Apparently I have a thing for books about dating shows… First I loved The Charm Offensive, and now this one captured my heart as well! Never Ever Getting Back Together was such a heartfelt, adorable and addictive read about friendship, letting go of the anger that controls you and falling in love when and where you least expect it, with wonderful well-developed characters and great bisexual representation.
The main characters in this book are Maya and Skye, who are both contestants on a reality show where their shared ex-boyfriend, Jordy, is supposedly looking for a second chance romance with one of his former exes. Maya however, is not in the show for a chance to win Jordy’s heart, but to expose to the world what a horrible, selfish, mean and manipulative person he is. The only problem is that when Maya gets to know Skye, and stop hating her for being the girl who Jordy cheated on her with, the revenge on Jordy might not even be the main focus anymore…
As always, Sophie Gonzales made a wonderful job with her characters. They are always fleshed out and relatable, both likeable and unlikeable at the same time and allowed to make mistakes and grow. I loved the dual POV from Maya and Skye and watching their love for each other develop from both sides. I also loved all the other female side characters and their strong personalities, and the way they all became friends (and not toxic competitors as is often the case in many reality shows) to support each other against their joint enemy.
I have only two minor complaints. The first one is that the beginning was a bit slow and it was a bit odd to have a reality dating show with teenagers. How many exes can you have when you’re barely 20 years old, really? It also took a bit too long for Skye to start believing Maya (or for Maya to explain the cheating situation in a way that made sense…), they really should have been able to sort that out much sooner. The other thing was the way Jordy was described. Sophie Gonzalez sure did a good job letting us readers immediately see what a scumbag he was, but I just wish that there would have been more to his character that could explain why all these smart and strong girls would ever fall for him in the first place.
But those minor complaints set aside, this was such a wonderful, fast-paced and addictive story about revenge, love and friendship with a completely nerve wrecking and unpredictable ending. I read the second half of the book feverishly, totally hooked and not able to put it down until I knew how it all would end. The writing style was so smooth and with so much banter and humor that I had so much fun reading it. But there was also so much at stake that my heart was beating nervously all the way through. I desperately kept my fingers crossed for the happy ending Maya and Skye deserved, but feared that Jordy would get away with it all as usual.
May and Skye was such a wonderful couple and I really appreciated how the bisexual representation was made in such a believable and relatable, but also warm and heartfelt way.
All in all, this was a completely adorable, sweet, witty and enjoyable romcom that I had so much fun reading and recommend with all my heart!
Thank you so much to the publisher St Martins and NetGalley for the opportunity to read an ARC of this gem! All opinions are my own and I am leaving my honest review voluntarily.
4.5 stars rounding up to 5
