• Rachel Penate

Only When it's Us by Chloe Liese



★★★★


SUMMARY: "Only When It’s Us is a frenemies-to-lovers, college sports romance about a women’s soccer star and her surly lumberjack lookalike classmate, complete with a matchmaking professor, juvenile pranks, and a smoking slow burn. This standalone is the first in a series of new novels about a Swedish-American family of five brothers, two sisters, and their wild adventures as they each find happily ever after." (Adapted from Goodreads)


REVIEW: Sometimes you meet people on Instagram that are nice and relatable... sometimes you even meet people on Instagram that are just supremely genuine and beautiful. AND THEN sometimes in a rare cosmic moment you meet someone that fits all of these categories AND IS AN INCREDIBLE AUTHOR.


Enter: my friend Chloe.


Only When it's Us is the first book of Chloe's I've read and WOW OH WOW! You're so freaking talented friend!


This story was so timely and beautiful and there are a million ways I could exhaust this post with my rambling so I'll get down to it...


REASONS I LOVED ONLY WHEN IT'S US (abv. to OWIU):


1) OWIU handles disability brilliantly. In the novel, Ryder a.k.a. the sexy lumberjack has significant hearing loss and deals with this disability throughout most of the story. Chloe does a beautiful job of illustrating the complexity of dealing with a disability and the emotional toll it takes.


2) The parent-child relationships portrayed throughout OWIU are so endearing. I found myself swooning over Joy and Willa's relationship and in absolute tears during a moving a pivotal moment of the story. GUYS, I don't often cry with books so that's supremely meaningful.


3) The banter between Ryder and Willa is TOP FREAKING NOTCH. I laughed out loud... multiple times.


I would definitely recommend this book if you can handle a slower-paced romance that employs some pretty graphic sexual content. While I definitely fall in the category of "prefers subtly over detail" (see note below), the story was definitely worth the read!


SENSITIVITY WARNINGS: Since I struggle with books that have explicit sexual content, I feel like it's important to note that I found myself having to skip a solid 30 pages of content because of this. In addition, this book addresses the following sensitive topics: cancer, the loss of a parent, and the emotional strain of dealing with a disability.

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