When his younger brother loses interest in online dating, hot, bearded, bartender extraordinaire, Joe Collins, only intends to log into his account and shut it down. Until he reads about her.
Alex Parks is funny, friendly, and pretty much everything he’s been looking for in a woman. And in no time at all they’re emailing up a storm, telling each other their deepest darkest secrets… apart from the one that really matters.
And when it comes to love, serving it straight up works better than with a twist.
If there is one thing you can always count on when reading a Kylie Scott book is that there will always be sarcastic zingers and a level of authenticity that will have you wishing the characters were real people. There is no exception to this book. There are plenty of sarcastic quips to go around and characters you will wish you could hang out with in real life.
Alex Parks prefers to keep to herself in the comfort of her own home where life is easier and safer but when she starts up a conversation with who she thinks is Eric Collins on a dating site, she starts to fall for the guy on the other side of the screen. With encouragement from her best friend she decides to surprise her online confidante and meet him in person. She figures if anything they could at least have a one-night fling to satisfy their curiosity. However, when she shows up to surprise Eric she learns he isn’t the man she’s been talking to, flirting with and connecting to on a deeply personal level. It is all been a lie.
Joe Collins is used to living in his brother Eric’s shadow and used to cleaning up his messes but this time it is him who has created a mess that he has to clean up and he isn’t used to being on this side of a situation. Joe is used to being the nice guy that puts everyone else’s needs and feelings ahead of his own. It is that empathic need to make everyone else happy, that need to always say yes that has left Joe feeling empty and has him looking for an outlet to let his real feelings out. He finds that outlet on accident on a dating account he had set up for Eric. Joe never had the intention of lying to Alex or pretending to be someone he wasn’t but when he saw her messages he was enamored by her quick wit, friendly banter and creativity. He didn’t plan on getting so deeply wrapped up in their conversations nor taking it beyond the internet but now that Alex has showed up, in real life, he has to face up to his actions and find a way to prove to her that he isn’t the jerk she thinks he is.
Joe and Alex are a perfect couple. They bring to the relationship exactly what the other one needs. Alex needs someone to teach her how to step out of her shell and live beyond her comfort zone. Joe needs someone to teach him how to say no and go after his dreams. I enjoyed the banter between Alex and Joe. Alex is awesome and I could see myself hanging out with her. She really didn’t take crap from anyone. Joe is so sweet and always underestimating his value. I was glad he got the happy ending he deserved and Eric is FINALLY growing up and realizing his actions have consequences that affect others. I can’t wait to see what woman eventually walks into his life and truly puts him in his place. It was nice to see how everyone else in the Dive Bar world is doing and nice to see things finally coming to a better place for some of the characters that were facing some stressful and sad situations. It was also great to get a quick glimpse into where the Stage Dive crew is at in their lives!