It can’t be him. Ever.
Published: April 17, 2018
Publisher: Penelope Douglas LLC
Pages: 404 (Kindle)
Series: N/A – Standalone
But the girl of my dreams is off-limits. She’s Cole’s and she’s nineteen. There’s no way.
He took me in when I had nowhere else to go.
He doesn’t use me, hurt me, or forget about me. He doesn’t treat me like I’m nothing, take me for granted, or make me feel unsafe.
He remembers me, laughs with me, and looks at me. He listens to me, protects me, and sees me. I can feel his eyes on me over the breakfast table, and my heart pumps so hard when I hear him pull in the driveway after work.
I have to stop this. It can’t happen.
My sister once told me there are no good men, and if you find one, he’s probably unavailable.
Only Pike Lawson isn’t the unavailable one.
I took her in, because I thought I was helping.
She’d cook a few meals and clean up a little. It was an easy arrangement.
As the days go by, though, it’s becoming anything but easy. I have to stop my mind from drifting to her and stop holding my breath every time I bump into her in the house. I can’t touch her, and I shouldn’t want to.
The more I find my path crossing hers, though, the more she’s becoming a part of me.
But we’re not free to give into this. She’s nineteen, and I’m thirty-eight.
And her boyfriend’s father.
Unfortunately, they both just moved into my house.
Hi friends! I’m back with another review for another Penelope Douglas novel. This is quite different from her other books I’ve read for several reasons we’ll discuss later, but I did want to mention that while this is certainly a great book, it isn’t my favorite from this author. And Penelope Douglas is like my go-to in NA romance. So that’s saying something.
Birthday Girl follows Jordan, a 19-year-old who moves in with her boyfriend and his dad. Instantly there’s some attraction between Jordan and Pike, her boyfriend’s father, especially considering they had met previously before knowing who the other was. What ensues is a boat load of sexual tension, plenty of drama, and one happily ever after.
I really enjoyed this novel, despite it not being my favorite of Pen’s books. It was very much a slow-burn romance. Like SLOOOOOOW burn. It felt like I waited 30 years for them to get together. But when they did, oh boy. This was just as sexy as her other novels, which was exactly what I was looking for at the time, so no complaints in that department. I think my main issue was that there wasn’t enough drama for me. While this was supposed to be a taboo romance, it didn’t necessarily feel that way most of the time. Also, when their romance does come out it’s not as explosive as I would have liked it to be. Like I wanted more fist fights and screaming matches, ya know? Sounds weird, but what I wanted while I was reading was a little more of that over-the-top drama that her books usually give me.
While both main characters in this, Jordan and Pike, are over ten years apart, they’re still so similar. They worked really well together and you could tell their feelings were genuine, which I loved about it. I connected more with Jordan, for obvious reasons, but I really loved reading both POVs in this. Dual POVs in romance are like my absolute favorite, I really enjoy seeing a storyline play out through both characters. I thought Jordan’s sister, Cam, was a little obnoxious and I could have done without her altogether, honestly, but I appreciate a sisterly bond. Cole was equal parts endearing and jackass, and while there were times I wanted to strangle him, I thought he was a character that added some much appreciated tension. His mom, too. Gosh, I loved to hate that woman.
All in all this was a really good NA romance, it just didn’t have those darker elements her books usually have. The writing style, from the music references to the naughty bits, were pure Penelope, and I enjoyed it from start to finish. This one will be great for those who want to try her books but are unsure of the darker themes in her more popular Fall Away and Devil’s Night series. Also, I would recommend this for ANYONE who enjoyed a good, drawn-out slow burn romance!