Make a date with a hot new romance novella from Select Contemporary!
This boyfriend business is about to get a whole lot more personal...
Event planner Lexi Mannis has a busy life in Chicago - too busy to have a boyfriend. For special occasions, she has her Stand-In Boyfriend, Mac Northrop. Mac offers (almost) all the perks of a real boyfriend - furniture assembly, a date to big events, and someone to cook for. But they've never been "with benefits"...until one wickedly hot night crosses the line.
Mac's been in love with Lexi for ages. He knows he should probably end it, but dammit, he just can't. When things get deliciously down and dirty, Mac is certain that he's made the leap out of the friend zone...until Lexi decides she wants to remain friends. With benefits.
What Lexi doesn't know is that she's running out of time. And if she won't promote Mac to Real Boyfriend, she might just lose her Stand-In Boyfriend to someone else...
|Publisher:||Entangled Publishing, LLC|
|File size:||2 MB|
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Her Stand-In Boyfriend
By Kelly Jamieson, Karen Grove, Jessica Snyder
Entangled Publishing, LLCCopyright © 2015 Kelly Jamieson
All rights reserved.
How much worse could things get?
This never happened at events Lexi organized. Sure, there were problems from time to time. She couldn't control everything, much as she tried with her checklists, notes, and backup plans. Over the years, she'd learned to stay calm when problems arose, because no matter what, she would figure out a solution and make things at least appear perfect to her clients and their guests. She swore they would never know about any snafus or screwups.
Sadly, there was no way to hide the problems tonight and make things appear perfect.
With her insides in knots, Lexi attempted to console a sobbing Mrs. Jacobs while Mr. Jacobs tossed back yet another glass of Laguvulin. "The guests are all eating," she told Mrs. Jacobs, standing in the hall outside the Grande Salon at the swank Cavanaugh Club. "They seem to be enjoying the meal."
Mr. Jacobs snorted. Lexi bugged her eyes out at him, and he grimaced, then patted his wife's shoulder. "Sheesh right," he slurred. "It's just food."
"It's not just food!" Mrs. Jacobs wailed. "This dinner was supposed to be sophisticated and elegant!" She sobbed again.
The Jacobs were a well-known power couple in Chicago, and Steve Jacobs had planned this big bash for his wife Liza's fortieth birthday. Lexi had been thrilled to work with such prominent clients, knowing this could lead to more great jobs for her events planning company, Papillon.
She fought to keep her expression calm, her heart giving a squeeze of sympathy for the other woman. Lexi felt her pain — she, too, had wanted this event to be perfect. Her insides went hollow thinking about how bad this could be for her reputation. "Let's go into the ladies' room and fix your makeup," she said in a gentle voice. "Then you can go back in there and finish your dinner."
"I'm not even hungry anymore." Mrs. Jacobs sniffled, but let Lexi lead her to the bathroom.
Luckily Lexi carried a "tool kit" to every event she planned, which contained scissors, pliers, tape, wire, elastics, push pins, safety pins, and a whole lot more, but also a tube of mascara, concealer, and powder. This wasn't the kind of emergency she'd expected when she'd included those items. A sobbing, distraught client was not something she ever wanted to deal with. Or had ever had to deal with in the past.
"There are a lot of lovely gifts out there," she said, trying to get Mrs. Jacobs's mind off the dinner. "I'm sure you're looking forward to opening them."
Finally they returned to the party. People were eating, although Lexi had caught the surprised looks and exchanged glances as plates had been served. She sighed.
She'd recently started using a new caterer for parties, and they'd seemed awesome ... until they'd disappeared off the face of Chicago. Yesterday, she'd spent the day making frantic phone calls trying to find someone who could cater the party for a hundred guests at such short notice. She'd ended up with Baba Yaworski's Ukrainian Catering. Sadly the cabbage rolls, pierogis, and kielbasa were not what Mr. and Mrs. Jacobs had in mind for their elegant party.
On top of the meal problem, the pretty birthday cake Lexi had ordered from the same caterer was also a no-show. It was going to be beautiful, a huge black and white polka-dotted cake topped with a big pink fondant bow. Thankfully, Lexi's friend Jamie, a pastry chef just starting her own business, had saved the day by whipping up several cakes for her that morning. They were nothing like the amazing creation she'd originally planned, but at least it was cake. Unfortunately, those cakes had also made Liza Jacobs cry since they weren't the beautiful cake she'd expected.
Mrs. Jacobs sat next to her husband, who had refilled his glass of scotch for about the hundredth time that night. As Lexi turned away, a man in a dark suit approached her.
