Overall Grade: ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️
If you’ve read any part of Monica Murphy’s The Callahans, then you’re conditioned to angsty, bully-esque romance with possessive, error-filled heroes and their patient, beguiling heroines. There are highlights in her The Callahans and The College Years stories, characters such as Tony, the calm, cool, and collected reliable friend of the guys. However, Murphy doesn’t make it easy on her readers as they move through those new adult, YA romances.
In her newest book, Making Her Mine, Murphy shockingly offers up a sweet story that feels like a fresh wind through this series. If you’ve read The Callahans, you’re familiar with Beck, the youngest Callahan, and Addie, Jocelyn’s younger sister. Beck and Addie have been mooning over each other for YEARS (since junior high). In this story, they’ve hit their senior year. Addie is finally single, and Beck is soon-to-be single. Murphy takes two sweet, very kind kids and gives them the love story that we should expect from the new adult romance genre.
See, here’s the thing. I love new adult or college romances even though I’m a middle-aged woman. However, I oftentimes struggle with the $exual prowess of young nubile teens. It never seems right for a time when most of us were awkward during our first time. And Monica Murphy gives us all of that in Making Her Mine. Both Beck and Addie are virgins, and they get to experience their firsts with each other. Even more, they don’t bully each other or anyone else. They simply love each other from afar, and once they acknowledge their feelings, they are DONE. There is very little angst in this romance (unlike Murphy’s other books in this series), and it ends where you think NA stories should end: with an HFN and the promise of a beautiful future for these teens who waited so long to be together.
Even more, what I appreciated about this story is its accurate exemplification of today’s Gen Z youth. What I appreciated about Making Her Mine is the exactness and awkwardness behind defining relationships in 2022. This is a real thing for Gen Z, and they have so many designations for the spectrum of relationships. Murphy shines in this throughout the book in a way that other Millennial (or Gen X) writers fail to capture in new adult romance. They oftentimes color this sub-genre in Gen X or Millennial shades, and it makes me question their choice of sub-genre.
I liked the inclusion of this story in Monica Murphy’s The Callahans series. I’m thankful we were offered Beck and Addie’s pseudo-tortured, yet adorable story. It also gives us a further peek into the lives of our favorite characters from this series, and it foreshadows the final book, The Callahan Wedding.
In love and romance,