Early Review | Undercover Bromance by Lyssa Kay Adams

Undercover BromanceUndercover Bromance by Lyssa Kay Adams
Bromance Book Club #2
Contemporary Romantic Comedy
Berkley | March 10, 2020

About the Book: Braden Mack thinks reading romance novels makes him an expert in love, but he’ll soon discover that real life is better than fiction. 

Liv Papandreas has a dream job as a sous chef at Nashville’s hottest restaurant. Too bad the celebrity chef owner is less than charming behind kitchen doors. After she catches him harassing a young hostess, she confronts him and gets fired. Liv vows revenge, but she’ll need assistance to take on the powerful chef.

Unfortunately, that means turning to Braden Mack. When Liv’s blackballed from the restaurant scene, the charismatic nightclub entrepreneur offers to help expose her ex-boss, but she is suspicious of his motives. He’ll need to call in reinforcements: the Bromance Book Club.

Inspired by the romantic suspense novel they’re reading, the book club assists Liv in setting up a sting operation to take down the chef. But they’re just as eager to help Mack figure out the way to Liv’s heart… even though she’s determined to squelch the sparks between them before she gets burned.


Full rant ahead. Mild spoilers included. Be warned.

Having finished Undercover Bromance, I’m literally torn right down the middle.

I finished Bromance Book Club with a love of Braden Mack, and a hatred for Liv Papandreas. I’m a sucker for a great redemption story, which is why I was really excited to read Undercover Bromance. I felt positive Lyssa Kay Adams would find a way of endearing Liz to me.

In the end, it didn’t happen.

I really thought it was heading that way. I did. I was finding myself warming up to her, and I can say that there was growth in the character. I can understand why others felt satisfied with the end of this story. My problem, unfortunately, is that I’m really tired of romance novels that rely on the male character’s grand gesture.

Women f*ck up too!

Women are capable of grand gestures!

Their men deserve a real apology!

I really like this series. A lot. However, I don’t believe that a bad childhood is a good excuse for shitty adult behaviors. Seek frigging therapy. To all the ladies out there, please tell me you don’t believe that having a penis and eating your left over lo mein is good reason to treat someone like crap.

Liz is a jerk. She’s not just cranky. Her go to reaction is to be rude. It wasn’t cute, like Mack thought it was. It shouldn’t be excused. She should have to apologize for it. Liz “hates being lied to”, then she should treat people like she’s a safe person. Period. You get what you put out in the world.

So yeah, it sounds like I hated this book. That’s why I’m torn. I didn’t hate this book. Braden Mack is fantastic. He makes the whole story. He’s compassionate, brave… Reading about him kept me pushing through. Not even pushing, because I loved it. I didn’t want to stop reading.

Braden even made me feel for Liv. Did I think her bad attitude was cute, hell no. BUT, I believed Braden thought she was cute.

I always appreciate loving someone in spite of their flaws.

I want to rate down a book that pretends to be progressive, but really isn’t. I mean, in a real feminist book the women wouldn’t need the man to “win” her over. She’d choose him, and fight to keep him when she messed up.

But, I can’t rate it down, because there was too much I loved. I just needed the end to be fair. If Braden was in the wrong, I needed to believe he was. He wasn’t. He shouldn’t have been the one everyone blamed. He shouldn’t have been the one everyone expected to “fix it”.

That just pissed me right off.

Thank you to NetGalley and Berkley for providing an ARC, in exchange for an honest review.

About Birdie

Don’t look for her in any bar, club, crazy raging party, or anywhere there may be a large gathering of strangers. She’s more likely to be found tucked into the corner of the couch watching one of her favorite shows, or preferably under a comforter with her current novel.

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