Book Info: NA contemporary romance, review copy received from the author, 264 pages.
Rating: 4.5 / 5 Stars
One & Only is a flirty NA book with substance, and the first book in the new Canton (College) series from Viv Daniels. (You may also know her as Diana Peterfreund, one of the original NA authors) This book is sexy and sweet, and can bust you right out of any book rut. The story is relatable and the characters are richly drawn and full of surprises. If you’ve written off NA books thus far, this may be the book that changes your mind.
Tess works hard for her education at a prestigious college and is envious of her fellow students that don’t have to struggle to pay for their own books. She works waiting tables at a popular eating-place, and to add insult to injury she gets harassed by the students she waits on. Tess doesn’t live at school, but lives with her mom to save money, and her unconventional family situation is a whole other can of worms. With school and finances on her plate romance has taken the back burner, but when she’s reunited with her “first” all bets are off.
A lot of times the college setting in NA is just used as the backdrop to romance, but in One & Only you do get more of a sense of the collegiate life. Tess has a scholarship to Canton, but it doesn’t cover a lot of the essentials so she has to scrape and save to make up the difference. A coveted lab symposium award would certainly help give her some breathing room. Complicating matters is that her partner is her old flame Dylan.
The bespectacled Dylan is an excellent candidate for your next book boyfriend. Dylan and Tess have some history- they met two years prior to their meeting at Canton. They had instant chemistry but circumstances kept them apart and now Dylan is dating Tess’ secret half sister of all people. Dylan is a nice guy and though the pair has some obstacles to overcome, you know, like the girlfriend, their stolen glances, texts, and almost-touches leave you wanting more.
Tess is keeping a big secret that’s eating her up inside, and has suffered a lot for her parents’ choices. She’s also trying to fight the “like mother, like daughter” stigma when she falls for another woman’s man. Speaking of the other woman, Tess’s half sister Hannah surprised me when she didn’t behave like an entitled, spoiled girl, but is someone who actually had some backbone to her and is a sympathetic character. Can’t wait to get her side of the story in the sequel and to see more Tess and Hannah scenes.
There’s a lot more to discover about this book, and if you can’t tell I’m quite smitten with it. The writing is engaging and draws you in, the college setting is used to its advantage, and the characters behave in ways you don’t expect. One & Only is on sale now, and Hannah’s story Sweet & Wild will be out next year.
Check out a guest post from author Viv Daniels, and an awesome giveaway here!