The Ex Talk
Author: Rachel Lynn Solomon
Publication Date: January 26, 2021
Genre: Contemporary Romance, Women’s Fiction
Note: This review is for an ARC and is my unbiased opinion.
Rating: ★ ★ ★ ½
Public radio co-hosts navigate mixed signals in Rachel Lynn Solomon’s sparkling romantic comedy debut.
Shay Goldstein has been a producer at her Seattle public radio station for nearly a decade, and she can’t imagine working anywhere else. But lately it’s been a constant clash between her and her newest colleague, Dominic Yun, who’s fresh off a journalism master’s program and convinced he knows everything about public radio.
When the struggling station needs a new concept, Shay proposes a show that her boss green-lights with excitement. On The Ex Talk, two exes will deliver relationship advice live, on air. Their boss decides Shay and Dominic are the perfect co-hosts, given how much they already despise each other. Neither loves the idea of lying to listeners, but it’s this or unemployment. Their audience gets invested fast, and it’s not long before The Ex Talk becomes a must-listen in Seattle and climbs podcast charts.
As the show gets bigger, so does their deception, especially when Shay and Dominic start to fall for each other. In an industry that values truth, getting caught could mean the end of more than just their careers.
I had a hard time figuring out my feelings about The Ex Talk. There were things I really loved about it, but the things I didn’t nagged at me. Here is what I loved and what I didn’t about this book.
What I loved:
- The Seattle vibe. A lot of the times books set in Seattle focus too much on the well known landmarks and not on the actual vibe the city and the people have. The Ex Talk hit the vibe spot on.
- The enemies to lovers trope. The banter was real, people. So was Shay and Dominic’s chemistry. I loved it!
- The public radio thing. I liked both the setting part and The Ex Talk show itself.
- Shay’s reactions to the conflicts she encountered.
- The evolution of all the different types of relationships Shay had.
- Overall, the writing was very good.
What I didn’t love:
- The whole lying about being exes for the radio thing. That ethical conflict bugged the heck out of me, even if it made for an interesting story.
- There was a section of the book from 15% to about 30% that I had to push myself to keep reading. I don’t know what was up with the section. Maybe too much set up toward the plot? All I know is that once I got back on track at 30%, things flew again for me.
- Shay was annoying at time. She could be very self-centered.
Honestly, I think if things hadn’t gotten slow for me for a chunk of this book, I might have rated it higher even if I didn’t love everything about it. It was a good, unique book.