Cover Image: Sweet Talk

Sweet Talk

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Member Reviews

How can I possibly describe the swoony, dreamy, heart all aflutter state I'm in after this book? This is it, the perfect meet-cute, the perfect epistolary, the perfect strangers-fall-in-love story that made me laugh, snort, and sigh so damn hard. Cara Bastone's earlier books were lovely, but I was still not ready for the incredibly funny and sweet tenderness that was Eliot and the amazing captain-of-capable J.D. 

This is lightning in a bottle, because in no known universe should J.D. (using this name to avoid spoilers) and Eliot be perfect for each other.  This isn't about instalove or love at first sight; no, we have the much harder journey where two very different people are struggling with falling in love with a stranger because they are struggling to love themselves first. Eliot, our sweet cinnamon roll hero, is wrestling with PTSD and insecurities while J.D. is trying to hold everything together for her dysfunctional family.  If not for a tripped-up telephone number, these two should have never met or connected.  

The genius here is that Eliot and Jessie have met but not a way that should have led to this beautiful romance. Without giving away too much of their story, J.D. knows Eliot but adorably clueless Eliot is happily falling for her voice and texts.  And it is so lovely realizing how much they are in awe of each other even with just clues and crumbs about each other's life.  This was truly a squee-out-loud-while-reading romance.
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I enjoyed the first book so I was looking forward to this. I enjoy Cara and her writing. This was a perfect palette cleanser between thrillers. Heart warming and cute.
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The title has this described well it is a sweet story and the concept of their “meetcute” is a little different to the usual, which made it all the more intriguing. 
There were just a few elements that snagged on my enjoyment but nothing major, I appreciated the switching of genres, so we had a strong female and a softer male, both obviously have their flaws but if anything she is the strong, mysterious stranger and he is the one who needs rescuing.
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A thoroughly enjoyable romance read. The characters are loveable, as is their story. I would recommend reading ‘Call Me Maybe’ first as there is a slight spoiler, but it also works really well as a stand-alone.
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This review will be posted on 26 October 2021 to Amazon as well as www.goodreads.com/foiblesandfiction and www.instagram.com/foiblesandfiction.

Review:
My favorite contemporary romance of the year!  Sweet Talk is an original, heartfelt romance that will cause long bouts of swooning and uncontrollable laughter.  Proceed with caution when reading in public spaces.  Thank you to Headline Eternal for the review copy!

Jessie has turned herself upside down and inside out for her family over and over again, and this time she’s left her life behind to help her terminally ill pops who has moved in to a care facility.  One night in her pops’ kitchen with just her insomnia and a slice of chocolate cake for company, her phone alerts with a random text from her crush, Eliot.  Soon they’re sharing phone calls and inside jokes and personal secrets, but the one thing she can never share is who she really is because if Eliot knew the truth then he’d want nothing to do with her.  Can Jessie overcome her fears, or will their sweet talk end in broken hearts for them both?

“Loyalty doesn’t mean making it so nothing bad ever happens to the person you love.  And it definitely doesn’t mean sacrificing yourself in the process.”

I love a good romance and I’m not afraid to admit it.  As a frail old lady (yes, I’m only 29 but sometimes my ankles hurt when I stand after sitting for too long, okay?) who’s been married for ten years, a book that can give me that ache in my gut and the need to hide my goofy smile in the couch cushions is a blessed thing.  And this book gave me all those feels.

The dialogue was really what made this book shine.  It was so witty, so genuinely funny, that I couldn’t control the laughter erupting from my mouth every thirty seconds or so.  The back and forth dialogue really cemented the chemistry between Jessie and Eliot, and it made the characters’ relationships and connections so much more believable for its heart and humor.

“You use dating websites?”
“No, I don’t actually.  I don’t have anything against them, but I prefer to meet dudes the old-fashioned way.”
“Bars?”
“Monster truck rallies.”

I also really enjoyed and connected with the characters themselves.  It was so enjoyable to read about characters who put a spin on those you typically find in the contemporary romance genre.  Jessie was kind and sensitive and giving, and she also was covered in tattoos that were covered by the leather jacket she wore while riding her motorcycle.  Eliot was traditionally attractive and strong and successful, and he was also artistic and gentle and insecure about his neurodivergence.  Jessie can arm wrestle a bear and Eliot lines his slippers up next to his perfectly made bed.  Eliot also drinks a surprising amount of orange juice but that is neither here nor there.  What is relevant is that both main characters were genuine and heartfelt and I ended the book feeling like I’d made two new friends, friends who’d I had also voyeuristically creeped on during their vulnerable moments but that is also neither here nor there.

