Author of Act Like It and Pretty Face Lucy Parker returns readers to the West End, where it’s fireworks onstage and off in a sexy enemies-to-lovers showdown.
Once upon a time, circus artist Trix Lane was the best around. Her spark vanished with her confidence, though, and reclaiming either has proved…difficult. So when the star of The Festival of Masks is nixed and Trix is unexpectedly thrust into the spotlight, it’s exactly the push she needs. But the joy over her sudden elevation in status is cut short by a new hire on the makeup team.
Leo Magasiva: disgraced wizard of special effects. He of the beautiful voice and impressive beard. Complete dickhead and—in an unexpected twist—an enragingly good kisser.
To Leo, something about Trix is…different. Lovely. Beautiful, even though the pint-size, pink-haired former bane of his existence still spends most of her waking hours working to annoy him. They’ve barely been able to spend two minutes together for years, and now he can’t get enough of her. On stage. At home. In his bed.
When it comes to commitment, Trix has been there, done that, never wants to do it again. Leo’s this close to the job of a lifetime, which would take him away from London—and from Trix. Their past is a constant barrier between them.
It seems hopeless.
Source: audiobook borrowed from Hoopla
Trix has been through a rough, confusing patch lately. First, she breaks it off with a controlling boyfriend. Now she finds herself in the spotlight after the star of the Festival of Masks is out due to a freak accident. The sudden thrust into the limelight is disconcerting for her. Trix was always full of life and game for trying new things but since the debacle of her relationship, she's been apprehensive about everything. Even Leo, her former love, who has appeared on the scene again can see that she's behaving differently. Her confidence has taken a knock and she can't seem to get out of her own head. Leo coming back to work at the Festival of Masks only aggravates her more. They've always managed to push each other's buttons while simultaneously wanting to get naked with each other. Conundrum indeed. Leo has his own plans though. He's hoping to win a contest for special effects makeup that will open doors for him in the industry. Now that they're back and sharing the same air space stirs up all sorts of memories and feelings but two things are for sure: they're both hurting and they can see through each other.
Making Up is the more angsty of the three London Celebrities books so far. I think Trix and Leo's shared history lends itself to more tension between them. Something happened to both of them that makes them more reserved and overly cautious about stepping into another relationship, especially Trix.
As I was listening to it, it struck me that a cynical view would be to see Leo as a sort of saviour coming in to sweep Trix off her feet. I don't see him that way at all. If anything, he's a good friend who's constantly thinking of her and always encouraging her and never mincing his words. Trix, who's feisty, fiery, and always ready to start a battle of words with Leo, is never treated like a delicate flower. This is why I like this story so much. I can totally relate to what Trix is going through where someone close to her that she placed her trust in robbed her of her confidence. It's hard to cast away the gnawing, critical voice that seems to override self-belief. We could all do with someone like Leo who gently reminds her that she strong enough, she is worthy of good things and she deserves that happiness. It does go both ways because Trix looks out for Leo as well, wanting to see him make good on his own career aspirations. She notices a side of him that many don't know about and she also helps him find his footing.
"Nobody is magically immune to having their emotions messed with. It's not a question of moral strength. ... Strong, smart people make mistakes. And if the worst thing you ever do is believe in someone who doesn't deserve to breathe the same air as you, I think you're doing okay."
~ Leo, Making UpI knew I already loved this series but Making Up cinched it for me. It gave me a favourite new quote that resonated with me at my core. Its sensitive theme doesn't take away from the fact that this is a sweet romance full of optimism and love.