Member Reviews

I struggled to get into this at first, but halfway through I really started to enjoy it. It felt a little ridiculous at times, but it was so fun to go along with. The premise of the competition for the $10 mil and how it was written reminded me of some of my favorite reality tv shows and was easy to immerse in.

Was this review helpful?

What a cute romance! This one has all the makings of the perfect romance! Great characters, a great small town, such great side characters, laugh out loud moments, heart-felt moments, and a big hug at the end!

Was this review helpful?

This was so much fun!!! I enjoyed every second of this quick read. It had everything I love: insta-like, small town gossip, an amazing dad, scavenger hunts, Barbie jeeps, not a ton of drama you name it!

I couldn’t stop laughing at Carter and Jess’s banter and Nikki’s golden comebacks. I adored every townsperson and their relationships. There was just so much to adore here.

Would definitely recommend if you’re looking for something fun and easy!

Was this review helpful?

While this book started off strong and I normally love enemies to lovers romances, it didn’t stay strong for me. It almost felt too long and it could have benefited from using less POVs. I just wasn’t interested in hearing from anyone else except for Jess and Carter.

Thanks to NetGalley and Putnam Group for an eARC in exchange for my honest review.

Was this review helpful?

This was a good contemporary romance, with a unique premise! I really enjoyed reading it. Overall, I would recommend to those who think it sounds interesting!

I received an e-ARC from the publisher.

Was this review helpful?

Ugh what a cute story. It was charming and exactly what to expect from LaCie Waldon. I loved her other books and loved this one too. The characters are charming and full of the that small town charm even Nikki with all her gruffness had a soft side.

I love easy sweet romances like this one full of heart and love.

Was this review helpful?

I will drop anything I'm doing to read a Lacie Waldon book. Her unique ability to transport us to her plot is so genius. This book was absolutely wonderful. I loved the small town game and the feel of dissaray and unity between the townsfolk. Also, steam never hurt anyone!

Loved it! Thank you to the publisher for the advanced readers copy.

Was this review helpful?

This was a cute book that kept me smiling. It's probably not one that will stick with me long term, but it was a good summer book to dive into. I have never read a book with the premise of a town competing to win money, and I love when a book has an original story line.

I enjoyed the back and forth banter between Jess and Carter. It was easy to slip into their world and watch them fall in love. I also really liked the way the friendship with Jess and Nikki evolved. Nikki was probably my favorite character because she was so honest and grew the most out of them. I adored the way the relationship between her and Jess's dad played out.

This book was full of lovable characters, heartwarming moments, laugh out loud situations, and a town you wish truly existed so you could move there. I recommend picking it up this summer...or any time for that matter!

Thank you to NetGalley and Putnum and Son's for the arc in exchange for my honest review!

Was this review helpful?

I have to say I did not love this story; I did not feel a connection to the characters. Don't get me wrong I loved the small town feel and had few favorite characters. I did think the author did a great job of getting small town community divided to come together for one common goal. I did love the passion between Carter and Jess, Jess was one character I could relate to. She loved her family so much, she put everyone else before herself and has best intentions to see the good in people. I think that is what drew Carter to her.

Small town, one big prize, handsome outsider come together in Redford, GA. Jasper Wihelm the towns eccentric benefactor dies, and, in his will, he asks the town to compete in these games to win millions of dollars. He has the team already paired up. This causes some tension between them, but can they put difference aside for the common good of their beloved town?

Thank you to Netgalley and G.P. Putman's Sons for copy of this book for my honest review.

Was this review helpful?

3.5/5 🌟

This was such a sweet and heartwarming story!

The small town of Redford, Georgia compete to win 10 million dollars after the town's benefactor dies.

The competitors have to compete in various quests AND each person teams up with their "arch nemesis".
The books primarily follows Jess Reid, a local of Redford and Carter Barclay, an outsider of Redford who happened to be visiting his grandfather.

This story was funny and a high-spirited book.

The only thing I was not fond of was the multiple POV's throughout the novel. I thought this book would benefit from just a POV of Jess and Carter. I was only reading the eBook version, so the audiobook version might be more entertaining.

Thank you NetGalley for the

Was this review helpful?

I'm not sure exactly what I was expecting going into The Only Game in Town, but it was such a fun read and a nice twist on contemporary romance. I loved that each chapter was a different point of view and not just of our two main protagonists. I also enjoyed all the interpersonal drama going on between each of the town residents. This was a sweet summer delight. Thanks to NetGalley and Penguin GROUP PUTNAM/ G. P. Putnam’s Sons for sharing this amazing digital reviewer copy with me in exchange for my honest thoughts.

Was this review helpful?

