Title: Charade
Author: Nyrae Dawn
Series: Games
Publisher: Forever (Grand Central)
Published: October 22, 2012
Pages: 213

From the Publisher: Nineteen-year-old Cheyenne tries to portray the perfect life to mask the memories of her past. Walking in on her boyfriend with another woman her freshman year in college threatens that picture of perfection.

Twenty-one-year-old Colt never wanted college and never expected to amount to anything, but when his mom’s dying wish is for him to get his degree, he has no choice but to pretend it’s what he wants too.

Cheyenne needs a fake boyfriend to get back at her ex and Colt needs cash to take care of his mom, so they strike a deal that helps them both. But what if Cheyenne’s past isn’t what she thought? Soon they’re trading one charade for another—losing themselves in each other to forget about their pain. The more they play their game, the more it becomes the only thing they have that feels real.

Both Cheyenne and Colt know life is never easy, but neither of them expect the tragedy that threatens to end their charade and rip them apart forever.

 We have our awesome friend, Sim, joining us for the review today!!!!

First Thoughts:
Celeste: 5 red smoking hot stars! I have all the feels. All. Of. The. Feels. This book got me hooked for so many reasons. I couldn’t get enough. If there is any romantic in you at all, you need to read this!

Sim: 4 stars (writing while I read this) two chapters in and it’s great! Love the banter between the two and their reasons to start this ‘fake date’ even though the attraction to each other is more than obvious.

Ana:  5 stars LOVED!  The characters were great, the feelings were so real, the story touched my heart…can’t really ask for more!!

Plot, Pacing and Style:
Celeste: Ah yes, you are thinking I have read this story a million times: opposites attract when tatt’d up bad boy and goody two shoes girl fall for each other, but no, it’s not that story. Well, it is on the outside, but so much more when you start reading. Trust me! Neither Cheyenne or Colt is how they appear to everyone else, and we get to see them learn about each other and themselves as they deal with their demons.

The story is told from alternating first person POVs. Yes, my favorite!!!! I loved seeing the relationship unfold through both of their eyes.

Sim: Loved reading each chapter as they skip from one POV to the other. That way the story is from both sides and you read both their motives. The style is short, quick and to the point; no unnecessary endless philosophical phrases. Plot: funny and good, even though it’s nothing new. The bantering is funny and very entertaining. The deep connection they have is heartwarming: they’re true soulmates.

Ana:  I agree with Celeste and Sim, I loved the alternating POVs.  To me, there’s nothing better than to experience the story from several angles…as long as it’s done well.  And, here it was done perfectly.  Hearing the story in both their voices really helped me fall in love with these characters.  The story was smooth and moved quickly.  Very well written!

The MCs:
Celeste: Where to even start? I loved both Cheyenne and Colt. *whispers* Here’s the thing, I love when the guy in the book has a naughty mouth. Um, Colt and his f-bombs every other word were delicious. I couldn’t get enough. It was so bad, yet so very, very good. He had the tough image going on, but he was of course a really good person on the inside. I loved that even Colt didn’t realize that about himself for a long time. He was ridden with guilt.

Cheyenne was a great protagonist, she was honest and wore her heart on her sleeve. I adored her honesty, even with herself. She knew what her faults were and wanted to fix them, she just needed someone to share the burden. I couldn’t help but love her.

I feel his heart beat against my back
and wonder if mine matches his rhythm.

Sim: Loved Cheyenne: the goody two shoes with some spunk in her! She says what she thinks (although not all the time). Colt: the guy is great! Loved his way of talk …. and his moves LOVE how he uses ‘princess’ to get underneath Cheyenne’s skin (not in a good way at first lol) and ‘Cinderella’. Somehow it makes you feel how precious Cheyenne is to him, even though he won’t admit it to himself at first.

“Tomorrow…don’t remind me I said this. I won’t want to talk about it, but tonight…keep me safe.. Her words know the air out of me like getting slammed in the chest. “You’re safe with me.” Which is probably the biggest fucking lie I’ve ever told.

 ‘I don’t bite…well, unless you want me to.” Part of his mouth quirks up. “I already told you how much women like my mouth—’

‘Just know that you can. I won’t tell. I might not be able to do much for you, but I’ll hold your secrets.’

Ana:  Although these characters were as different as could be in initial appearances, their story actually showed how similar they were.  The heartaches they faced and their need to connect (whether they knew it or not) was what pulled them together.  I loved Colt pretty much from the first thoughts he shared.  His honesty was refreshing, his cockiness made me tingle and his heartbreak made me cry.  Cheyenne was strong and sassy.  Not the kind of strong that hits you in the gut but the kind of strong that silently and steadily makes things happen.  I loved her character!

Romance /Chemistry:
Celeste: oh mah gawwwwd, YES. It was freaking hot!

Sim: They’re fun!! Their banter is fun, but dang, they’re hot together! And Colt knows how to use his affect on Cheyenne. I love how they know each other just by looks or the sound of the voice. Every girl dreams of a guy who can read her mind and gets her, right? The fact that they have to just look at each other to understand what the other needs: so, so good!

Ana: No denying the chemistry there.  I could feel it in every word, see it in every action.  Their conversations as well as their “kissy-time” was filled with the best possible romantic tension!

Title/Cover:
Celeste: I love the title, as it’s simple and to the point and just right. The cover doesn’t really work for me even though it’s pretty. It’s just not Colt. That guy is a little too clean cut for me. I mean, where are his tattoos? It’s a perfect Cheyenne though.

Sim: Title is very fitting, but even though I’m just two chapters in the cover isn’t fitting: The characters don’t seem to fit my view of them. I had a different cover in my iBooks that seemed to fit a bit better though. (black and white with part of a tattoo showing)

Ana:  I agree with the girls…love the title, not too sure about the cover.  It’s nice but doesn’t reflect the book for me.

Twists and Turns:
Celeste: Oh yes. I was thinking things were wrapping up…I was going along pretty heartbroken and needed some serious hand holding, but then I got hit even more. I didn’t see that coming at all! Oh, Nyrae!!! How could you do that to my heart? I love you for it though, soooooo good!!

Sim: Omg the twists and turns!! Loved how their game became more, and at the end turned into something completely different and meaningful. I cried my eyes out at one point but understood the importance of it in the book. Right when you think all is good and well your heart gets ripped out! Killed me, but I loved it!

Ana:  It seemed pretty clear cut as far as stories go and then…bam!…things happened that stirred stuff up.  Of course, most of the twists and turns gave me heartache and made me cry….not fair, Nyrae…not fair!

Ending:
Celeste: After I went through a ton of tissues I loved it! It ended in the perfect place, and I felt all warm inside.

Sim: The ending is perfect: good to see how they ended up

Ana:  Perfect end to a perfect story!

Gripes/suggestions:
Celeste: Not a single thing. Seriously!!!

Sim: nada!

Ana:  A warning at the beginning to grab some tissues before you start the story would have been nice.  Other than that…nothing!!

Final Thoughts/Rec It?
Celeste: Anyone who has any shred of a romantic in them needs to read this ASAP. LOVED!!

Sim: absolute read! Loved the style and the fast pace.

Ana: Absolutely!!!!!

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