The American Roommate experience – Elena Armas
We all buy books for our own reasons. Because the cover is pretty because we like the author because our bestie recommended it or because it feels right. With this one, I bought it because I did not want to buy another book, let me explain that one. The reason I bought this book is that the Spanish love deception intrigued me but I didn’t want to buy it. I cannot explain why, besides saying that the book didn’t speak to me as much. The story sounded interesting enough but there was something that made me pause and think I wasn’t going to like it as much but it was everywhere. It was following me in every bookstore I stepped foot in. It caught my eye and I would tell myself, ‘not this one’. Then I was in the bookstore (alright fine it was Tesco at 11 at night) and saw this book from the same author. Different book, with a similar premise. I said to myself if I love this one enough, I will give the Spanish love desperation a try. I don’t know why I made these decisions, maybe it was the time of night, it might have been the cover or the fact that I was in this haze of book buying. In the end I bought this book to give the author a go, I think trying new people is really important. Let’s see how we got on.
The book in short
Rosie Graham has a problem. A few, actually. She just quit her well paid job to focus on her secret career as a romance writer. She hasn’t told her family and now has terrible writer’s block. Then, the ceiling of her New York apartment literally crumbles on her. Luckily she has her best friend Lina’s spare key while she’s out of town. But Rosie doesn’t know that Lina has already lent her apartment to her cousin Lucas, who Rosie has been stalking—for lack of a better word—on Instagram for the last few months. Lucas seems intent on coming to her rescue like a Spanish knight in shining armor. Only this one strolls around the place in a towel, has a distracting grin, and an irresistible accent. Oh, and he cooks.
Lucas offers to let Rosie stay with him, at least until she can find some affordable temporary housing. And then he proposes an outrageous experiment to bring back her literary muse and meet her deadline: He’ll take her on a series of experimental dates meant to jump-start her romantic inspiration. Rosie has nothing to lose. Her silly, online crush is totally under control—but Lucas’s time in New York has an expiration date, and six weeks may not be enough, for either her or her deadline.
I got this information here.
There is some erotic material in the story, apart from the shower scene (you’ll know when you stumble upon it) it’s only mentioned not shown. It is easily skipped, thus if you do not like such things this is still a book you might enjoy.
My thought on the book
With spoilers, as always.
Here is the thing with this story, it’s cute but so on the nose which makes me 1. Not as invested and 2. not care enough about the implications of the story. It takes way too long to properly take off, they didn’t fall in love because of the experiment they already liked each other pages before that. This book either put me in a mood that made me go off it or it was just my mood in general. But the story made me keep coming back to the idea that there was no reason for them to not be honest about liking each other yet. This made me resent the reading of the story. Some things that were supposed to be funny such as the 911 plot, weren’t funny at all. If you ring 911 or 999 or 112 and then hang up the emergency services will come to your house (in Europe at least and I hope around the world) and you will be in serious trouble. Calling the EMERGENCY service is no joke nor should it be. It sounds like a prank call. It’s not a prank call. You will get fined doing something like that, I didn’t find it cute or funny, it’s irresponsible. In addition, I do not like people lying to their parents, especially about things such as a job. This is more a general observation but people in books are lying to their parents left, right, and center. Is that a thing? I find it off-putting but that might be because I do not like lying.
Throughout the first parts of the book, I was wondering if they meant that Lucas and his family were Spanish as in from Spain or another Spanish-speaking country (don’t laugh they are in America they could have meant a number of countries as I said I did not read the Spanish loved deception which would have made this clear). Turned out they did mean Spanish from Spain, which was good to know. It made it much easier to picture Lucas. Although my brain made him short as most men from Spain are.. well.. short. (There is nothing wrong with our short kings though). I did enjoy the little sentences and words in Spanish, I would have enjoyed a translation in the footnotes but that might be just me. I love a good translation of pet names.
The book reads as very YA, although it’s not YA, and even if it was there is nothing wrong with YA. The book says that it is a ‘slow burn’ to me it was a boring burn. They like each other right away and it’s a book and book couples usually get together. There was not much in it for me. Truly I think it was the way I looked at this story. With another mood (or read by a different person) I can so see myself (or someone else) liking this, it was lovely and truly cute. But for me, for right now, it wasn’t it. And I hoped quite badly that it would be. The author though truly did great with this book. The writing was nice, the story flowed well. I did find the characters sometimes hard to enjoy. I found Lucas a bit much, it does feel authentic to Spanish men though. I think the falling in love plot is so on the nose in the worst way an example (not a direct quote) ‘Something stirred in me, protectiveness. This is because she is my cousin’s friend’. Nah it’s cause you like her. There is simply no need for them to take forever to just talk and figure it out, it was frustrating in the worst way. I sometimes felt a bit sour toward Rosie. An example: Lucas tells her to take a seat and she is frazzled. He is asking her to eat not to marry her? It’s not that deep but she makes it so deep when it’s not and it’s irritating. As I said I can so easily see this as a cute romance film or something. I can totally see someone truly enjoying this book. I just didn’t. The story about the brother was interesting but not flushed out at all, will that story be told in another book? Time will tell.
The cover is really cute, I like the pink and blue. It’s so pretty and I guess it is what attracted me to it the most. I really do like the dedication in the front, it is very sweet. To conclude, it was fine. If you really love ‘fake boyfriend’ type of stories and if you are a sucker for romance this might be one for you. Maybe in a re-read or maybe in another life, I would love this very much. But today I didn’t, but I am glad to have read it. To answer the question we started with: In a sense, I want to read the Spanish love deception just to give it a go. I might get it if I can get it reduced sometimes, but I won’t be sorry if I never read it.
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