** Thank you to Netgalley and G.P. Putnam's Sons for the chance to read The Only Game in Town in exchange for my honest review. **

I love reading aloud to my kids for many reasons, not the least of which is that I get to read middle-grade novels. Sometimes, I feel like adult novels repeat the same plot lines again....and again....and again. Meanwhile, children's novels are often whimsical, creative, and exciting. One of my favorite read-alouds was Escape from Mr. Lemoncello's Library by Chris Grabenstein, which was essentially Willy Wonka meets a library. I loved reading about all the quirky gadgets that Mr. Lemoncello built. It was just plain fun.

I mention the Mr. Lemoncello series because Lacie Waldon's new book, The Only Game in Town, gives off serious Willy Wonka/Lemoncello vibes. In the book, the town of Redford is mourning the loss of their town benefactor, Jasper Wilhelm. Redford is the kind of small town where everyone knows everyone, and Jasper loved it with all of his heart. In fact, unbeknownst to the town, he and his grandson, Carter, had been anonymously donating money and scholarships to deserving town residents for years. Despite his constant invitations to visit, though, Jasper could never convince Carter to visit Redford himself.

Jasper was incredibly wealthy, and he used his vast resources to improve the town in many ways. It was no surprise that the entire town showed up to his funeral. Even Carter drove down from Atlanta in order to pay his respects. After the service, Jasper's lawyer and the executor of his will, Novak, stood in front of the crowd and announced that Jasper was going to leave a $10 million fortune to two town residents. He paired up the residents into teams and announced that there would be a series of competitions to determine who would inherit the money. Much to his surprise, Carter was among the participants. Once the teams were announced, however, the town residents quickly realized that Jasper had something up his sleeve. Each pair consisted of partners who did not get along. From Luanne and Sally, who ran competing baking businesses, to Retta & Louisa, whose fight over a boy in high school extended into adulthood, no one wanted to work with their assigned partner. However, Jasper made this a requirement for the game, so each resident was required to put up with his or her assigned partner or forfeit the money.

The day Carter arrived in town, he had the pleasure of meeting Jessica Reid, or Jess for short. Jess is vivacious and fun-- the kind of person who lights up any room she walks into. She was a gifted editor who turned down a flashy job in New York City in order to live in Redford. Now, she edits romance novels and occasionally wonders what her life would have been like if she had been editing best sellers instead. Carter meets her at a bar, where she is half-heartedly attempting to edit a novel, Then, her lifelong enemy, Nikki, walks into the bar. Jess thinks Nikki doesn't like her because Nikki believes she kissed her boyfriend in high school. In reality, Nikki is jealous of the relationship Jess has with her dad, Ross. The encounter ends with Nikki's friend, Lexi, dumping a daiquiri on Jess's keyboard, which prompts Carter to "save" her by leaving the bar with her. Carter, who is impeccably dressed but predictable and muted in his personality, finds himself agreeing to a tour of the town. As he starts to fall for the enigmatic Jess, he doesn't want to tell her that he and Jasper were behind the scholarship that put her through school.

As the game begins, Jess finds herself paired with Nikki, and Carter is paired with the friendly bartender, Bryce. As the competition goes on, Jess develops an important reason that drives her desire to win the money. With $10 million on the line, will the teams be able to work together to complete Jasper's cooky challenges? Or, will their differences tear Redford apart?

The Only Game in Town is a lighthearted read filled with adventure, crazy challenges, endearing characters, and a dose of terrible reality television. Jess's character is cute to the extreme, almost to the point where you could call her childlike. This bothered many other reviewers, but I liked it. You just have to go into this book realizing that it's like reading the script to a Hallmark movie. Even though The Only Game in Town is listed as a romance, I would consider it more of a contemporary fiction book with romantic elements. Jess and Carter's feelings toward one another grow throughout the book, but their relationship feels too juvenile to consider it a romance. Instead, it feels like a grown-up version of Mr. Lemoncello's library. Honestly, that's what endeared me to this book. I have been reading a lot of heavy books lately, and The Only Game in Town felt like a palate cleanser that left me feeling happy and optimistic. If you want to leave the serious books behind and read something that makes you feel good, it is a perfect selection. For that reason alone, I gave it four stars.

Was this review helpful?

It hurts me to say i did not like this! ugh, i have really enjoyed lacie's other books but this was all over the place. It really wasn't that focused on the romance, which i thought it would be. that's why i requested and went to read this one. but also, there were way too many POVs that werent needed and the story just felt all over the place. it started off really well and then just fell off.

Was this review helpful?