"You're the event planner?" he asked.
"Yes. Lexi Mannis." She extended her hand to shake his.
"I'm the head of security," he said. "We're going to move the gifts to a more secure location."
"I'm sure they're fine here," she said. "But okay." She needed to get the cake with the candle ready to bring out.
After a big production of guests singing along to "Happy Birthday" played over the sound system, a still-miserable Mrs. Jacobs blew out the single sparkler. A swarm of servers descended to cut and serve the cakes. Luckily, they were delicious — red velvet with cream cheese frosting. Her friend Mac's favorite. Maybe she could scrounge a piece to take home, since he was coming over tomorrow.
Lexi's nerves started to settle. As the time neared for Mrs. Jacobs to open her gifts, she went in search of the security guy who'd moved them.
But nobody at the club knew who she was talking about.
"We don't have security staff," the assistant manager told her.
Their eyes met, and Lexi's insides seized again as fear turned her blood to ice water. Staff members helped her look, but the gifts were nowhere to be found.
Pressure built behind her cheekbones, and she fought back tears. This could not be happening.
"There has to be some mistake," she said to the assistant manager. "Please tell me someone didn't just steal all the gifts."
He frowned, looking as ill as she felt. "It kinda looks that way."
"Oh shit." Shit shit shit. How was she going to tell Mrs. Jacobs about this?
She resisted the urge to make a run for it. That would be much easier. But she couldn't do that, or she'd never get another job again.
Although, that might happen anyway after this epic disaster.
They had to call the police, of course, which totally put a damper on the rest of the evening. Guests started leaving, muttering to themselves, while Mrs. Jacobs locked herself in a bathroom stall, crying again.
By the time she was ready to go home, Lexi's head was pounding. She'd dealt with the police and the staff at the club, and attempted to soothe Mrs. Jacobs. There wasn't anything more she could do.
In the cloakroom, she set down her purse, her tool kit, and the small box with the piece of red velvet cake in it for Mac, then tugged her coat from a hanger. She wearily slipped her arms into it, eager to get home and forget about the disastrous evening. Lifting her hair from beneath the collar, she turned to see Mr. Jacobs swaying on his feet and eyeing her with a look that made a shiver crawl down her spine. She forced a smile. "I'm sorry again, Mr. Jacobs."
He moved closer, and she stepped back. And stepped back again. "This party was a disashter," he said. Then he reached for her.
Her heart leaped into her throat, and her eyes flew open wide. She smacked his hands away, stumbling back, but she hit the wall. "What are you doing?"
"I'll still pay your bill," he said. "If you do what I want. Right now."
"What? What do you want?" Adrenaline surged through her veins, making her knees wobble and her hands shake.
"You." He leaned in and tried to kiss her.
Ack! She turned her head and dodged his mouth, smelling the booze on his breath. Her stomach rolled and her heart thudded. Forget about getting paid! Trapped between him and the wall, she gave him another shove, but despite being completely shellacked on Scotch, he didn't move. "No! Get away from me!"
He still tried to kiss her, his hands now on her body.
She did the only thing she could think of. She lifted her knee in a sharp move that connected with his junk.
"Argh!" He stumbled back and bent at the waist, clutching his crotch. "What the fuck?"
Lexi looked up to see Mrs. Jacobs standing in the door of the cloakroom, her red eyes big as plates. "What is going on?" she demanded.
Lexi closed her own eyes briefly.
Yep, her event planning business was toast.
She grabbed her things and walked out of the club onto West Superior Street, tapping down the dark sidewalk in her high heels. She'd been on her feet all night, and her soles burned. As did her stomach. And her eyes.
Wow. Things had been going incredibly well for her business, and now all the work she had put into building her reputation was crumbling.
Lexi entered the parking garage and found her car where she'd parked it earlier, tossing her tool kit into the trunk before climbing into the driver's seat. She set her purse and the piece of birthday cake on the passenger seat. For a moment she gripped the steering wheel, shaking her head. Letting out another sigh, she put the car in reverse and backed out of the parking spot.
Grateful to be back home in the little apartment she shared with her best friend Vanda, she finally kicked off the stiletto pumps. Vanda was out, and the apartment was dark and quiet. Lexi padded in bare feet to the kitchen in search of the bottle of wine they'd opened last night. She frowned, peering into the fridge. Gone. No wine. Son of a bucket.
