Lovin' los libros

A book blog dedicated to young adult and new adult novels

Review: The Friend Zone by Kristen Callihan

By 10:54 AM , , , , ,

The Friend Zone (Game On #2)
    by: Kristen Callihan

Publication Date: May 5, 2015
Publisher: Self-Published
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Age Group: New Adult
Source: e-ARC provided via BocciPR in exchange for a fair and honest review.
Page Count: 309 pages
Order Links: Amazon | B&N
My Rating: 4/5 stars

Gray doesn’t make friends with women. He has sex with them. Until Ivy.

The last thing star tight-end Gray Grayson wants to do is drive his agent’s daughter’s bubblegum pink car. But he needs the wheels and she’s studying abroad. Something he explains when she sends him an irate text to let him know exactly how much pain she’ll put him in if he crashes her beloved ride. Before he knows it, Ivy Mackenzie has become his best texting bud. But then Ivy comes home and everything goes haywire. Because the only thing Gray can think of is being with Ivy.

Ivy doesn’t have sex with friends. Especially not with a certain football player. No matter how hot he makes her…

Gray drives Ivy crazy. He’s irreverent, sex on a stick, and completely off limits. Because, Ivy has one golden rule: never get involved with one of her father’s clients. A rule that’s proving harder to keep now that Gray is doing his best to seduce her. Her best friend is fast becoming the most irresistible guy she’s ever met.

Which means Gray is going to have to use all his skills to get himself out of the friend zone and into Ivy’s heart. Game on.

I love the best friends to lovers trope. It is one of my all-time favorites, which is why The Friend Zone appealed to me so much. Add in the fact it was about a hot football player and I was a goner. I absolutely fell head over heels for Gray Grayson you guys. (I admit, I'm a little obsessed with the name Grayson and calling a guy Gray for short...) This was my first book by Kristen Callihan and I am so psyched to go back and read Drew and Anna's story in The Hook Up! I loved her writing style, the witty and fun banter between the characters, and above all the steamy, but sweet romance she has created.
I loved how Gray and Ivy's relationship started. The book opens with a series of text messages and it was so fun to witness them become such fast friends. It made me nostalgic for my close guy friendships that I used to have. Their banter is so fun and I loved seeing how close they had become just through a series of messages. When they actually meet face to face, it was great to see there was no awkwardness between them. Their friendship flows so naturally and easily. The more time they spend together, the more the tension starts to grow as both realize their feelings aren't exactly friendly anymore. They want each other, but neither are willing to take that step for fear of ruining the best friendship they've ever had.
There did come a point where I felt like I was going to explode if they didn't fess up to their feelings for one another. I was like STOP DANCING AROUND THIS! Haha. I understand the hesitation, especially with Gray's upcoming career, his fear of losing her, and seeing how her dad treated his mom. Once they give in though... whew did the sparks fly! Their chemistry was so hot and there were some scenes where I felt like I was going to pass out!
Fans of The Hook Up will be happy to see Drew and Anna again and I am also a fan of Fiona, Ivy's sister and Dex, Gray's teammate. I wouldn't mind a book about those two!
I really didn't have any issues with the book save one event that almost felt like a plot device to me. I could have done without it, but at the same time it didn't ruin the enjoyment of the book for me either. I did like seeing how much Gray and Ivy needed one another though and that they would be there for one another through thick and thin. Every inch.
If you're in the mood for a cute friends to lovers story with low angst, a steamy romance, and adorable banter- pick this one up!

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  1. I'm a big fan of this trope as well. This book caught my eye, but I hadn't read the first one (and I CAN'T read books out of order), so I hadn't given it much thought. Seems like I need to give it a second look!

    Nicole @ Feed Your Fiction Addiction

  2. I'm so glad you enjoyed this, Jess! I loved this one as well and I thought it was a lot of fun. Ivy and Gray were way too cute for words. :) I agree with you on the plot device. It could have totally been avoided, but for me, it didn't take away from the story.
    Lovely review!

  3. Great review, Jess! Loved this book SO MUCH. I expected lots of angst because of the first one, but I was so happy with how little there was. The relationship was just so natural and chemistry-filled and HOT! Can't wait for the next book :)

  4. Ohhhh I love friends to lovers so this book is definitely for me! I also love that its low on angst! I gotta get this one. Great review!

  5. You know, Callihan's historical romance books aren't that great. But it seems like her contemporary romance books are really, really good? I especially love the cover ;D I don't know if I want to start another series but I am ALWAYS down for a romance book. Excellent review, Jess!

    Alyssa @ The Eater of Books!

  6. I'm a big fan of the friends to lovers trope myself and I absolutely loved how it was done here. Ivy and Gray's banter via text, and then in person, just made me happy. They had so much chemistry and it was so flipping natural when they finally came face to face. There was only one THING about the book that drove me nuts and I'm pretty sure you know exactly what it was. It all seemed just a little too ... convenient. But, I loved how everything wrapped up, so I was happy in the end. Definitely go back and read The Hook Up! I think you'll love it.


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