Not Like the Movies

🐞 🐞 🐞 🐞


Kerry Winfrey


July 7, 2020

320 Pages


Chloe Sanderson’s best friend just wrote a box office hit movie about Chloe’s romantic love life. The only problem? All that happy-ever-after nonsense in the movie isn’t real at all. Chloe does work in a coffee shop, and she does have a hot boss. But she and said adonis, the gorgeous and brooding Nick Velez, aren’t lovers, or even friends really. Sure, they banter back and forth a bit, but that’s it. Also unlike the movie, Chloe’s father is sick, and he’s not going to get better. Her father’s dementia is getting worse every day, and it’s up to Chloe to take care of him, emotionally and financially.

Chloe considers herself an optimist, but even she has to admit that she’s exhausted. And after she and Nick are trapped together one dark and stormy night, and end up, whoops, making out, well, now she’s confused, too. All she knows is that she is juggling too much already and doesn’t have the time or energy for yet another relationship that requires her to give her all to someone else while getting little back in return. Nick seems like a person who could take care of her for a change, but Chloe has a hard time believing she’ll ever get a happy ending.


Not Like the Movies is a cute book. There are some laugh out loud moments, which surprised me, but the story also could have been edited down a bit to keep things moving more smoothly and swiftly. Chloe is funny, and I did enjoy her banter with Nick and with her other friends. One thing that bothered me, though, is how emotional she is ALL THE TIME. She’s going through a lot of stress, I get it. But she Ugly Cries like every other day. It bothers me when authors have to rely on a female character’s crises and tears to move the love relationship along. It’s lazy and, frankly, tired. Women are very capable of handling stress without publicly heave-sobbing about it.

Also, Nick says like ten sentences throughout the whole book. Another tired trope: men who can’t express their emotions. Haven’t we moved beyond this? I’m not offended. I’m just bored.

Still, this book was fun and light. It was a quick read, and a good way to forget about life for a few hours. I’d probably read another book by Kerry Winfrey.

Thank you Berkley and Net Galley for the ARC!

Goodreads | Amazon | The Book Stall

2 thoughts

  1. I think you’ve put your finger on why I don’t often enjoy romances – they do tend to reinforce outdated stereotypes. And yet I’m not keen on ones that deliberately reverse the stereotypes either! It’s very hard to write a romance where the two parties are equal but different enough to be enjoyable…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I completely agree with you. I’ve read more romances since Trump was elected, just for escape. But those tired tropes still get annoying. I’ve read enough by this point to know that some authors can pull it off, but a lot of romances can be very β€œbeen there, done that.”


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