She heaved a sigh and turned to go to her room. Nibbling her bottom lip, she eyed the box with the red velvet cake where she'd set it on the counter. No. That was for Mac. Her secret stash of gummy bears would have to suffice tonight.
She frowned as she squeezed past the big cardboard boxes taking up space in the hall. Her new IKEA dresser and nightstand had been sitting there for almost a week. Mac was coming tomorrow to help build them. Thank god, because she was totally inept when it came to stuff like that.
As she chewed gummy bears and got ready for bed, she tried not to replay every pathetic detail of the evening in her mind, but it was hard not to. She loved her job, and her business was important to her. How could absolutely everything go wrong at the same time?
After she'd graduated from college with a business degree, she'd worked in the corporate world for a while, but then took a year off to travel. She'd figured she'd come back and find another job easily enough, but that didn't happen. However, she'd also discovered that the corporate world of finance wasn't as much fun as she'd thought it would be, as in, it was no fun at all. She'd decided to try to make a living doing something that was fun ... something she'd always enjoyed, which was planning parties.
With the professional relationships she had cultivated through her previous job, the connections she had via her two dads, and even the networking opportunities her friendship with Mac provided, her business had taken off. The name of the business, Papillon, came from the fact that in college she was known as a social butterfly. It had been almost two years since she'd started Papillon, and things had been going great.
Until tonight. Now her reputation was probably trashed. All the people at the party would talk about it, and who would hire her knowing about that disaster? And what if the Jacobs decided not to pay their bill?
Sleep eluded her as she lay in her bed with her stomach in knots, awake for a good part of the night.
* * *
Mac sat on the floor in Lexi's living room Sunday afternoon with pieces of furniture spread out around him.
"You need to read the directions," Lexi said, sitting cross-legged on the couch.
"No I don't." He totally knew what he was doing. Thank Christ, because Lex was useless. Gorgeous. Smart, absolutely. But not when it came to building furniture.
"How did the party go last night?" He peered at a dark square of laminated fiberboard.
"Oh my god. Don't even ask." She fell back into the couch cushions, closing her eyes.
"What?" He frowned.
"It was a total nightmare. You know how I couldn't get hold of the caterer?"
"Yeah." She'd mentioned it last weekend when they'd bought the IKEA furniture, which was too heavy for her to carry alone. He'd figured she'd reach them eventually.
"Well, I never did find them. They've apparently gone out of business or something, and I had to find someone else last minute."
He set down the Allen wrench and gave her his full attention. Her red-gold hair tumbled in waves around her shoulders, and even dressed in a baggy sweater and leggings, she looked sweet and sexy. He watched a host of emotions scroll across her face as she talked, her green eyes getting shiny, her pretty mouth trembling. When her voice quivered, his chest clenched. Fuck, she's really upset about this.
"And then he grabbed me and tried to kiss me."
Mac's body jolted, and his forehead tightened. "What the fuck?"
"Apparently he would overlook everything and still pay me if I let him nail me in the cloakroom."
"Jesus fucking Christ." Mac leaped to his feet and strode three steps to the couch. He dropped down beside her. "Are you okay?"
"I'm fine." She sighed. "I kneed him in the nuts."
Mac choked. "Oh."
"Right in front of his wife. Happy birthday to her."
"Fuck, Lex ... He touched you?" Rage rose inside him in a scorching blast. "Who is this asshole? I'm gonna — "
"No, you're not." She touched her fingers to his lips. "I'm fine. He was so drunk he probably would've had whisky dick anyway."
"What the hell do you know about whisky dick? Never mind." He closed his mind off to the idea of Lexi and another guy's dick.
"It's done. It was an epic disaster, but it's done." She sighed. "And possibly so is my business."
"Bullshit. Your business will be fine." He reached out and pulled her in for a hug.
Probably a mistake, because his body responded to the feel of her soft curves against him with a familiar stirring down south. But damn, she was upset, and he wanted to make her feel better.
"It'll be fine," he murmured, his cheek against her hair. "It was only one party. None of it was your fault."
"Of course it was. I'm the event planner. It's up to me to make sure everything goes perfectly."
"You didn't know someone was going to steal the gifts ... And the caterer would go out of business ... And your client was a drunken lech ... But, heck, you said the cake was good."
She huffed out a laugh. "Thank you, Mac. I can always count on you to put things in perspective."
He grinned and gave her a squeeze. "Your business is a success because you're good at what you do. You know it. I know it. And so do all of your clients."
"I've told you before, you need to sell yourself better. Don't be modest. You are good at it. You love planning and making lists. With your business background and the cool ideas you come up with, plus the fact that you're so anal — er, I mean, detail oriented — of course your business is a success. And it will continue to be."
