Thank you for the opportunity to read and review this book. Unfortunately, I have lost interest since originally requesting.
This was a really good book. My first read by Albert, I will certainly read her again. A delightful LGBTQ book. Highly recommend.
This is a fun rivals-to-lovers romance between Conrad and Alden, who both play the fictional card game Odyssey and end up going on tour to play at different game stores across the country.
I always really enjoy fandom-related books so its no surprise that I enjoyed those elements of the story, especially because the game and lore were reasonably well explained. Through gaming we get to see Conrad and Alden grow and begin to understand each other better. They both start to realise that the other person isn't quite as bad as they initially thought and from there, their attraction grows.
One of the main characters is autistic and the book discusses internalized ableism, challenging it on-page. Homophobia and and the safety of young queer people (when their home becomes unsafe) are also poignant topics in this novel.
I received an arc of this title from NetGalley for an honest review. I usually love all of Annabeth Albert's books but could not connect with the characters in this book.
Lots of people love this one, for me it missed the mark a tad. I did not love way sex was used as a tool to make fun of a character, it did not land for me.
I loved reading this and I'm not into enemies to lovers at all. I really liked the dynamic between the two. one has to really think about whether he can go on the trip because of money and the other doesn't think it's a big deal because he has the money to go. The whole one bed situation makes enemies to lovers trope golden. Loved it!
I'm a huge fan of Annabeth's Gaymers series so this was a no brainer for me. I loved the whole concept of this one, it ticked all the boxes, enemies to friends to lovers, road trip, a gaming convention, and gorgeous characters. Can't recommend enough.
Annabeth Albert usually writes solid fiction, so I was excited to get a copy of this book for review!
The enemies to lovers trope is a favorite of mine, and this definitely hit the spot - the progression of emotions was slow and well-drawn and VERY enjoyable to read.
Despite this, the book didn't quite hit the same emotional notes as the previous books I've read by the same author - worth reading, but not a 'drop everything and read now' read, for me.
My first critique of this book was it was way too long for what it was. The second thing is that I liked the premise of the story which was built around a CCG which you don't see very often if at all. I do so enjoy the enemies to lovers trope but I didn't feel like Conrad and Alden were that big of enemies. The slow burn blossoming of their love was very cute to read but I have to confess I was speed reading through the latter quarter of the book just to finish.
I liked this book, the characters felt fleshed out, and the chemistry was incredible, but the pacing really needed work. I couldn't pinpoint one spot, but the road trip dragged on and the competition felt short-lived for being what they built up to the whole book. It just needed a revision in that.
I really enjoyed this LGBTQ+ and there's nothing like a cross-country road trip to get people talking.
Discovering this novel is new adult was a lovely surprise, I was expecting it to be YA. I did enjoy certain aspects of this novel, the rivals to lovers theme, the road trip and the ending. But somewhere in the middle the story lost it's plot for a while. I think this book could definitely have been shorter. However it also needed more of a detailed explanation of the game the guys played which was the main focus of the book. It was a fairly fun romance.
I am a little late writing this review since I read the book last year, but the emotional impact it had on me is still pretty fresh in my mind. Alden and Conrad's story was truly a breath of fresh air in an otherwise horrible 2020. Their story of sort-of-enemies to lovers is an incredibly good slow burn as these two dum-dums cannot seem to recognize that they are both crushing on each other as they both think they are not deserving of love.
Aside from the love story I also loved the way the card game world was built. I haven't played a lot of card games, but it drew parallels to Heartstone and Magic for me. Additionally, the way topics like mental health and sexuality were approached was very subtle and woven in seamlessly with who the characters were, but not made the sole interesting point about them. It was just a part of them, but not the most important one.
I loved this book a lot and I plan on re-reading it in the future, as well as probably buying a hard copy.
P.S. Whenever I read about the professor (Gamer Grandpa) I kept imagining Victor Garber, specifically him as Martin Stein in "The Flash/Legends of Tomorrow" xD
I absolutely adored this book. I love damaged characters finding love. Enemies to lovers for the win!
This felt more like a YA than an NA. Anyway, I really liked this story. I found Conrad and Alden to be lovable characters and really liked how their relationship progressed. At first, they don't like each other at all, and as the book goes on their relationship progresses. I thought it was really sweet and cute. There are a couple of things that were a bit predictable, but other than that it was an enjoyable read.
When Conrad (charming, charismatic, and effortlessly popular) and Alden (brilliant, guarded, and endlessly drive) end up alone on a cross country road trip at Odyssey convention, sparks fly between the two “big name fans.” Both have their own reasons for winning, but will their “in-game” rilvalry effect their “real life” relationship?
I thought this was a really fun book! It was a quick listen - which was good because I kept wanting to listen to it (instead of working on my lit review). This definitely won’t be my last Annabeth Albert book!
Thanks to @NetGalley and Sourcebooks Casablanca for my ARC!
DNF. Gave this book 10% and couldn’t go on. The characters were bland. The setting and storyline were not exciting and the writing was average.
This was really cute, and I liked Conrad and Alden's story, but the pacing of the second part felt off, and the ending was a bit flat too and seemed like something was missing.
I am a member of the American Library Association Reading List Award Committee. This title was suggested for the 2021 list. It was not nominated for the award. The complete list of winners and shortlisted titles is at <a href="https://rusaupdate.org/2021/02/2021-reading-list-years-best-in-genre-fiction-for-adult-readers/">
FULL REVIEW ON FRESH FICTION
CONVENTIONALLY YOURS by Annabeth Albert, the first in her new True Colors series, is a fun, new adult, road-trip novel. Annabeth Albert has a fresh writing style that makes this a cute, heartfelt, and humorous read, but also nuanced in many of the issues it explores. Forced proximity (including “just one bed”!) makes Alden and Conrad come to terms with how they really feel about one another, and also helps them work through some of the problems they have in their personal lives. Both of them have issues and pressures to deal with at home, and they both think that winning the competition will solve everything. Conrad is on his last bit of cash, hasn’t spoken to his family in over a year, and wants nothing more than to prove that he isn’t some kind of screw-up. Alden’s well-meaning but overbearing mothers want him to focus on getting an advanced degree in medical administration, but his heart has never been into it. Alden’s journey--both the literal road and his emotional path--was really interesting and well-written. He is neurodivergent and has had problems catching on to social cues and dealing with spontaneity his entire life, so many of the roadblocks he and Conrad face, on their trip and in their budding relationship, are new experiences for him. While they are one too many blips while they’re driving across the country, these stressful situations do create tension and reasons for our heroes to lean on one another for support. The actual convention goes by really quickly… For this to be the end goal, it doesn’t last all that long. The details of playing the Odyssey game are well-described, but readers who aren’t aware of some gaming jargon may be lost and/or find the lengthy descriptions of the games underwhelming. Nonetheless, there is a very convenient happily-ever-after, and the promise of more stories about this group of gamers is enticing.
AUTHOR INTERVIEW: https://freshfiction.com/page.php?id=10696