Lainie Graham is a theater star in London, as is Richard Troy. Lainie however is beloved of the public, where Richard’s bad boy antics have earned him a heap of scorn. In order to rehabilitate his image Richard’s publicist, and the publicist of the play these two actors are currently co-staring in, come up with a terrible horrible plan. They want Lainie and Richard to pretend to be in a romance. Yes, old Hollywood manipulation in modern day London. And then of course the two fall in love. It’s complicated by the fact that Lainie’s ex is also starring in the play, and his jealously takes some ugly turns.
Look, it’s a completely ridiculous plot line, but once you accept it the book just falls into place. Richard and Lainie snark at each other like Benedict and Beatrice, and the dialogue is hilariously delightful. I lost track of the amount of times that I laughed out loud. If the book had been nothing more then the two of them snarking at each other while falling in love, I would have been perfectly fine with it. I’m not really sure that the plot-line with the Will was especially necessary, except that it helped the book fulfill the romance novel plot expectation of a big fight/breakup. To be honest, I think the book probably would have been just fine with out that particular fight. The final big fight that breaks the pair up before they get a HEA is one of my least favorite tropes in romance novels, though this one was handled rather well. The two leads acted like adults and the mistake that caused the fight was honestly a believable error and not an “oh, I’m not talking to you because I’m a 12 year old” kind of deal.