"I shouldn't have let that guy take the gifts."
"You had no idea he was a thief." He squeezed her again. "Come on. Don't beat yourself up over things you couldn't control."
She pulled back and gave him a watery smile. "Thank you." The warm softness in her eyes had his gut twisting. "Okay. You made me feel better. Now. Back to my furniture."
Jesus. The idea of some fuckwit groping her made his stomach churn and his fists clench. How was he supposed to forget that and build a fucking dresser? He sucked in a long breath through his nose and then exhaled. "Right." He moved off the couch, his blood still running hot. She was okay. Well, she'd hurt the guy, so there was that.
He lowered himself back to the floor to resume the construction project.
Moments later, Lexi said, "That's such a tiny little tool."
"That's not what my last girlfriend said." He looked up and met her eyes, and damn, he loved the smile and the choked laugh she gave. He grinned back at her.
They were friends.
When he'd met Lexi in college six years ago, he'd been dating someone else, but it hadn't been long before he was so crazy for Lexi that he'd broken up with Brittany. Because he'd been off limits when they met, Lexi saw him as a friend and that was it. She'd dated other guys — hell, guys had been lined up at her door. Her red hair and freckles should have given her a Raggedy Ann look, should have been more of a turn-off than a turn-on. But her energy, smart mouth, and frequent laughter drew people in. As he'd gotten to know her better, she'd become more and more attractive ... her pretty face, bright eyes and sweet smile, and an ass that could make him hard with just a glimpse of it in a pair of snug jeans.
He looked down at the Allen wrench in his hand and tried to refocus. He searched the floor for what he needed.
"What are you looking for?" Lexi asked.
Excerpted from Her Stand-In Boyfriend by Kelly Jamieson, Karen Grove, Jessica Snyder. Copyright © 2015 Kelly Jamieson. Excerpted by permission of Entangled Publishing, LLC.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Its a sweet easy read about friends becoming lovers. For being a quick read, the characters were well developed.
Emotional friends to lovers story......and yes he is hot.
This was such a fun, short read! I really like friends-to lovers type of genre. You can never go wrong with any of Kelly's books. Can wait for the next one!
I liked Lexi and Mac although I am not a big fan of subtle or blatant politically correct "stuff" in the books I read. For a short book this kinda dragged in places... I thought and Lexi was definitely "slow" in waking up to Mac's interest... Very predictable and what could have been developed into a better book was lacking for me.
I received an ARC of this book from the author for an honest review. A friends to lovers sweet story. I liked that the tables were turned in this book. Mac pining away for his friend since college. Mac the geek turned God. Mac insecure about his feelings. It was a refreshing change from the norm. It was a cute, quick read but to me a little different than all the other KJ books I've read. Mac although swoon worthy, lacked that little bad boy edge I've come too love in Kelly's other books. We did get some of that Jamieson sizzle in the sheets, and on the couch, and on the floor! I would definitely recommend this if you're looking for a quick beach read!
Upon finishing, my initial reaction: Can I give the book more than five stars? Or more than ten? Because reasons. Reasons like how I already want to reread the book and I just finished it. My Thoughts (full review): So, I was out somewhere waiting my turn and decided to start a new book. My intention was to read a different book than this (because the other book was releasing sooner), but when I accidentally tapped this one I decided to just go with it. And oh... my... god... let me tell you something--the universe knew how much I needed to read this one next. Lexi and Mac have been the best of friends for years. Their relationship is pretty awesome--they're always there for each other, even as "dates" when needed for events and parties. After another one of their "date" nights, they go back to her place with food and sit around talking. It leads to a very intense sexually charged moment that fills the air between them. Let me just say... FIRST KISS, FIRST KISS, FIRST KISSSSSSSSS!!! And I was dying. I just don't know how to express how amazing it was. In fact, I've read it about fifteen times since finishing the book, that's how much I love it. Their one night together leads to another, but neither time do they discuss how the dynamic of their relationship changed. One thing's for sure--they need to figure it out, and fast, before a simple misunderstanding could wreck their friendship for good. Her Stand-In Boyfriend is one of the most captivating sexy and sweet stories ever. I love love loved how Lexi and Mac were friends first and how that was the bedrock for the possibility for something more. It's so adorable how Mac feels about Lexi. Book boyfriend alert! Major swooning over here, I'm jealous of Lexi something serious. I am anxiously awaiting more books by Kelly Jamieson! My Rating: Exceptional
I have yet to read a Mac that I did not absolutely adore. And this Mac did not disappoint. He was sexy, funny, thoughtful, always there, and smoking in bed. I liked him from the beginning to the end. He never disappointed. Then there was Lexi. While I did like her, she was fun, entertaining, sweet, caring, there were a couple of times I was frustrated with her. She had this awesome guy but was oblivious to her feelings for him. But when she realized them and acted on it, it was very heartening. This was a quick, hot, spicy but very sweet book of friends to lovers. I received this book in exchange for an honest review from the publisher.
