Heat Level: N/A. No sex in this one.
Publication date: 04/27/2021
Kindle Unlimited: Yes
I honestly can't say enough nice things about this book, but Imma give it go anyway:
Plot overview: Dog groomer Juliet Nolan takes a job as a seat filler at a Hollywood awards show. There, she meets Noah Douglas, a big time A-list actor. Hilarity ensues.
Trope bingo: Famous guy/girl next door romance, friends to lovers romance, slow burn, no sex or cussing.
First of all, if you read any of my reviews, you know that I don't read a lot of romance novels that don't include sex and cussing. (Note: I don't say "clean romance". That is intentional.Here's why.) It's not a conscious choice I make, though. I don't mind no sex/fade to black sex romances. They just aren't usually what I'm drawn to. But in this case, I think it's important to point out that while there's technically no sex in this book, that DOES NOT mean the book isn't sexy. The push-and-pull between Juliet and Noah, the will-they-or-won't-they (I mean, OF COURSE they will...but still), and the sheer longing between these two characters is actually very sexy. So, don't let the lack of descriptive sexy times turn you off (ha!) of this one.
That said, there's a lot to love here. Like:
Reylo friendly content
If you, like me, FIRMLY believe that Rey and a redeemed Ben Solo were soul mates who deserved to live a long, happy life together romance novel style and were BITTERLY disappointed when The Rise of Skywalker RUDELY and STUPIDLY killed Ben off at the end of the movie, you, my friend, are a Reylo. While reading this book, you'll picture Ben Solo/Adam Driver in your head. Noah has a very Adam Driver-like blend of hot intensity and adorkable awkwardness that is very attractive to me both as a romance reader and a Reylo.
Y'all know I dearly love me some witty banter. So, when I say that this book has witty banter that made me snort-laugh more than once, you can believe it. There's some seriously funny stuff here.
A heroine with a pathological fear of kissing? That's a new one for me, and I read A LOT. I've seen just about every issue out there in Romancelandia, so anytime I find something new it really makes an impression on me. I love it when an author takes risks and tries something completely different--and Sariah Wilson does that beautifully here. The reasons for Juliet's fears made good sense to me, and her desire to try and overcome them was inspiring--as was Noah's patience with her.
Light, fluffy, low-angst awesomeness that actually IS rom com
Lately, I've seen lots of romances with cartoon-y covers being marketed as rom coms that aren't rom coms at all. Frankly, it makes me stabby and prone to leaving terrible, mean book reviews. But this book is exactly what I think a rom com should be. It's light, fluffy, low-angst, and most of all, IT'S FUNNY. (That last one is in shout-y caps because I felt the need to emphasize that point. Rom coms are supposed to be funny. Not all authors/publishers seem to understand that these days.) There are also hijinks and hilarity, which are VITAL to a good rom com, in my not-so-humble opinion.
So, all that said, if you're in the mood for a light, hilarious rom com that is all kinds of adorable, (or if you're a Reylo who just wants to pretend this is an alternate universe read featuring Rey and Ben Solo...whatever...I don't judge) I highly recommend The Seat Filler.
Full disclosure: I received an ARC from the author, but that in no way influenced my review.
Does this book contribute to or help crush the romance stigma?
No rehab needed. This one's totally stigma free.