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All 1 Star 2 Stars 3 Stars 4 Stars 5 Stars Abbi Glines Abdi Nazemian Adam Silvera Adib Khorram Aiden Thomas Aisha Saeed Aislinn Brophy AJ Collins Alexandra Christo Alex Beltran Alexene Farol Follmuth Alexis Hall Alex Kelly Alex Sanchez Alice Dolman Alice Oseman Ali Hazelwood Alison Cochrun Al Riske Alwyn Hamilton Amanda Ferreira A. Meredith Walters Amy Aislin Amy Harmon Amy S. Foster Amy Spalding André Aciman Andy V Roamer Angie Thomas Annabeth Albert A. Poland Ashley Poston Ashley Woodfolk Ashlyn Kane Audrey Coulthurst Ban Gilmartin Becca Fitzpatrick Becky Albertalli Benjamin Alire Saenz Beth Bolden Bill Konigsberg B.L. Maxwell Briar Prescott Bri Spicer Brooke Skipstone Cale Dietrich Cara Dee Casey McQuiston Cassandra Clare C.F. White C.G. Drews Charlie Adhara Charli Meadows Chasten Buttigieg Chris Bedell Christina Lauren Ciara Smyth Clarissa Pattern C.L. Beaumont Colette Davison Colleen Hoover Courtney Kae Crystal Frasier C.S. Pacat Dallas Smith Daven McQueen David Biddle David Yoon Dean Atta Debbie McGowan Debbie Rigaud Debbie Schrack Deborah Harkness Delia Owens D.G. Carothers Dhonielle Clayton D.N. Bryn Douglas Stuart Dustin Thao Elisa A. Bonnin Elizabeth Acevedo Elizabeth Arroyo Elle Kennedy Elle Wright E.L. Massey E. Lockhart Emery Lee Emily M. Danforth Emily Mims Erin Watt Ernest Cline Evan J. Corbin Eve Morton Everina Maxwell Evie Dunmore Felice Stevens F.T. Lukens Grace Williams Gwen Martin Hannah Grace Hanya Yanagihara Hayden Stone Heather Truett H.E. Edgmon Hettie Bell Holly Black Hope Irving H.S. Valley Hudson Lin Ingrid Sterling Jacqueline Lee Jacqueline Woodson James L. Sutter Jamie Deacon Jandy Nelson Jax Calder Jay Hogan Jeanette Winterson Jeff Zentner Jen Bailey Jenna Evans Welch Jenn Burke Jennifer E. Smith Jennifer G. Edelson Jennifer Gilmore Jennifer Iacopelli Jennifer Kropf Jennifer Niven Jenny Downham Jenny Han Jeremy Ray Jesse H. Reign Joelle Lynne John Green Jonny Garza Villa Julianne Donaldson Julian Winters Kacen Callender Kami Garcia Kara Leigh Miller Kasie West Kate Larkindale Katharine McGee Kathleen Mareé Kathy Anderson KD Casey Kendall Grey Kevin Van Whye Kiley Reid Kim Fielding Kim Holden Kim Liggett Kitty Bardot Kris Ripper K.S. Marsden Laura Hall Laura Pavlov Laura Silverman Lauren James Lauren Shippen Laurie Frankel Leah Johnson Lee Matthew Goldberg Leigh Bardugo Leylah Attar Lisa Henry Lisa Williamson Lisa Wingate Liv Rancourt Liz Plum Lola Noire Lynn Michaels Mackenzi Lee Madeline Miller Magdalena Di Sotru Maggie Doolin Maggie Stiefvater Malin Persson Giolito Malorie Blackman Margaret Stohl Marie Lu Mary E. Pearson Mason Deaver Matthew R. Corr Melina Marchetta Meredith Russo Miel Moreland Mila Gray Miranda Kenneally Moa Backe Astot Morgan James M. Tasia Nancy Garden Natalie Haynes Nathaniel Shea Nicholas Sparks Nicola Yoon Nic Starr Nic Stone Nina Kenwood Nita Tyndall Nora Sakavic N.R. Walker Nyla K. Owen Lach Penny Aimes Phil Stamper Quinn Anderson Rachael Brownell Rachael Lippincott Rachel Hawkins Racquel Marie Rainbow Rowell Ray Stoeve Renée Dahlia Rhiannon Wilde Riley Hart River Braun Roan Parrish Robin Gow Roseanne A. Brown Rowan MacKemsley Ruby Moone Ruta Sepetys Ryan La Sala Sally Green Sally Rooney Sarah J. Maas Sarah Waters Sarina Bowen Sasha Laurens Saundra Mitchell Saxon James Serena Bell Shannon O’Connor Sidney Bell Simone Elkeles Siryn Sueng Sophia DeRise Sophia Soames Sophie Gonzales S.R. Lane Stephen Chbosky Stephenie Meyer Steven Salvatore Susan Mac Nicol Suzanne Collins Tahereh Mafi Tal Bauer Tamara Girardi Taylor Jenkins Reid Teagan Hunter Terry J. Benton-Walker Tiffany D. Jackson Timothy Janovsky T.J. Klune T.L. Bradford Tobly McSmith Tomasz Jedrowski Tomi Adeyemi Tracy Deonn Tucker Shaw Val Wise Veronica Rossi Veronica Roth V.E. Schwab Wesley Chu Victor Dixen Victoria Aveyard V.L. Stuart Xan Van Rooyen Yamile Saied Méndez