I have heard lots of good things about Ms. Jamieson's writing and decided to sample it for myself with HER STAND-IN BOYFRIEND and I have to agree with what I have heard. HER STAND-IN BOYFRIEND packs quite a punch for such a quick read. Mac Northrop has been in love with his friend for a long time but he is content staying in the friend zone and filling in when she needs his manly skills, as long as he can remain in her life. Lexi Mannis has got a good thing going on. With her event planning company taking up all her time, she has none to devote to a boyfriend. Her best buddy, Mac is there to help with most boyfriend stuff like being her date to events and helping with furniture assembly and in return, she acts as his hostess when needed and cooks for him. The only thing missing is the benefits of a relationship, until the night everything changes. For Mac, that night means that he can now explore his feelings for Lexi but that's too bad because Lexi is not on the same page with him. She's too scared to change things and would rather they remain friends, only with benefits this time. I love friends-to-lovers stories because half the work is done already and the relationship can be built on the foundation of friendship, but Mac and Lexi had me seriously questioning their friendship because of how difficult it was for them to communicate with each other! I can understand the fear of rejection, but they just avoided talking about what had changed in their relationship, like it would fix itself. Lexi seemed quite self-absorbed but her past shed light on her behavior and I began to sympathize with her when she realized that her geeky college buddy was quite the hunk and a successful one too and she had to stake her claim before he was taken by another woman. HER STAND-IN BOYFRIEND is steamy and passionate and I really enjoyed it. Disclaimer: I received this book for free from the Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
4 Star Review This was a fun quick read. Mac has been friends with Lexi for years and though Mac has always had a thing for Lexi he has never admitted it and has been fine with being friends. Lexi has always been able to count on Mac. He is there for her when she needs him like she has been there for him. Things come to a head after one steamy night after a little too much alcohol and now they have to deal with the fall out. Lexi being busy doesn't have time for a boyfriend but she doesn't want to deny herself all that Mac has become. Mac, was hoping this was the turning point and Lexi would finally as see him as something more than just a friend, but he is shattered when he learns that she still wants to be friends but now with the benefits. The problem for this couple was lack of communication. They were already in some ways acting like a couple they just didn't put a name to it. Many have criticized Lexi saying she was using Mac but honestly they treated each other the same. Mac was just at fault for never putting his true feelings out there. One could argue that he didn't want to risk the friendship either. Either way, things work out and the couple gets their happily ever after. I found this to be an enjoyable read as long as you don't look to far into it. Thanks to NetGalley for an ARC in exchange for an honest review.
This boyfriend business is about to get a whole lot more personal… Event planner Lexi Mannis has a busy life in Chicago—too busy to have a boyfriend. For special occasions, she has her Stand-In Boyfriend, Mac Northrop. Mac offers (almost) all the perks of a real boyfriend—furniture assembly, a date to big events, and someone to cook for. But they've never been “with benefits”…until one wickedly hot night crosses the line. Mac's been in love with Lexi for ages. He knows he should probably end it, but dammit, he just can't. When things get deliciously down and dirty, Mac is certain that he's made the leap out of the friend zone…until Lexi decides she wants to remain friends. With benefits. What Lexi doesn't know is that she's running out of time. And if she won't promote Mac to Real Boyfriend, she might just lose her Stand-In Boyfriend to someone else… Review: Ms. Jamieson always writes, great sexy stories and this is no exception. Great tale of friends-to-lovers. Mac has been in love with Lexi for a long time, but has not wanted to push the boundaries of their friendship. After a night out, all the sexual tension comes to a head when Mac and Lexi give into the chemistry that is obviously between them. Lexi runs scared though and wants to hid from what could be between the two of them. Mac tries to go along with their "friends with benefits" arrangement, but he loves her and wants more. Mac takes drastic measures and once Lexi sees Mac with another woman, it is her "come to Jesus" moment and she must decide if she wants to take a chance or let Mac go. This book has so many great elements, it is fun, sad, romantic and sexy. I really enjoyed Lexi and Mac and their story. Mac is my favorite in the book, he tries so hard and hides his true feelings. Lexi kind of uses him through most of the story, making me want to smack her up-side her head. I get that she is scared and says some stupid things to Mac, thank goodness for her Mac is such a great guy. I have to say Kelly has a way with the sexy scenes, they were Hot. Totally recommend this or any of Kelly's books. 4Stars *Received a copy of this from the publisher in exchange for a fair and honest review*
