Review Tour ~ Twelve Truths and A Lie By Christina Lee ~ (Review, Excerpt + Teasers)
COVER DESIGN: Natasha Snow
RELEASE DATE: 9-19-16
Aurora Jones has it all—a job she loves as a child and family therapist, supportive friends, and a decent place to live. What she doesn’t have is much luck when it comes to dating men. And not only are her choices terrible, she also hasn’t been boyfriend free since she was a teenager. So she places herself on a sabbatical of sorts. No dating for twelve months.
Cameron Miller has had a crappy year. His girlfriend fell for his best friend and to ease the pain, he drowns his troubles in more booze and women than he can count. When his buddies finally slap some sense into him and urge him to focus on his new position as a special education teacher in an urban school district, he decides to get his act together.
Away from the prying eyes of their mutual friends, Cameron and Aurora agree to hang out once a week in their newly dubbed Chastity Club. Number of members? Two. It’s a chance to find solace, companionship, and something neither anticipated – a burgeoning attraction. But when Cameron invites Aurora to be his fake date at the reunion his ex-girlfriend and best friend will be attending, their passion ignites. What happens in Chastity Club stays in Chastity Club, right? Until they discover that a year of self-truths might actually lead them to true love.
“Well,” I explained, after swallowing a bite, “depends how, um, sexually frustrated you’ve been and—”
“Extremely,” she said without hesitation, and I nearly choked on the cheese sliding down my throat. “I mean, Richard doesn’t even—”
She smashed her hand over her mouth, looking positively mortified. “Shit, never mind.”
“Who’s Richard?” I asked, thoroughly confused, wondering if I’d missed something in the conversation.
“Oh, God,” she said. “Can you forget I even said that?”
“Not a chance,” I replied, knowing it would bug the shit out of me all night if she didn’t fess up. “Don’t be embarrassed, we’ve talked about plenty of things already…”
As she took deep breaths, I tried to match up the name Richard to one of her old boyfriends she might’ve mentioned. Or was she more mortified that I’d brought up the idea of being sexually frustrated?
“Look, I wasn’t trying to embarrass you,” I said, attempting to dislodge her hand from her face. “Guys talk about jacking off all the time, I don’t know if girls do, but—”
“Of course we do,” she finally huffed out, her eyes bulging. “Richard is the name of my vibrator.”
Oh fucking Christ, what a visual. My dick immediately tented against my zipper. In that moment, I was so grateful the tablecloth was covering me. After I got over the initial shock and stimulation of her bringing up her vibrator, I focused in on the fact that she had named it in the first place. Richard.
I couldn’t hold back a snort and that caused a chain reaction in Aurora, who began giggling and then full-on laughing. Her face was so beet red that when we made eye contact and I said, “Richard. As in dick?” she howled even louder, causing the people in the booth behind her to turn around and stare.
***Copy provided to Bayou Book Junkie in exchange for a fair and honest review***
Aurora is a social worker working with children and their families. Aurora was raised by a single mom who had drinking issues and always had a boyfriend or was looking for love. And Aurora has found that she's repeated the same behavior by never being without a boyfriend since high school. She has a great group of friends who have challenged her to spend one year single.
After his girlfriend cheated on him with his best friend, Cameron went on a binge of one night stands and drinking. Cameron's friends challenge him to go six months without a hook-up. Aurora is 9 months into her challenge and Cameron, three months when they are reintroduced to each other by their friends. They jokingly start the Chastity Club, and have a "weekly" meeting that starts out awkward but turns into a friendship. Aurora and Cameron have a lot in common and believe in the same core values which furthers their attraction to each other. When Cameron decides to attend his class reunion, he's not looking forward to seeing his ex and best friend there together. Aurora agrees to attend with him for support and so he's not alone.
I really liked both of these characters, they were just two regular, everyday people trying to do better in the world. They both had difficult but important jobs, and they were really well written. I think the challenges of being single written in the story are important for people dating, a good reminder that sometimes you need to be single to center and find yourself again before jumping into new relationships and that there are valuable lessons learned in those spans of being single.
Cameron and Aurora had great chemistry in addition to their friendship, and made for a very enjoyable read. The one issue I had with Aurora was her constant monitoring/overthinking of Cameron's drinking before the reunion and she was doing all this, while she herself was drinking. I can understand the concern about being with someone who drinks excessively and about having alcohol be a part of your childhood, but it felt hypocritical that she was drinking while doing it.
I, also, really enjoyed the supporting characters. They seemed like a group of people you'd want to be friends with. Honestly, I wondered if the friends were trying to set Cameron and Aurora up together with their aligning single challenges coinciding in time-frame. I really hope there is another book that focuses on Maddie and Sydney because that was really mean of the author just to leave us hanging like that!
I thought Aurora and Cameron's story was well-written! It was sweet, low-angst and not instalove. And I really enjoyed the important issues the author brought into the story, the important jobs that both Aurora and Cameron have and how those in the field don't get to clock out at the end of the day. This was a really enjoyable story, that I would definitely recommend!
Rating: 4.5 stars!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Once upon a time, Christina Lee lived in New York City and was a wardrobe stylist. She spent her days getting in cabs, shopping for photo shoots, eating amazing food, and drinking coffee at her favorite hangouts.
Now she lives in the Midwest with her husband and son—her two favorite guys. She’s been a clinical social worker and a special education teacher. But it wasn't until she wrote a weekly column for the local newspaper that she realized she could turn the fairytales inside her head into the reality of writing fiction.
She’s addicted to lip balm and salted caramel everything. She believes in true love and kissing, so writing romance novels has become a dream job.