Published by GP Putnam on February 1, 2022
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance
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Beach Read meets The Flatshare in this warmly funny and delightfully sharp debut rom-com about a down-on-her-luck young woman who turns an innocent mix-up between a dating app and a roommate app into a new chance at love.
After getting passed over for an overdue—and much needed—promotion, Sadie Green is in desperate need of three things: a stiff drink, a new place to live, and a one-night-stand. When one drink turns into one too many, Sadie mixes up a long-ignored dating app for a roommate-finding app and finds herself on the doorstep of Jack Thomas’s gorgeous Brooklyn brownstone. Too bad she’s more attracted to his impressive real estate than she is to the man himself.
Jack, still grieving the unexpected death of his parents, has learned to find comfort in video games and movie marathons instead of friends. So while he doesn’t know just what to make of the vivaciously verbose Sadie, he’s willing to offer her his spare bedroom while she gets back on her feet. And with the rent unbeatably low, Sadie can finally pursue her floristry side hustle full-time. The two are polar opposites, but as Sadie’s presence begins to turn the brownstone into a home, they both start to realize they may have just made the deal of a lifetime.
I was incredibly excited for Lease on Love and even preordered the novel. Sadly, there wasn’t much that I really liked about it… and I found the novel lacking in depth in every aspect.
I thought Lease on Love would be right up my alley based on the synopsis but unfortunately, there really wasn’t very much plot for me to latch on to and I found myself really having to push myself to finish the book. The novel follows Sadie Green, who has just lost her promotion and job, but finds herself lucking out and moving into a very impressive brownstone for hardly any rent. She decides to stop pursuing a job in finance and open up her own floristry business, which has been a dream of hers since she was little. And honestly, that’s pretty much all that happens in this book but even this character development and journey to opening her business is glossed over.
There is of course the romance between Sadie and her new roommate, Jack. But I wasn’t sold on the chemistry between the two and their relationship was simultaneously insta-lovey and also incredibly dragged out. Despite having no attraction to Jack at all, Sadie is suddenly very interested in him after he gets a haircut. But we find out that, although Jack is also very interested in Sadie, he’s just not quite ready for a relationship. We find ourselves stuck in limbo for a good 100 pages where nothing happens, until Jack out of the blue decides that he’s ready. Sorry but if we’re going the slow burn route, there needs to be a flame of some sort. I’m not sure that there was even a small spark for me.
My main problem was with the characters. For me, they were very one-dimensional. Sadie didn’t really have a personality besides being slightly foul-mouthed and self-centred. The novel hinted at some childhood trauma that she endured, which left her thinking that she was a selfish and bad person, but this was never really explored at all. She spent most of the book going around telling her friends that she was a selfish person, to which her friends responded with “how could you think that?” While that’s all well and good, I expected some character development and exploration of this and it just wasn’t present even at the very end of the novel.
Jack, for me, had the personality of a dish rag. His character was so under-developed that he just came across as a rich person who is a bit of a hermit. I was actually super interested in Jack’s story, especially because he was clearly still grieving the loss of his parents and had isolated himself from others because of it. Unfortunately, we never really got to see any specific instances of development. He was miraculously just ready for a relationship one day and miraculously doing things he hadn’t done before without any sort of explanation or exploration.
I think Lease on Love was a missed opportunity. It lacked in depth, in plot and in character development. I also found the writing to be quite average and the dialogue kind of bored me to pieces. But the novel does have high ratings on Goodreads, so perhaps it might be for you?
Rating: 2 out of 5
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