:

To be honest, I’m not even sure where to begin. My mind is BLOWN!! Lauren deviates from her first two books that were more psychological fiction/romance (and were OUTSTANDING!!!) to bring us a rom com…. wasn’t expecting that. I’m a huge lover of romantic comedy, it’s one of my favorite genres. There is just something about watching someone fall in love while laughing my head off. It just leaves me with a smile on my face and ooey-gooey-ness dripping from my pores and honestly, I like feeling that way. 

I opened up the book (love the pop art cover!!) and from the first paragraph I was pulled in. We meet Tess who seems to have a knack for getting herself into some unusual, albeit hilarious, situations. She’s feisty, headstrong, and a little bit vindictive. Ten months ago, she met a guy…. if you could call it that, and basically saved him from getting arrested. (There was just a “little” bit of an obsessive, fantasy crush happening after that, but that doesn’t matter…much) Now, she sees him again, only this time she’s the one who needs a rescue. He comes across as a douche, the complete opposite of what she saw in him before, but she manages to wrangle a ride home from him after her car breaks down. What she doesn’t expect is the proposition that he tosses her way. Act as his girlfriend, who is madly in love with him, for a week filled with his family and holiday “togetherness”. Ten grand in cash and an interview at her dream job is the bait that he dangles in front of her face. Easy decision, right? She dusts off her shoulders and grabs her acting hat and off they go. Everything is fine and dandy until she meets his parents…. BAM! Plot twist. He left a few minor details out about this situation that he dragged her into. It’s too late for her to back out now and that cash and job are a major incentive to pull up her pants and wade through the crap that has been dropped right in front of her. Enter payback. The agreement was to “keep her mouth shut and pretend to be in love with him.” He never said how she had to go about that. A little evil slithers out as she decides to be the worst fake girlfriend anyone has ever seen. She will meet the requirements he laid out and laugh all the way to the bank. Best plan ever!!!

I can’t even with Lauren. This was FANTASTIC!! I can’t tell you how many times my husband looked over at me like I was a crazy loon because I couldn’t stop the obnoxious laughter from escaping my mouth. He once even asked me if I smelled something foul…apparently, I was cringing…hard. (see explanation below) I have read plenty of rom com’s through the years and while I adore them, there haven’t been that many that managed to make me bust out in uncontrollable giggles. The banter between the characters is perfect and I have no idea how Lauren managed to create the ridiculous and entertaining circumstances these characters find themselves in, but she does a remarkable job of it. There is a little scene with Tess coming out to the pool… brilliant!! I would also be remiss if I didn’t mention Pepper, the little demon Chihuahua that gives us a few chuckles. There are so many situations in this story where you just can’t contain the laughter. Then there are times where evil Lauren pops out like the puppet master she is and yanks hard on the strings of our souls…I confess, I definitely cursed her for this. WARNING!!! Around 61% of the book (enter my cringing and foul-smelling face from above) you will want to close it, put it down. Walk away for a few minutes if you must but CARRY ON!! YOU WILL NOT BE SORRY!! Don’t DNF this story because you’ll miss out on some obnoxious situations, shrieks of laughter, a serious “What the…” moment, and complete fulfillment at the end. 

This is a HUGE 5 STARS for me. I waited patiently for this book to come out and I was rewarded for my restraint. The Stand-In is a must read if you love hilarious situations, a little bit of crazy and can handle Lauren jerking you around. It’s unique and honestly just a FANTASTIC FREAKING READ!!!

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