“Having feelings for someone isn’t about expecting them to be . . . anything, really.  It’s about knowing somebody.  And liking them for who they are.”

I do have to say that I was so so sooo ready for some spice and unfortunately there wasn’t any.  Some kisses, some snuggling, all of which were incredibly adorable.  But I was so in love with Eliot too (watch out, Jessie) that I was excited to see how he’d get down in the sack, especially because one does not often get to read about male characters in this genre who are aware of their privilege and as dismayed by men as women are.  I’m sure he would have been giving and intimate and lovely, but alas, there was no sexy time so I’m left to my own imagination.

If you’re a fan of Lyssa Kay Adams and Sally Thorne, of heartfelt romance with vulnerable characters and a dash of funny, then you’ll love this book too.  I promise you won’t be disappointed, just be sure to let me know when you’re done so we can swap sexy Eliot fancition.
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I loved how different the characters were to the usual romance tropes. Our heroine was a strong independent woman, but didn't have the stereotypical looks of a romantic heroine, whereas our hero suffered from learning disorders and wasn't a buff macho guy. I guessed early on in the book how our characters were related, but it was nice seeing them work it out, and their relationship develop from a friendship with a stranger. I appreciated that it was a clean read, and loved the ending. 10/10 would recommend
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Cara Bastone is definitely one of my favorite authors. She has a way with words and dialogue that is nearly unrivaled. This was basically an epistolary story where two people meet through an accidental text that leads to anonymous phone conversations that lead to feelings and oh so many complications!!! So instead of just writing to each other like in a true epistolary story they actually use their voice but the concept felt true to form. I loved how different both characters were from each other and yet how perfectly they fit and how only one of them know who the other was.

I was on the edge of my seat for much of the story and although I truly felt like I knew both characters, there were still some fun reveals once they did meet in person. Their story was sweet, endearing, and like a warm hug. I felt connected to both characters and their small community of family and neighbors in such a way that I am definitely going to read book one now that I realize this is a series!! 

Highly recommend!!
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I am a huge Cara Bastone fan! I loved the first audiobook in this series and immediately went to read her other book offerings, and fell in love with her characters and how emotional her stories are. And they feel so relatable! I loved this story of Vera's brother Eliot. He comes off so differently in Call Me Maybe, and I loved how his character develops here. While I really enjoyed this in ebook form, having experienced the first as it was originally intended (audiobook), I feel like this one would have been even better in audio. I will be listening very soon!
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I loved the concept of the first half of the book - girl gets accidental text from her crush and they start having nightly conversations without him knowing who she is.  The chemistry between Jessie and Eliot is so cute and I found myself constantly rooting for them while trying to guess who Jessie could be in relation to Eliot's life.  I found the second half of the book to be a little predictable and drawn out but overall enjoyed this quick read!  Great for fans of the Brown Sisters series and Beth O'Leary.
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Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for providing me a copy of Sweet Talk in exchange for an honest review.

Prior to this, i had actually listened to the Audible version of this audiobook released by Amazon, and had greatly enjoyed it. In novel form, I was not disappointed. 

I enjoyed the sassy, tough-as-nails Jessie and her relationship with cinnamon roll Eliot. Their opposites-attract romance was a low-angst guilty pleasure. That being said, I would have loved some steam with the fluffy goodness, but it was still an enjoyable read.

