NetGalley Review: “Midnight Duet” by Jen Comfort

Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Steam: 🔥🔥🔥

Release Date: January 10th, 2023

Add to Goodreads | Amazon.in (Available on KU)

CW: scarring and disfigurement of a main character, slut shaming and infidelity (not the MCs)

Self-professed diva Erika Greene has it all: a starring role on Broadway, legions of fans, spectacular natural talent. But after an accident on stage leaves her face scarred and her career in shambles, Erika retreats to Paris, Nevada, where she’s inherited a ramshackle opera house in desperate need of some TLC.

Erika pours her savings into the building, but it’s not enough to stave off casino developer Raoul Decomte’s avaricious gaze. With foreclosure imminent, she leases the space to some unexpected tenants: a German hair metal band, fronted by glam rock god Christof Daae.

Erika is tempted by Christof’s low-slung leather pants—and even more so by his ambitious drive to make Nacht Musik international superstars—but he’s off-limits. The rest of his band thinks he’s still dating their beloved keyboardist, who is conveniently not present on this jaunt to the American Southwest. When Erika finds out Christof’s been unceremoniously dumped and is trying to keep it under wraps, she makes a deal to keep his secret…for a price, of course.

Christof is desperate to hold the rest of the band together after his keyboardist’s departure, but he can’t maintain the charade forever. Nor can he resist the opera house’s mysterious proprietor, who tempts him with midnight singing lessons. It isn’t long before sensuous nighttime interludes turn into smoldering backstage encounters.

But can their newly ignited passion survive the searing light of day? Or will their beautiful duet turn into a brokenhearted power ballad for one?

 

I didn’t know I needed a gender-flipped The Phantom of the Opera retelling in my life till I was four pages into Jen Comfort’s novel. I’m pretty sure I dreamed about this book when I wasn’t reading it, it completely captivated me from the start. Erika’s prickly nature, her passion and drive to protect the only thing she has left. Christof’s determination to be the best of the best and the way he loves his music and his band. The setting of Paris, Nevada and the Paris Opera House. The members of Nachtmusik and how distinct each of them were. Also how entertaining and interesting too!

Jen’s writing is snappy and smart, drawing you in and making you obsess over these characters and their fates. It’s just one of those stories that will make you want to give up everything to just read. Erika and Christof are horny, happy and wonderful fools. I absolutely loved the push and pull between these characters, the lust that thrums between them that they don’t act on for a while. You can feel the sexual tension through Jen’s words and that’s the best kind of writing, in my opinion.

Erika is such a fantastic character with such a big personality and an even bigger heart that she doesn’t let a lot of people see. I loved that she was shamelessly a diva, that her life had allowed her to be a certain type of person and she sank into that role in the best way possible. But I also liked how we got to see different sides of this character, her growth and evolution really made her an even more incredible character than I thought possible. Christof was such a dream. From all descriptions of him—clothes, hair, etc—I never thought that he’d be my type, but he was all of that and more. His struggles with making music, the drama (and hilarity) with the band and just all of that chemistry with Erika draws you into him completely.

Whether you’re a fan of the musical or not, I think this story still hits the spot. It’s got all of the things that I love about romance and then some. Cannot wait to read Jen’s debut now, because if this is what her writing is like, I’m going to devour that one too.

Thanks to Jen Comfort & NetGalley for generously providing me with an advance copy. I am voluntarily leaving an honest review.

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