Title: The Girl’s Got Secrets (Forbidden Men #7)
Author: Linda Kage @lindakage
Reviewer: Ivy @PoisonIvy70
Genre: New Adult Contemporary Romance
Release Day Blitz: November 28
Hosted by: S.B.B. Promotions
Rating: 3 stars
Here’s the same old “girl posing as a boy” story but with a rock-n-roll twist.
Remy Curran dreams of one day being in a band, except the group she wants to join refuses to hire a girl drummer. So, she auditions as a guy…and makes the cut.
Becoming “Sticks,” a member of Non-Castrato, isn’t quite what she dreamed it would be, though. She spends most of her time keeping up the subterfuge and learning how to walk, talk, act, and drink like a man.
But what’s even harder to deal with is acting oblivious when the band’s heartthrob lead singer, Asher Hart, treats her like one of the guys and not a woman. She never imagined he’d be so much more than a pretty face with a nice voice. But he’s better than perfect. He’s perfect for her.
When love and lies combine, Remy must keep up the act or lose everything. But who knew lying to reach one dream could prevent you from attaining an even bigger dream?
The Good: Little known fact – I used to play drums when I was a kid. I was never going to be famous, but I could easily slip into the mind of Remy Elisa Curran, half-Latina drummer. I’ve read other stories by Ms. Kage, before and her writing style is smooth, the characters are likeable and she certainly has a way with unusual hooks to stories such as this.
Remy goes to the open auditions held by Non-Castrato, a local rock band, hoping to live her dream of playing in a real band (and thumbing her nose at her ex, who stole her music). Then she meets the guys in the band, and they’re against having a girl in the band (well only one of them, really). Angered, Remy (with the help of her makeup artist friend Jodi) decides to get back at them by pretending to be a guy. Full on latex mask, fake package and everything. You can guess where it all goes from there. Yep, she falls for Asher Hart, the lead singer of Non-Castrato.
Remy being Latina was one of the draws of the book for me, and I really loved the little Spanish phrases peppered throughout her speech. Her complicated relationship with her family and their expectations, in particular her uncle, were good and I would have loved to have seen more of that conflict. But this is not that book. This is fun and there are alot of fun bits. Crazy and kind of made-for-TV, but fun. The story is cute, the romance builds up slowly and it’s very familiar. It was very easy to see this as a movie and the beats played out in that vein.
Asher’s tragic history went a long way toward sympathizing with him, and his desire to be loved was a HUGE saving grace. I really liked Asher, even with some of the things that he glossed over (more on that later), and I just wanted to hug him and let him have whatever he wanted.
Their personal moments, when they get a chance to connect, either through their sad childhoods or their love of music, were among the strongest scenes in the book. Her relationship with Asher is believable, and their chemistry is very good.
The Bad: The story hinges on Remy’s costume and man, was it elaborate. I could even buy the subterfuge…well, up to a point. Unfortunately, and this a major peeve of mine, this premise is very dependent on Asher not questioning some very basic things about Remy. There are a few scenes that made me side-eye him and while I eventually stopped rolling my eyes, these were hard scenes to swallow. Frankly, they made me think Asher was a bit of a dim bulb. A sweet one but dim nonetheless.
This is my first book in Forbidden Men series so I think it would have made a difference if I knew all the earlier couples. There’s a feeling of a payoff that I didn’t connect with as much, since I didn’t know those couples or their stories.
Issues aside, I did like Remy and Asher. This is a very cute romance with fun little touches, even if you have to have a HUGE suspension of disbelief to make it work. If you’re into girls masquerading as boys and don’t mind heightened bits of drama, you may like this.
*An ARC was received for an honest review.
I grew up on a dairy farm in the Midwest as the youngest of eight children. Now I live in Kansas with my husband, two daughters, and our nine cuckoo clocks. My life’s been blessed with lots of people to learn from and love. Writing’s always been a major part my world, and I’m so happy to finally share some of my stories with other romance lovers.