This would garner 3.5 stars out of 5 for me, and I am looking forward to more books from Cara Bastone.
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This was my first time reading Cara Bastone, and I have to say it was such a "sweet" read! Loved the characters and the plot development, I read throught the entire thing in one sitting! It was a different kind of read, as majority of the plot takes place virtually, through calls and text. A fun and easy read! Thank you to Netgalley, the author, and Headline for allowing me to read this ARC!
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A really sweet, cute read. I love Eliot, he's such an adorable, loveable character and also love how Jessie was a tough and loyal character. It does show that opposites attract! An enjoyable read.
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What an excellent novella from Cara Bastone! Her works are always incredibly astute about what it's like to be in a relationship--the good moments and the bad ones. I absolutely adored this story of a tough-girl (with a gooey center) and an ADORABLE puppy of a guy, who meet over a wrong number. While she knows who his, he has no clue about who she is. At least 95% of this novella is just text exchanges and phone calls, but I personally LOVE those types of romances. The epilogue is the 5% where they know each other and are in a romantic relationship. The only small issue I had was that it isn't revealed in the description that is a clean romance. Having read Bastone's other books, I was expecting some steam, but the only kiss between the MCs is in the epilogue. Of course, this didn't distract from how amazingly adorable this story is. I just wish I would have known this going in. I can't wait to read more of her novels!
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With one accidental text, Eliot and Jessie start an unexpected friendship, as the two find comfort in their insomnia one late-night conversation at a time. Sweet Talk is absolutely adorable! It’s not a steamy read, but it is light-hearted and sweet, following Eliot who struggles with dyslexia and who has recently started experiencing insomnia after experiencing trauma (and is just such an absolute source of joy), and Jessie, a brave, smart young woman who will do anything for her family. It’s dialogue heavy, but these characters just shine—their banter is funny and witty and I couldn’t get enough! I got some When Harry Met Sally vibes from these two as their conversations and feelings progressed. It is just so endearing and such a wonderful rom-com about loyalty, finding love unexpectedly, and acceptance. Eliot is just adorable, with his Ted Lasso-like optimism and exuberance. And Jessie is just so complex and I love bee drier humor. It’s a quick, fun read, and  I was smiling the whole way through!
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Sweet Talk by Cara Bastone is a light, sweet romance. The majority of the book takes place over text/ phone calls with Eliot not knowing who he is really talking to- so he calls her JD. The cuteness of him trying to find the identity of JD and the little twists and turns made for a quick and enjoyable read!

Thank you to NetGalley and Headline for the opportunity to read this book for an honest review.
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Jessie received an accidental voice message from her crush Eliot who hasn’t saved her name in his phone. She knows him well but Eliot can’t figure out how he knows her - and Jessie is doing her best to remain anonymous. Despite this, a comradeship is formed through their shared insomnia that turns into heartwarming romance. 

Throughout the book, the carrot that is Jessie’s identity and her family’s history with Eliot is dangled teasingly. While it is an element that kept me interested, I just really enjoyed both character voices. Anything could’ve been happening plotwise and I would've engaged! I was sucked into the overwhelmingly happy tone of the characters and their jokes. It was also unexpectedly fast paced; I ended up devouring this book in less than a day with 0 regrets.

I can’t believe that in this romance we get the TINIEST glimpse of them together and that was enough for me. It is sugary sweet but the exact kind of light-hearted romance I adore.
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I think I loved 'Sweet Talk' even more than I loved 'Call Me Maybe'. I just loved Jessie and Eliot so much and I loved seeing them fall for each other.

Similarly to the first book in the series, this book takes place mainly through phone calls/voice notes, but in this one the characters had actually met prior to the book starting (although Eliot does not remember). 

I loved the mystery element of this book and surprisingly didn't guess the 'plot twist' of who Jessie was to Eliot prior to their first phone interaction.

I simply loved Eliot. I loved him in the first book, and couldn't help but fall even more in love with him in this one. He was just so sweet, adorable and funny. I loved the part where Jessie was threatening to sue him and he said that he would gladly let her sue him as long as he got to speak to her everyday. 

I hope there are more books in this series in the future, but if not I will gladly pick up any other book that this author writes as I loved both of the books in this series. 

Thank you to Headline for providing me with an advance copy of this book via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.
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Super cute and fast paced. Hilarious and then heartbreaking. Ugh what more could you want from a love story?
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This was one of the sweetest books I've ever read. I adored the characters and laughed along with them. Hands down one of the best books I've come across all year.
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Four and a half stars.

What is it with re-imaginings of You've Got Mail (and yes I know that was itself a reimagining), this is at least the third one I've read this year?

This is glorious, Jessie gets a late night (aka 2am) voice message from her secret crush, asking if she's awake, it's clearly a misdial but how to respond? Jessie and her crush, Eliot get talking, they are both insomniacs and bond over trashy reality dating shows. Eliot doesn't know who Jessie is, he has a form of dyslexia and he clearly took Jessie's number for some reason but typed a random set of letters instead of her name, he's done it before and usually goes back and edits it with the correct name, but not in this case, so he calls her JD, which are two letters which are repeated in the gibberish he typed instead of her name.

What follows is a charming romance, Jessie can never reveal who she is to Eliot because of (very good reason) but Eliot is an open book to Jessie. It's cute, quirky and totally believable (unlike some of the re-imaginings), even better, it is the woman who knows all and there is none of the misogyny I see in the film.

Apparently this was originally an audio release which has now been released in print, I didn't know that was a thing, but I can see how that would work really well. I love how Eliot speaks women in his day-to-day life and tries to decide whether they sound like JD.

Loved, it, loved it, loved it.

I received a free copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley in return for an honest review.
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