Member Reviews

Thank you to Montlake for a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

The file expired before I could finish reading. The first half of this novel (what I did read) was great. I will be picking up a copy and finishing it in the future. When I do, I will update my review here. Highly recommend for all the nerds out there! It was great to read a story about an older couple who loves video games and aren't perfect. I'm excited to see what happens in the latter half of the novel in the near future.

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4 stars mostly because I want to be Maggie when I grow up!

I dream of the day I can be confident enough to go toe to toe with old white racist homophobes at a wedding.

This was so cute and I loved the fact that the characters were older. While this wasn't a book that I could see myself in the characters, but as a story on its own, this was well done! If you are a gamer, or want to see a romance between two introverts that are doing everything in their power to not be social, this is the book for you!

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Unfortunately, after requesting this book, I realized that it wouldn’t be a good fit for me. That being said, I will not be able to read and review this book.

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I thought this would be a cute romcom, especially since my husband and I used to game together back in the day. Unfortunately, I just wasn’t the right audience for this one. There was plenty to like about the book, but I couldn’t connect to any of the characters and never felt any real chemistry between Maggie and Aiden.

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3.75⭐, 2🌶️

Having read and enjoyed the Ponto Beach Reunion Series, I was excited for this new book with having no ida what its about! I loved that this is a non-20's year old romance, with both our MC's in their 40-50's, and the fact they meet through video gaming was super sweet. At times Maggie is a bit too much for me, but overall, I liked both characters. Then as a couple, Maggie and Aiden were cute and mature, and I enjoyed this book, even though there was an obnoxious third act break up.

Thank you NetGalley and Montlake for an eARC of Role Playing, by Cathy Yardley. This is my honest, free review!

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DNF 9%.

I couldn't connect to either character at all and was struggling to stay focused on the book as nothing was drawing me in. I may try to come back to this but I really wasn't into it.

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just when i didn't think i could love cathy yardley more, she wrote this book. it was such a fun book. you just couldn't help but root for maddie & aiden. bogwitch & otter made me laugh out loud & swoon.

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This book is very different from the front cover. I was expecting like a romcom, but this is sort of along the lines of a gaming/older couple as they are in their 40s and I think although it says the characters are based on their 40s, it felt like they were younger like 30s with the way that they were thinking and processing and talking and I think there was a lot of real relationship growth between the main female character and her son. I also did like the way the relationship progress there wasn’t really a miscommunication trope which is amazing this book out things very clearly, and I think they kept their characteristics or definitely read more from this author in the future and I would highly recommend as this is absolutely an amazing book

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I was really excited for this book because it has so many things I look for, older characters, a cinnamon roll hero, and rep. Maggie and Aiden aren't looking to date, in fact, they are pretty much against it, but when they become friends in a gaming guild and just click, Maggie is happy realize that Aiden isn't the young twenty something she thought he was. Aiden doesn't feel comfortable around most people, he doesn't date but mostly he just isn't attracted to a lot of people so that makes it extra difficult. Maggie and Aiden grow as friends and when she starts to feel more, she isnt' sure if that will be reciprocated and so she pushes to stay friends.
Aiden doesn't realize that he has fallen for Maggie until he is in over his head and I love that about him. He knew he felt comfortable with her and just all around happy. It made me sad that he hasn't felt safe and happy before but with the array of side characters that were genuinely awful, I am not shocked.
I wanted to love this and there were parts I did love, but a lot of parts missed the mark for me. I felt like Maggie and Aiden acted much younger than their ages, which threw me off but I am also not a gamer and I am not sure if that had anything to do with it.
In the end, I am glad that Aiden stood up for himself after so many years and embraced all the things that brought him joy.
Thanks to Montlake, Cathy Yardley and Netgalley for an early copy.

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This was a decent slow burn romance, and it was nice representation of some middle aged characters for a change. I highly recommend for those who are online gaming lovers! My only draw back was the slow pacing.

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I love an over 40 romance, and I especially love over 40 characters who actually act like me! lol! This was a little slow to get going for me, but once it did, I absolutely adored it!

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i was so excited for a book about an older couple! while this had a lot of potential, it just fell flat for me. the characters felt immature and there was just too much going on with the story overall to really enjoy it fully.

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This book is so lovely and heartwarming.

I adore that this book's main characters are gamers in their late 40s and gamers. Games and anime are not solely enjoyed by teens, after all. The setup of this story is really nice, as we get to know Maggie and Aiden well before the romance. We sympathize more with their current situation and how they deal with their circumstances daily. The slow-burn of this book flows beautifully too, and the misunderstandings before our main characters finally meet in real life are amusing and adorable!

