Genre: New Adult

?Dirty Little Secret by Rachael Brownell

Posted on September 12, 2021 by Nadene @ Totally Addicted to Reading in Reviews / 11 Comments

?Dirty Little Secret by Rachael Brownell delivered a sweet friends to lovers romance. The story hooked me from the first page and I soon found myself engrossed in this romantic story where the hero fell in love with his best friend’s sister.

?Dirty Little Secret by Rachael BrownellTitle: Dirty Little Secret
Author(s): Rachael Brownell
Series: Lake State University #1
Published by Rachael Brownell Books on September 9, 2021
Pages: 206
Genre(s): Contemporary Romance, New Adult
Source: Wildfire Marketing Solutions
Format: eArc
Goodreads
Purchase: Amazon
Rating: One StarOne StarOne StarHalf a Star
Series Rating: One StarOne StarOne StarOne Star
Heat Level: One FlameOne FlameOne FlameOne Flame

He’s my brother’s best friend.Which makes me off limits.My brother made that clear to all his friends the summer I turned fourteen.That didn’t stop me from falling in love with him. From dreaming about sharing my future with him. From wondering what it would be like to be with him.It didn’t stop the heated looks he’d send me when no one was paying attention. Or how he always found a way to be near me, to touch me. To protect me.For six years we fought against the waves of desire but the current kept pushing us toward one another. Then I had him.We collided with hurricane force. Our connection… explosive. It felt right, being with him. With the first kiss, I gave him my heart. With the first touch, I gave him my body. When I saw the love in his eyes, I handed over my soul.I should have known it was too good to last, though. The next morning, he was gone, and my heart shattered. I left it on his bedroom floor as I did the walk of shame. It’s been nine months since I laid eyes on him. Yes, I’ve been avoiding this moment. But I can do this. I can fight my attraction for one night. Even if the moment I see him again, I know that night is going to come rushing back to me, along with the days and weeks of agony that followed.Because he still owns every piece of me.

I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

This post contains affiliate links you can use to purchase the book. If you purchase the book using that link, I will receive a small commission from the sale.

Release Date: September 9


?Dirty Little Secret, the first book in the Lake Street University series and what a wonderful start. I had no expectations when going into this book. In the end I had a food time reading this sweet romance. Although not a blow your mind read, but if you were to look up the definition of charming, you would find ?Dirty Little Secret.

The story introduces Finn and Willow, who have been in love with each other since they were teenagers. However, any relationship outside of friendship between them was forbidden by Willow’s brother, Max. He threatened bodily harm to any of his friends who dared show any romantic interest in his sister. As a result, Finn and  Willow danced around their feelings for each other. A dance can only last so long, though. Before you know it, Finn and Willow embarked on a secret relationship. How long can they keep their relationship secret from their friends and family?

I enjoyed getting to know the characters. Willow and Finn together burned up the pages. While Finn wanted to shout to the world about his feelings, Willow held back, fearing the fallout at the discovery of their secret. Aside from the challenge of keeping their relationship secret, they faced other obstacles. Finn stood by her through it all. 

The author whetted my appetite for the secondary characters, and now I am looking forward to their stories. Told from alternate POVs ?Dirty Little Secret made me tearing up, laughing and swooning. 

I loved the story, however, the story arc relating to the secrecy of Finn and Willow’s relationship took awhile to be resolved. I thought this aspect of the story dragged on for too long. Secondly, Max’s reaction to learning about the relationship puzzled me. 

Conclusion/Recommendation

Fans of friends to lovers of college romance should consider adding ?Dirty Little Secret to their Reading list.

 

Story Evaluation
Plot
3.5
Characters
4
World Building
3
Writing Style
3.5
Pacing
4
Cover
4
Enjoyment
3.5
Ending
4
Overall: One StarOne StarOne StarHalf a Star

 
 

 

?Dirty Little Secret
 

 

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About Rachael Brownell

Rachael Brownell is an award-winning author of young adult and new adult romance. 

Rachael lives in Michigan with her husband, son, snuggly dog, and hateful cat. She moonlights as a bartender a few days a week (her excuse to get out of the house and socialize) and writes almost full time.  Her first book was published way back in 2013 and since she’s released 30 additional titles. She writes all kinds of romance – dark, sexy, sweet. When she’s not writing her next novel, you can find her hanging out with her family, watching her son play baseball, or running on the treadmill at the gym (though she skips more days than she goes). She also enjoys golfing but is still learning, so if you see her on the course… stand back.

Reading this book contributed to these challenges:

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