stand in boyfriend slow n steady ***A gifted copy was provided by the publisher for my honest review******. This is the classic storyline of best friends and one is in love with the other while the other one doesn’t know. This is Lexi and Mac ‘s story of hidden love. Let me paint you the story and blow your mind--Event planner Lexi is way too busy to have much, if any social life so she has her best bud Mac be her social boyfriend for any black tie affairs or when she needs to have a +1 to any events. He’s become her stand in boyfriend and that is how it just ended up over time but this one night, they end up having this wild and crazy sexual encounter and it blew the windows off the “best friend” status and after a completely weird and awkward morning after, Lexi decides to treat everything as it never happened and go back to friends only. Mac is thinking things are different now because he believes that since they had mind blowing, socks blown off sexual encounter that Lexi will see they are meant for each other but he soon realizes that she has put him back under the friends only and it must not have meant much to her . He wants it all or nothing so he walks away. Lexi is left stumbling and trying to figure out what went wrong between them. Here is the rub. Usually its men that are the oblivious party but in this story, you have the woman who didn’t realize that she had a man who was in love with her and had been for so long. It took a bestie with hard words and a sly play on jealously to get a girl off her rear to get her moving back to the man of her dreams. I do have to say, I would have liked this story better if it didn’t move so slow at times. Also, I felt like Mac didn’t seem connected to Lexi. It felt like his emotions were forced which made Lexi not believe like he really loved her which made Lexi not come across as sincere as wanting to be with Mac. The ending and Lexi’s best friend were two good things about this story. I hope the best friend gets her own story, for she is a feisty woman and I can see her needing a story Overall, this is a good story but it could have been better. My rating: 3.5 stars ***
Friends. The person Lexi Mannis considered that one friend that she could call for just about everything, and he was ALWAYS there was Mac Northrop. He hung out whenever she needed him, attended any event she didn't wanted to go to alone, put together all that terrible furniture she bought with little-bitty pieces, and he ate all the meals that she didn't want to eat alone. Mac didn't mind the friends category with Lexi, but deep down he would love to be more. He had feelings for her since he met her but kept them hidden. Unfortunately, one night they had too much to drink and things got a bit out of hand. He thought this would change things, but Lexi didn't want things to change... Friends with benefits. That label that may work for some but bothered Mac. He couldn't see having Lexi in his life that way. And he couldn't see Lexi keeping him around to just use him at her leisure. While he didn't mind all the other things that Lexi called him for, he was looking for something a bit more permanent if he crossed the friendship line with Lexi. Everyone that played a part in Lexi & Mac's story saw the bond that was going on between them except for Lexi... Once Lexi had questions about what she should do, she talked to those closest to her, and they all had different advice, but she didn't seem to trust in them or herself. It took her talking to her Papa to finally have it sink in. And that advice was what truly made the story. I loved how the story of Lexi's background also brought in her personal strength, and why her bond with Mac was so strong. Mac was truly the geek turned hottie! But he didn't grow a super-ego or change for the worse. He also kept his heart in the same place and it remained vulnerable to the same woman! I am glad the two had the liquid courage to break them out of their shells because they were definitely made to burn up the sheets! Definitely one of my new favorites from Ms. Jamieson. I received an advanced copy for my honest opinion.
I'm a huge fan of the friends to lovers theme. This one did not disappoint. Mac being the stand in boyfriend in love with Lexi and she not realizing and in denial was entertaining. The sparks fly when the friend zone is crossed and the friendship is challenged. I loved these two. This was a fun, quick read. a copy was provided to me in exchange for an honest review.