I HATE WRITING BAD REVIEWS. it hurts my heart really so bad :( and i wanted to love this book so badly so it hurts even worse :( but okay - let’s get into it.

at the beginning (aka reading the cover copy lol), i was so into this. the concept felt like it had the potential to bring the inheritance games vibes to a small town, hart of dixie type setting. which to me is an absolute DREAM.

but then something terrible happened and this book fell so short of its potential. first, this has way too many characters and even worse a few of these characters had (very unnecessary) pov chapters.

the romance was just not romancing. there was a lack of chemistry and also just a lack of real scenes between the two leads considering we were navigating through a bazillion plot points and other characters all the time. she was immature, he was a little boring. i wish i felt more sparks :(

and the villain was such a caricature it was hard to deal with and the main character is so slut-shamey towards her. justice for annoying blonde women we love you!!!

this was a hard one to get through speed wise and was so unbelievable in the plot i couldn’t really suspend my disbelief.

the writing itself had some potential so i won’t be writing this author off forever, but i can not (unfortunately!!!) recommend this one to you.

honestly 2 stars only feels right because i think this book will work for some people (people who are NOT me because I might have rated it lower)

Was this review helpful?

Do you love small town romance ..then this is for you. This story is set in a quirky small town that full is of some pretty color characters. I mean it starts out with Jasper whom is the towns secret fairy godfather who hatches a plan to have the whole town participate in a crazy scavenger hunt to win his inheritance after is passing. Jasper pairs all the towns people with some they have a issue with. This read was a welcomed escape from every day life each time that I picked it up. What can I say I'm also a sucker for dual pov and this one has it and then some. I wouldn't call this one a romance book more of a contemporary read.

Was this review helpful?

While it took me absolutely forever to get through this book, it was enjoyable and entertaining, but still left something to be desired.

The story, which revolves around Jess Reid and her small town of Redford, is highly unbelievable. I see the ultimate intent behind the story, but it's very very hard to believe that a dying old man would want his town's residents to have a pie eating contest and keep their hand on a wall to battle it out for 10 million dollars.

The ultimate goal of the story, to bring the town's residents together and help them get over differences and internal feuds, is a great foundation for a book, but I definitely think it could have been accomplished in other ways.

As I said, while I was reading it, I was entertained, but I found myself falling asleep every time I was reading, so it took me foooooooorever to get through the book. Maybe I'm too picky, or maybe it's just not for me, but this wasn't it.

Was this review helpful?

I adore Lacie Waldon. Her books are always quick, light, and adventurous. "The Only Game in Town" follows that trend. I found the characters lovable, the side characters interesting, and the plot entertaining.

I loved the competition between the characters of the town (I'm a sucker for competition). I love Jasper's final wishes and the tricks he has planned for the town once he's finally left this Earth. I couldn't help but laugh at the antics and appreciate the opportunity to fall in love with characters again.

Was this review helpful?

The Only Game in Town was a little off-beat, but it worked for me! I enjoyed the elements of friendship, the light romance, and the scavenger hunt game. A fun read!

Nothing ever changes in Redford, Georgia. That's what freelance editor Jess Reid loves about her hometown—and part of what keeps her from leaving. Content taking care of her father, a car mechanic who singlehandedly raised her after her mom skipped out, Jess is resigned to a safe, unremarkable existence...until Jasper Wilhelm, the town’s eccentric benefactor, dies suddenly and leaves behind the opportunity of a lifetime.

Financial advisor Carter Barclay has been too busy to visit his grandfather in Redford, but he’s heard countless stories about the town and its zany residents from Jasper. A small, insular town in Georgia is the last place Carter expects to be spending his summer—but it seems his grandfather had one final trick up his sleeve.

At the funeral, it’s revealed that Jasper has devised a massive, high-stakes game for the people of Redford, with the winning duo taking home his entire fortune. The catch? He’s already taken the liberty of pairing them up. As tensions of all kinds rise between Jess and Carter, and the life-changing prize looms closer, the two must decide what they’re willing to risk to change their lives. A love story full of spirit and hijinks, The Only Game in Town is a funny, quirky homage to the people we get to call home.

Was this review helpful?

Pick this one up if you're looking for Gilmore Girls esque quirky small town vibes and a sweet romance. The characters in this one were really wonderful, and even the "villains" get thoughtful development.

Was this review helpful?

I picked this up because I loved Lacie Waldon's release last year - it was so good - and I was hoping for another home run. Unfortunately this was a bit all over the place and did not have as much romance as I expected.

I read the first and second halves of the book a couple weeks apart and I'll admit I definitely felt the book more that second time. I've been reading a ton of small town romances lately, so I thought the premise sounded like a silly, yet grand time. The competition just never fully had me invested - I like how it ended and could easily tell what the town's unofficial mayor was trying to accomplish after his death, but it was a bit of a rough ride to get there. The mixed POVs from a variety of characters threw me off but grew on me by the end - especially as some of the characters grew throughout the game.

Overall I enjoyed the book, but wanted more romance and less random POVs from many characters. I continued to enjoy Lacie Waldon's writing and look forward to her next book.

Was this review helpful?