What happens when the search for the perfect date goes perfectly wrong? Don’t miss this charming romantic comedy from critically acclaimed author Kris Ripper.
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If I had to describe The Love Study in one word it would be ‘cute’. It’s a sweet look what it is about relationships that work for some people and not others. Declan is simply too darn adorable for his own good and Sidney is one of the kindest, most thoughtful people ever.
Declan still has misgivings about how he left his ex at the altar on their wedding day even though Mason has forgiven him and they’re still good friends to this day. His uncertainty about his choices and his fear of commitment makes him feel that he might never find something that’ll work for him. He meets Sidney through his friends and the two hit it off immediately. They both get the difficulties of relationships, especially when neither of them terribly interested in conforming to traditional relationship norms. Sidney suggests that he appear on their podcast and agree to go on a series of blind dates so they can discuss his experiences. The dates are interesting but the chemistry between Declan and Sidney becomes more comforting by the minute.
I liked The Love Study and what makes it work is how endearing Declan, and the rest of the friends are. Declan’s personality reminds me a lot of someone I might read in an Alexis Hall novel – sweet, a bit awkward and a bit self-deprecating. I liked that about Declan. As for Sidney, I liked their and they don’t come with any judgment. I think Declan needed someone like that in his life who was new to him and could offer a fresh perspective on life and love to him. Declan also has and I was amazed by how well that was handled here. Anxiety manifests differently for people and at different times and for Declan to eventually make connections (along with Sidney’s help) to what’s happening in the moment is such a big step for his own growth. Sidney is the type of friend you want in your corner with their patience and what seems like bottomless empathy to listen and encourage. I just loved the two of them together.
Would I recommend The Love Study? Yes! On a personal level, I appreciated looking at love and relationships not only from a LGBTQ+ perspective. I want to learn and become more aware of views or lives beyond that with which I'm familiar. I also liked looking through the lens of someone who feels the pressure of the societal expectations of relationships. Maybe not everyone wants what everyone else wants like flowers, or a big wedding or chocolate hearts. I liked seeing Declan and Sidney make their own rules. Can I also just say how awesome their friend group is? They are joyful and silly and so caring. I just loved them! I found this to be delightful reading where I could happily root for a couple to find their own version of happily ever after.
*Source: ARC provided in exchange for an honest review