Love Between Enemies by Molly E. Lee

Posted January 7, 2018 by lenoreo in NetGalley ARCs, Reviews / 0 Comments

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Love Between Enemies by Molly E. LeeTitle: Love Between Enemies
Author: Molly E. Lee
Series: Grad Night #2
Published by: Entangled: Crush
Release Date: January 8th 2018
Format: eARC
Pages: 221
Genres: Contemporary, Young Adult
Source: NetGalley
Reading Challenges: Lenoreo's 2018 Netgalley and Edelweiss Challenge, Lenoreo's 2018 New Release Challenge, Lenoreo's COYER Winter Switch 2017/18
Find it: AmazonB&NGoogleKoboiBooksIndieBoundGoodreads
My rating: three-half-stars


Zoey Handler is ready to put an end to her decade-long rivalry with Gordon Meyers. They’ve traded top spot between valedictorian and salutatorian for years, but all that’s over now. Right? But after a crazy graduation speech prank gets out of hand, suddenly their rivalry turns into all-out war. Time to make peace with a little friendly payback.

Step one? Make him believe they’re now friends.

Step two? Show him the time of his life at an epic graduation party.

Step three? Don’t fall for his tricks.

Step four? Absolutely, positively, do not kiss him again.

So what if he’s cute? (Okay, hot.) So what if he’s charming? (Heaven help her, tempting.) So what if he apologizes? (That has to be fake.) She knows the real Gordon. And no matter how much her heart begs her to stop, there’s no turning back.

Disclaimer: This Entangled Teen Crush book contains one epic party, complete with every high-schoolers-gone-bad shenanigan, and two rivals who discover maybe they could be something much more…if only they’d stop fighting long enough to notice it.

My Review:

I received a free copy through NetGalley in exchange for an honest and unbiased review/opinion.

3.5 stars — This one started off fantastically and ended leaving me super duper happy…  It was just the middle that stretched a bit more than I’d like.  Basically the book suffered from some similar pitfalls, or rather things that bothered me, as the first book in this series; I think I just had slightly less patience than I did for the first one.  But quite a few of the things I loved about the first book were also present in this one.  The funny thing is the concept of having the book take place in a 24 hour period was both a great strength because it made the book very unique, but also a source of trouble, as it makes the conflict in the book drag out a lot of the time.  I’m not sure if I’m making sense.  But it was another case of “will they, won’t they” and “I made a mistake, no I should stick to my guns.”  Which is OK for a bit, but when it goes on too long I lose interest and just want to get to the next thing.  This one was close, but…just a bit too much.

But getting back to the beginning…while you definitely don’t need to read the first book in the series, I did and so I was already curious about what had happened to make Gordon snap, and what Zoey’s revenge plan was.  I was worried that I wouldn’t end up liking either character actually, b/c they both didn’t leave a great impression in the previous book.  And quite frankly, I don’t tend to seek out enemies to lovers stories b/c hate can make me uncomfortable…but Zoey and Gordon weren’t really enemies so much as adversaries…competitors.  So it definitely wasn’t a normal enemies to lovers story, and I appreciated that personally.  So all that to say that right from the prologue and first chapter I was relieved to connect with both Gordon and Zoey.  And I didn’t have to wait very long to have my curiosity satisfied and to understand what would make Gordon and Zoey make such poor choices.  And I did understand them.  Both of them, though I will admit I sympathized more with Gordon’s situation than Zoey’s, but they were both struggling with challenges.

I liked Zoey well enough, but I can’t honestly say I really fell in love with her.  She was bright and fun and determined, but always it was overshadowed by her narrow minded focus on revenge.  She was so tunneled in to her own problems, I feel like she forgot that if she didn’t confide in anyone, then they might not realize what her home life was like.  One thing I did appreciate about her side of the story is that while her parents weren’t the best, they were also not monsters…basically they were flawed as well, and 3 dimensional.  I liked how that resolved in the end, though part of me is not entirely sure if she learned a bigger lesson with all that happened…  Obviously she regretted her revenge plan, but did she understand that perhaps not everyone’s motivations are the same?  Hmmm….

My heart broke for Gordon, and I can honestly say that I *did* fall in love with him.  He was smart, hardworking, kind, loyal to his family, and just kind of adorable in his cluelessness.  I feel like he learned more lessons than Zoey did…though I suppose I wish it would have been more obvious if he learned not to judge other people based on things he sees on the outside.  The only thing that disappointed me a bit with his side of the story was how often he would almost tell Zoey the full story, but then choose not to.  I understood why; he didn’t want that to be the excuse for his behavior, b/c it was wrong no matter what.  But it was frustrating how often he’d cut himself off right before…  Perhaps if it never came up it would have bothered me less.

These books are interesting b/c in terms of steaminess, they are good examples of young adult…innocent and sweet and cute.  I liked how innocent Zoey and Gordon were, and that made their kiss that much more satisfying.  BUT in terms of the details in the partying, the drinking games, I could see some stricter readers classifying it more mature young adult.  For me, I kind of liked that it didn’t pull any punches in that direction, it made it feel more authentic and realistic.  And now I want to play True Americans, or at least figure out what it’s about.  They definitely had a lot of fun moments at the party together, learning what it would be like if they supported instead of competed.

I loved seeing little glimpses of Braylen and Fynn throughout the story, and I’m just that much more excited to see what’s going on with Lennon and Jade.  I wouldn’t have minded more stories from this group of seniors.  But this one was a bit lighter on the secondary cast.  We did get Gordon’s Dad, who was amazeballs, but most of the others played very small roles.

So all in all I still really enjoyed myself, just not *quite* as much as with Bray and Fynn.  But I seriously can’t wait for the next one.

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