Release Date: August 17th, 2021
Hi, my name is Bree Camden, and I’m hopelessly in love with my best friend and star quarterback Nathan Donelson (so is half of America, judging by the tabloids and how much the guy dates). The first step is admitting, right? Except, I can never admit it to him because he clearly doesn’t see me that way, and the last thing I want is for things to get weird between us.
Nothing but good old-fashioned, no-touching-the-sexiest-man-alive, platonic friendship for us! Everything is exactly how I like it! Yes. Good. (I’m not crying, I’m just peeling an onion.)
Our friendship is going swimmingly until I accidentally spill my beans to a reporter over too much tequila, and now the world seems to think me and Nathan belong together. Oh, and did I mention we have to date publicly for three weeks until after the Super Bowl because we signed a contract with…oops, forgot I can’t tell anyone about that!
Bottom line is, now my best friend is smudging all the lines and acting very un-platonic, and I’m just trying to keep my body from bursting into flames every time he touches me.
How am I going to make it through three weeks of fake dating Nathan without anything changing between us? Especially when it almost-sort-a-kinda seems like he’s fighting for a completely different outcome?
Buckle up for a slow burn, sports romance with combustible chemistry from the first chapter, laugh-out-loud humor, and easy to love characters. The Cheat Sheet has all the sizzle, but no on-page explicit content (PG-13 equivalent for mild language, implied sexual situations, and alcohol use).
CW/TW: anxiety and panic attacks
Sarah Adams, you are so wonderfully talented with your stories and I want to be you when I grow up.
The Cheat Sheet is Sarah’s newest addition to her series of fantastic romantic comedies. One of my favorite things about Sarah’s stories is how relatable her heroines are. They’re beautiful, charming and hilarious, but we can all see a little bit of ourselves in them.
And Bree Camden is no exception. She’s the girl next door, the best kind of friend, the funny, loud and entertaining person in the group, but she’s also the most loved of them all. Bree is all kinds of amazing and I swear, from the minute the book opens, you are drawn into her and you never look away. Her shenanigans are on point, her personality is so charming and her undying love for her favourite humans just makes her that much more attractive. Let’s not forget Nathan Donelson, because he is the swooniest hero Sarah has ever written, but also the most loveable one in my opinion. Nathan is a professional athlete and yet, he’s got none of that alpha-hole personality, he’s a goddamn cinnamon roll and you can’t even deny it. As the quarterback for the LA Sharks, Nathan is loved by the entire country, but he’s also loved by his best friend, Bree. Who he loves in return. It’s just that neither of them know this. MUTUAL PINING, FTW.
“Bree is everything I aspire to be, everything I love, everything I desire. She holds my heart, and, with all that I am, I hope she never gives it back.”
I absolutely, madly, deeply loved Bree and Nathan’s friendship. I also love the best friends to lovers trope, because there’s so much going on for these characters already and when they get together, everything just magically falls into place! Okay, not entirely magical, but the journey to that place is so fantastic. Both of them have intense feelings for each other, so obviously they’re playing it cool and just living their best lives as best friends, because that’s what they should do, right? And their shenanigans as friends is just the most entertaining ever. There are TONS of laugh out loud moments, so brace yourself for all the giggling and chuckling and spitting of food and drinks in certain situations.
But, things aren’t going to be easy for Bree and Nathan, especially when she gets drunk and blurts out the truth about her feelings for Nathan to a random woman who happens to be a reporter. And then everything just spins out of control. For a bit anyway. It was so entertaining watching Bree and Nathan go from best friends to being in a fake relationship, because the feelings are still there and now that Nathan knows how Bree feels, he needs to win her over properly.
Sarah writes a good slow burn. Yes, it’s closed-door, but this book is just 100% sexual tension because these characters are constantly horny for each other. And I love that so much. Everybody around them notices it, except them. Isn’t that just the best thing ever? So, Nathan enlists (or rather they force him to do so) the help of his friends/teammates to come up with the Romance Cheat Sheet to help Nathan win over Bree the right way and guys, it’s amazing. I love bromances and Sarah does such a wonderful job introducing us to all these guys and their personalities and how all of them fit together. It’s just the best thing ever!
The Cheat Sheet also tackles anxiety and panic attacks and Sarah does a wonderful job weaving that into the story. I love that it’s so real and honest, but also I really liked the way it was depicted and how the character worked through their struggles and the fear of what all of that meant. It’s not a big part of the story, but it exists and Sarah even mentions that in her author’s note at the beginning.
Do yourself a favour and just read all of Sarah’s books, but definitely read this one first. Drown in her magic and all your feels as you fall head over heels for Bree and Nathan and everything that their relationship comprises.
Thanks to NetGalley and Sarah Adams for an advance copy. I am voluntarily leaving an honest review.