Overall Grade: 4.5 ⭐️
Adriana Locke’s superpower is writing compelling, swoon-worthy heroes who feel like your brother or nephew or uncle. Her brand of hero (or MMC, for those of you who use that acronym) is an everyman type. They are flawed, albeit gorgeous. But even then, I often think they aren’t billionaire or dark romance handsome. They are the handsome kind of guys you’d see walking down the street, approachable and possible for every woman. There is a realness to Locke’s stories, and her newest offering, Flirt, showcases Moss Carmichael in such a way that you can’t help but be envious of her FMC, Brooke. Don’t get wrong. Brooke is the type of heroine one should envy; she’s intelligent, talented with design, hardworking, and beautiful. Almost all of the Carmichael brothers (yes…these are the newest addition to Locke’s repertoire of stories) would love a chance with Brooke, but Moss catches her eye…and heart. Except that Moss and Brooke are working partners and not interested in relationships, so they’re friends, although there is something more to that friendship that they like to deny. What I love most about these two is you can see their relationship coming from a mile away. They cannot simply help themselves. The prompting of “more” for these two is Brooke’s grandmother’s birthday. Unfortunately, unlike the Carmichael Bros, Brooke has a horrible family, save her grandmother. To survive the party, she needs a fake boyfriend. Through the machinations of his family, Moss becomes that fake boyfriend and those feelings that Brooke and Moss have avoided? Yeah, they come to the surface and can’t be denied.
But that’s the fun of Flirt. Moss and Brooke fall fast, and it seems like their HEA is in sight except both Moss and Brooke have emotional baggage they must unload. And like her other romances, Locke illustrates real-world problems through the specter of her main characters. Brooke has to learn to let go of her “ducks,” and Moss has to accept love. Through these characters, we are gifted with people who have learned healthy boundaries yet need a nudge to accept a happy ending. For me, the most emotional moment in the story is Damaris’s (Moss’s mom) unconditional love and affection towards Brooke. Locke stole a little piece of my heart at that moment.
Moss and Brooke’s chemistry, their core friendship, is Flirt’s appeal. Adriana Locke has crafted a new story in a new series that promises you several hours of laughing, crying, and losing yourself in the simple love of two complex characters. I adored every moment of this new book with the potential for several more in this series.
In love and romance,