Origianlly posted on my blog: Tangled Up In Books I received a copy of this book, from the publisher, in exchange for an honest review. In no way did this sway either my review or my rating! I just love the bittersweetness of a really good unrequited love story. Especially when there's a solid friendship involved. One of them secretly pining away for the other. Sigh. It makes my twisted heart soar. I love it even more so when it's the guy who's the one with all of the one sided feelings and the girl hasn't got the slightest clue, because I usually end up falling for that guy hard and fast. Her Stand-In Boyfriend ended up being everything I hoped it would be. You know I was shocked when I was formatting this post and realized the book was only 130 pages. It felt like a full length novel. Well paced, very fleshed out and established storyline and characters. Normally I would say it's simply because of the history of the characters that there was no feel of rush or urgency from start to finish. But I feel like I knew the characters inside and out and there was plenty of the will they/won't they happening. So all I can say is well done, Kelly Jamieson. You squeezed so much into this short book and it flowed perfectly. Sigh. These characters. My heart does a little tug just thinking about them. The chemistry between Mac and Lexi is just...I mean its...there are just no words. As I expected I fell so freaking hard for Mac. Every time his heart would crack a little over his feelings for Lexi mine would crack for him as well. But you can't help but adore Lexi either because it's not like she's purposely hurting him. She just has no clue. She is so sweet and kind hearted. When they do finally hookup....Oh. My. Word. Did someone turn the heat on in here? It's explosive and passionate and just so much deliciousness! Although it would also happen to be my one teeny, tiny complaint about the book. Their idea of dirty talk...just didn't cut it for me. I kinda had to skim things here and there because it just didn't fit. Still though, unbelievable heat. Even the whole billionaire aspect (which normally grates on me) worked well. Mac is like the quiet, nerdy and doesn't flaunt his money type of guy. Which is so much better than the I-have-more-money-than-God-and-I-can-buy-you attitude that tends to happen quite often. Overall I am just so pleased with every part of this book. It's unbelievably quick but makes you feel like you've read 400 pages (in a good way). It's bittersweet, funny and unbelievably swoon worthy. I'm going to have to get my hands on some more Kelly Jamieson books real soon because I am hooked! Thanks to Entangled Publishing for the opportunity to read and review this book!!
Ink Angels Book Blog received a copy in exchange for an honest review. What can I say about this book except Lexi and Mac are great together. Mac is such a hottie with all his dirty talk and I loved that he always knew just how he felt about Lexi. I even loved the funny parts, and was surprised to find myself actually laughing out loud while reading them. My only regret was that this steamy book was not longer. I would have enjoyed learning more about Lexi and Mac's back stories. Albeit a quick read, I would definitely recommend this hot mix of love and laughter to romance enthusiasts everywhere.
Mac Northrop has been friends with Lexi Mannis ever since they were at college together. He was something of a geek back then but he’s always been there whenever she needed him – for special occasions, building furniture, to try cooking for, just there when she needed him – a truly great friend to have around. He’s now a very successful business man and she’s also helped him out as a partner for corporate events and the like. The problem is he’s been in love with her for years and she just doesn’t know it. When they cross the line from friendship to lovers he thinks things are going well – until she suggests they be ‘friends with benefits’. He wants more but she’s too blinkered to realise and is now in danger of losing him completely…. This is a short, very sweet, chicklit relating how the two journey from friends to acknowledging their love for each other after experiencing jealousy and plenty of angst along the way. A great book for a quick escape read! Thanks to the author, publisher and NetGalley too, for letting me read an ARC in exchange for an honest review.
I received an ARC from the author for an honest review. And honestly: I LOVED IT! This is a short-but-sweet tale of best friends who try to see if they can have the best of both worlds. Lexi is a down to Earth girl who finds herself a little down on her luck. When Lexi finds herself in a bind, she turns to, who else? Her stand in boyfriend, Mac. Mac who went from college geek to computer hunk. Only Mac is feeling way more than friendly. Will they or won't they? If they "do," Can their friendship survive? This book keeps you wondering how two people can be friends when every touch makes YOU sizzle! Sometimes you just really want the main characters to be real. That's the case here. Kelly's characters are known to be written so well that you could truly imagine them walking the streets of Chicago or Winnipeg. I couldn't put this book down! I read it until the wee hours of the morning--start to finish. I wanted to know everything about Mac and Lexi. The writing is, once again, authentic. Kelly Jamieson gives us another round of true-blue-and-hot-blooded man meets normal-down-to-earth chick. And of course, some seriously hot hot HAWT scenes! I have loved every book by Kelly Jamieson I have read so far. Another case of exemplary writing making for a fun night of reading.
I love these type of stories, they always make me teary eyed and this one was no exception. At times I wanted to slap Lexi and hug Mac, but by the end the struggle they went trough made me want to just hug them both. I absolutely loved Lexi and Mac's story and hope you take the time to read it, because I believe you will in joy it too.
