The level of excitement I had for reading this book was unreal. As a huge fan of Hibbert’s adult romances, and just down right giddy about the Joy Revolution imprint, HIGHLY SUSPICIOUS AND UNFAIRLY CUTE was one of my most anticipated 2023 reads, and I was honored to be selected for the book tour with TBR and Beyond Tours! Scroll down for my full review, and check out the rest of the tour HERE.
Title: Highly Suspicious and Unfairly Cute
Author: Talia Hibbert
Publisher: Joy Revolution / Get Underlined
Publishing Date: January 3, 2023
Genre: Young Adult Romance
From the New York Times bestselling author of the Brown Sisters trilogy, comes a laugh-out-loud story about a quirky content creator and a clean-cut athlete testing their abilities to survive the great outdoors–and each other.
Bradley Graeme is pretty much perfect. He’s a star football player, manages his OCD well (enough), and comes out on top in all his classes . . . except the ones he shares with his ex-best friend, Celine.
Celine Bangura is conspiracy-theory-obsessed. Social media followers eat up her takes on everything from UFOs to holiday overconsumption–yet, she’s still not cool enough for the popular kids’ table. Which is why Brad abandoned her for the in-crowd years ago. (At least, that’s how Celine sees it.)
These days, there’s nothing between them other than petty insults and academic rivalry. So when Celine signs up for a survival course in the woods, she’s surprised to find Brad right beside her.
Forced to work as a team for the chance to win a grand prize, these two teens must trudge through not just mud and dirt but their messy past. And as this adventure brings them closer together, they begin to remember the good bits of their history. But has too much time passed . . . or just enough to spark a whole new kind of relationship?
Top 5 Reasons to Read Highly Suspicious and Unfairly Cute
- Talia’s writing style – if you’ve read any of her adult romances, you’ll get her signature writing style with incredible characters, and plenty of witty banter between relatable, real, and well-written characters. Often neurodivergent, I love that Hibbert writes characters I want to know more about, just living their lives. IN HSUC, I love that Celine is a vulnerable true to herself MC that is so open with who she is, and goes after it. As in all of her books, Hibbert writes her characters with care and love and it shows.
- It’s best friends to enemies to lovers, and in a YA is there any better trope? Celine and Bradley used to be best friends until they weren’t. As the two are forced to work together, their close proximity brings up their past and present issues. Obviously, they fall in love, and I just adored their story.
- A little friendly competition never hurt anybody. I LOVE that the survival course puts them in the perfect setting for a little adventure, outside of their box, in front of Celine’s idol, and works perfectly for the YA age group and is a realistic situation that also provides a lot of fun in the story. The side characters of their fellow competitors, their family, and friends all added to the story in such a fun way, and I really enjoyed how there was plenty of action but it all had a purpose and was tied so well together.
- Quirky humor and banter a-plenty, yes, please. As a reader, often there is a difficult balance of the romance and the comedy that create the rom-com, and Hibbert nails it in Highly Suspicious and Unfairly Cute. From witty banter between the lovebirds, to the way they communicate with friends and family, this one had plenty of laughable moments that brought me joy.
- ALL THE REPRESENTATION. We’ve got amazing mental health rep in this book, a male lead with OCD, and a female whose intrusive thoughts make her SO relatable I could’ve cried from happiness. A plus-sized female lead falling for a star athlete, it was everything.
About the Author:
Talia Hibbert is a New York Times, USA Today, and Wall Street Journal bestselling author who lives in a bedroom full of books. Supposedly, there is a world beyond that room, but she has yet to drum up enough interest to investigate.
She writes steamy, diverse romance because she believes that people of marginalised identities need honest and positive representation. Her interests include makeup, junk food, and unnecessary sarcasm. Talia and her many books reside in the English Midlands.