All The Books I Can Read

1 girl….2 many books!

Review: The Spanish Love Deception by Elena Armas

on September 27, 2021

The Spanish Love Deception
Elena Armas
Self-published
2021, 487p
Personal purchased copy

Blurb {from Goodreads.com}: A wedding. A trip to Spain. The most infuriating man. And three days of pretending. Or in other words, a plan that will never work.

Catalina Martín, finally, not single. Her family is happy to announce that she will bring her American boyfriend to her sister’s wedding. Everyone is invited to come and witness the most magical event of the year.

That would certainly be tomorrow’s headline in the local newspaper of the small Spanish town I came from. Or the epitaph on my tombstone, seeing the turn my life had taken in the span of a phone call.

Four weeks wasn’t a lot of time to find someone willing to cross the Atlantic–from NYC and all the way to Spain–for a wedding. Let alone, someone eager to play along my charade. But that didn’t mean I was desperate enough to bring the 6’4 blue eyed pain in my ass standing before me.

Aaron Blackford. The man whose main occupation was making my blood boil had just offered himself to be my date. Right after inserting his nose in my business, calling me delusional, and calling himself my best option. See? Outrageous. Aggravating. Blood boiling. And much to my total despair, also right. Which left me with a surly and extra large dilemma in my hands. Was it worth the suffering to bring my colleague and bane of my existence as my fake boyfriend to my sister’s wedding? Or was I better off coming clean and facing the consequences of my panic induced lie?

Like my abuela would say, que dios nos pille confesados.

The Spanish Love Deception is an enemies-to-lovers, fake-dating romantic comedy. Perfect for those looking for a steamy slow-burn romance with the sweetest Happily Ever After. 

I’ve seen this around billed for fans of The Hating Game which is one of my favourite romances of all time. And from reading the blurb, this definitely sounded like something that has all the things I adore: an enemies to lovers, the fake dating trope, the grumpy/sunshine dynamic. It’s all there. And it’s pretty cheap – $4 on Amazon, I believe (Australian). So it seemed a good investment.

I did enjoy this but what I thought was going to be a 5-star read for me at first, did not pan out that way and there are a few reasons why….

Firstly – okay, The Hating Game thing. There are a lot of similarities. Like a lot. Both Josh and Aaron are physically similar. Big, intimidating men in terms of height and physique, well over 6 feet and muscly. They are similar in looks too, with both being dark haired and much made of their blue eyes. Catalina in this book, is small in stature, like Lucy in THG and there’s a lot of references to how big Aaron is and how small Catalina is. They work together and a misunderstanding right at the beginning where Lina makes a peace offering and Aaron reacts badly, leading to Lina feeling angry and rejected and disliking him, is also, very similar. There’s an offer of help and a fake date to a wedding. And Aaron is so painstakingly obviously head over heels in love with Lina, in the same way that Josh was in love with Lucy and had been from the very beginning. I dislike comparing books but these two have a lot of very, very similar things going on. And the further I got into the book, the more I kept noticing, more than I’ve listed here. Honestly, the similarities just went on and on and I started to get quite a bit uncomfortable with just how similar many aspects of the plot and descriptions, even the banter, etc, was.

Secondly, this is a hella slow burn and if that’s your jam, if you like things to draw out so long until it snaps…..I think I read a review which said no one even kisses here until like, the 300p mark. I read this on my kindle and I didn’t realise it was almost 500p when I started it but I did definitely notice from about the 50% on point that it was taking a long time to read and I read pretty quickly and this book should’ve been wrapping up at the point where things are finally starting to happen. For me, the tension went on just a bit too long and the whole ‘there was only one bed’ wasn’t taken advantage of in the way that it could/should have been. By the time it happened, the bubble had about burst and then the love scenes felt a bit cringey with some very over the top dialogue and then that dialogue continues throughout the rest of the story. It felt overdone, to be honest. The chemistry leading up to it was good, especially around the wedding…..but the actual breaking of the tension was a bit lacking, for me personally. If I could never read the sentence “or do you want me to claim it with my cock?” again, that would be excellent, thank you.

I don’t know how to rate this….. It’s one of those books where the more I think about it, the more I am wondering exactly what I’m rating it for. Am I rating it because it’s very similar to a book I’ve already read and loved and the aspects of this book that remind me of that book, are what I liked? I don’t know. I also loved Lina’s friend Rosie from work and how she keeps blatantly pointing out what she sees about Aaron (which Lina refuses to listen to, because Lina is dumb when it comes to that) and I’m quite interested in the fact that she’s getting her own book because I want to see if there’s something original in that. It’s difficult to ignore all the similarities this story has with a much-loved book, for me.

I think I need to stop thinking about this because the more I do think about it, the less I like it.

5/10

Book #161 of 2021


One response to “Review: The Spanish Love Deception by Elena Armas

  1. kay says:

    Oh no! So sorry to hear you didn’t enjoy it. I have it on my TBR and I’ve definitely been hearing mixed things about it (especially about how slow the slow burn is), so I’ve been hesitant about picking it up.

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