This light, fun, sexy read will give you an afternoon of complete entertainment. A straight forward friends to lovers romance with great characters, great writing, and a quick pace. Lexi and Mac have been friends forever but friends without benefits is gone after one wicked night. Mac has been in love with Lexi for years and hopes that night will have them moving forward as more. When Lexi declares she wants to keep everything on a friends with benefits basis, he feels all is lost. Will Lexi be able to handle it if Mac moves on??? This is one I definitely recommend!
And they say men and women can't remain just friends. I liked Lexi and Mac together. They accepted each other and were always there for one another. Kelly Jamieson did an amazing job with getting the reader emotionally involved in the story. It was not hard to develop attachments to both characters. I do have a criticism though. Midway through the story I found it to slow down and drift off pace. That is the reason why I rated it four stars instead of five. I received an ARC of Her Stand-In Boyfriend in exchange for an honest review.
Her Stand-In Boyfriend is a great read for when don’t have much time. It’s short, sweet and simple; a very straight forward romance. I really enjoyed it and was sad it had to end! The best part, I believe, about this book is that the synopsis for it, nails it. Mac and Lexi have been friends since college, he’s been in love with her and she’s more-or-less clueless. The writing in this book was well done, as was the prose. Mac was the college super smart geek who ended up owning his own business and pulling a Cinderella. What would you call that for a guy? I’m not sure, but regardless, he pulls one. Six years after college and meeting Lexi he has things going for him. He’s intelligent, he dresses better and according to Lexi he definitely isn’t the geeky guy he was back then. Lexi also owns her own company, an event company that constantly has her busy. She has no room for a guy in her life! She wants to have time for herself, her friends, her work and besides, men are constantly saying she doesn’t pay enough attention to her. So what better than to have Mac as her stand-in? She’s not using him, or at least, not intentionally, right? Lexi and Mac have a pretty great friendship. They call, talk and hang out with each other, they use each other as “Stand-in’s” when they don’t have dates for events and everything on the surface seems perfect. Mac is Lexi’s best bud, he’s always there and willing to drop everything if she needs help. When Mac needs something, she’s always makes time for him too. Until one night things explode between them and it makes Lexi look at everything differently. After a completely awkward morning after, Lexie decides to act like nothing really happened between them. They are still friends, right? Well, if you can really be friends with a guy you constantly want to pull the clothes off of. Mac on the other hand, is thinking this is going somewhere else, until Lexi drops the bombshell on him that she wants to be friends, with benefits. That’s not what Mac wants though, he wants all of Lexi, not just the benefits. It takes some hashing out, some jealousy and some angst but these two finally get their act together. The ending to this one seemed a bit rushed but it’s not something that’s detrimental to the book. The co-stars in this one are pretty fun too, or well, if you consider a blunt best friend who knocks sense into people, fun. I know I do! I’m also hoping that best friend gets her own book. ;)
Lexi Mannis is on her way up: she owns a catering business, and her very important dinner for a prominent Chicago couple turns into an epic disaster: the food suppliers vanished and someone claiming to be security fled with expensive gifts that were for the birthday girl. Her friend Mac, whom Lexi met in college is the stand-in boyfriend of the title. Mac has been in love with Lexi for a good while, but he doesn’t want to risk their friendship and makes do with accompanying Lexi on dates, but without the usual physical stuff that goes with it, that is sex. Mac – Macauley Northrop – is a millionaire tech entrepreneur, and he’s a very nice guy. Once again Lexi asks Mac to do her a favour and escort her to an art gallery opening, not Mac’s favourite thing, but all of Lexi’s girlfriends are busy and he obliges because he cares so much for Lexi, if only she loved him too... Ms. Jamieson doesn’t waste a minute and we jump right into the action. HER STAND-IN BOYFRIEND is a friends to lovers story, and one of the best I have ever read. I really felt that Lexi and Mac were friends, that they cared for each other; it never felt like a ploy to bring two characters together. Lexi and Mac are both very engaging; they are lovely, normal people. I loved the banter between Mac and Lexi, as well as between Lexi and her friend and roommate Vanda; it felt genuine. I also loved Lexi’s parents a lot, and the part they played in Lexi’s reluctance to commit to a relationship. This book is very well written, it flows very well; it’s modern and young, and quite original in spite of the overused trope. Ms. Jamieson avoids the usual clichés, she explores both characters’ feelings, and there are sweet and yet sizzling sex scenes. HER STAND-IN BOYFRIEND is wonderfully simple and simply wonderful! I was given a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.