Book Review | Secretly Yours by Tessa Bailey

Thursday, February 2, 2023

*I received an ARC from Netgalley. All opinions are my own.*

Summary: Hallie Welch fell hard for Julian Vos at fourteen, after they almost kissed in the dark vineyards of his family’s winery. Now the prodigal hottie has returned to Napa Valley and when Hallie is hired to revamp the gardens on the Vos estate, she wonders if she'll finally get that smooch. But the grumpy professor isn’t the teenager she remembers and their polar opposite personalities clash spectacularly.

One wine-fueled girls’ night later, Hallie can’t shake the sense that she did something reckless—and then she remembers the drunken secret admirer letter she left for Julian. Oh shit.

On sabbatical from his ivy league job, Julian plans to write a novel. But having Hallie gardening right outside his window is the ultimate distraction. She’s eccentric, chronically late, often literally covered in dirt—and so unbelievably beautiful, he can’t focus on anything else. Until he finds an anonymous letter sent by a woman from his past.

Even as Julian wonders about this admirer, he’s sucked further into Hallie’s orbit. Like the flowers she plants all over town, Hallie is a burst of color in Julian’s grayscale life. For a man who irons his socks and runs on tight schedules, her sunny chaotic energy makes zero sense. But there’s something so familiar about her... and her very presence is turning his world upside down.

Rating: ⭐⭐⭐

My Thoughts: Tessa Bailey is always hit and miss for me and this one, unfortunately, was a miss.

I really liked Hallie and her personality. She was fun and just go with the flow. It was refreshing to read, because I am not like that at all. I am more like Julian ;) Definitely have the anxiety.

This is where my biggest issue with this book is. She made Julian's entire character development around his anxiety. It causes the breakdown of his relationship with Hallie. It is a huge issue. But, there is very little discussion about getting help. Literally, like one line. If you are going to make a person's entire character based on his mental health, then there needs to be a bigger discussion about getting help.

Also, the sex scenes weren't that great. Sometimes, Tessa Bailey can write good sex scenes, but a lot of times they just make me cringe.

Overall, I would say I enjoyed the romance, but too many other issues for me to be able to truly enjoy this book.

Release date is February 7, 2023.

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