Another thing I love about this book is that it stresses that there's no age to achieving self-confidence and getting your life the way you envisioned it. So many external forces and internal struggles make or break us. It's so easy to say don't let others dictate your life when they are not in your shoes. Sometimes it takes more than just courage. Sometimes we need a little push from someone who understands and accepts us as we are. That's why I love the main characters. They are introverts that are kind-hearted by nature, broken down and picking up their pieces. They are so supportive of each other and talk about their grievances maturely and rationally.

I also like the ending - very realistic of their circumstances, especially Aiden's.

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This is a solid romance with a great general fiction story attached. I love the relationship with her son and the ending is just phenomenal. I’ve had this book for a few months and wish I would’ve brought it sooner I love a great book that leaves you with such an awesome feeling. I want to thank Mountlake publishing in NetGalley for my free arc copy please forgive any mistakes as I am blind and dictate my review.

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Thank you to Netgalley for providing an ARC in exchange for an honest review.

When I first saw the cover of Role Playing, I knew I had to read this book. I read a lot of romances where the main characters are young - anywhere from 18 to their early thirties - but to get a romance novel with middle aged characters? I was sold. Let's be real, I'm not a spring chicken anymore and my life has changed drastically since I graduated university, got married, had a baby - and I like that authors are still writing romance novels that reflect my life, my thoughts, and my feelings.

I loved Maggie and Aiden together. Their relationship felt real and getting to see a queer MMC featured was the icing on the cake, seriously. I wanted to throttle Aiden's family (IYKYK) but the way Maggie was with Aiden and their relationship just made everything better.

I'll definitely be picking up this author's next book! Here's hoping for more middle-aged characters!

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I loved Role Playing, not just because it was clearly written for me, but because it's a great story.
I met my partner of 16 years after we'd been in the same World of Warcraft guild for two years. I grew up in a really small, white, insular town where your family's mess just follows you forever. I'm bi like Aiden. And I'm a grump who sometimes gets a little too hermit-y for my own good like Maggie.
All that aside, Role Playing is great because Cathy Yardley gave her fully grown characters (45 and 50, IIRC) room to grow. Growth isn't limited to our youth! Both characters have rich lives and they complement each other so well. The way Maggie stands up for Aiden and teaches him to stand up for himself? Perfect.
It's swoony and funny and geeky and made me cry, so you should just go read it.

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Thanks to Montlake and Netgalley for this advanced copy!

What a wonderful, charming, delightful book! I adored Maggie and Aiden. I loved how these two took the friends to lovers path, using it for self-discovery as well as self-redemption, all while not changing who they are. Even as they wake up to their feelings, she still gets to be rough around the edges and he still gets to be his cinnamon role self and it's all fantastic.

I feel like some of the slow burn could have been a little faster, but really, who is complaining? Not me. This book felt like one of Maggies huge sweaters and whatever kind of hug I imagine Aiden giving. Just fantastic.

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4 stars!

I really enjoyed "Role Playing" by Cathy Yardley! I love the middle age representation in this book -- more of this in romantic fiction, I am begging you! I loved the main characters, Maggie (48) and Aiden (50). They are two super relatable, nerdy people who thrive separately and together in their mutual geekiness. They have both been burned in the past and are wary and guarded. Some may call them immature characters, but I disagree. Just because someone likes to play video games doesn't make them immature. Maggie is the kind of friend you want to have in your life. When some not-so-pleasant things happen to Aiden later in the book, Maggie stands up for him in a way that all allies should stand up for their friends. She gives no f**ks and doesn't care who she disappoints: if you hurt her friend, you have to deal with her. She's grumpy, sure, but it wholly fits her character. I love it when ladies get to be grumpy! And Aiden... sweet, cinnamon roll-y Aiden. My god, I'd do anything for him. I love how organically their friendship grows from online to in real life, and then when they become friends in real life, they eventually, slowly, become more. Swoony! It takes a while for the spice to start, but I think it's worth the wait. And speaking of online, this is a book where the miscommunications that occur online actually make sense and fit into the story. Aiden assumes Maggie is in her 80s, while Maggie thinks Aiden is in his 20s. Because they never discussed their ages online, when they meet in real life, it's a shock that they are so close in age. Sparks instantly fly, it just takes them a while to do something with them (which again, makes sense within the context of the story because Aiden is demisexual! Yay!). This story isn't all about healers and guilds and fractured feet and cooking international cuisine. It also contains some heavy discussions about empty nesting, bullying, demisexuality, homophobia/biphobia, outing, abuse, racism, and family trauma. There is A LOT going on in this story, so much so that I think it suffers a little from the load it has to carry. Yardley is trying to do a lot within a short amount of time, and I think some of the information is glossed over a bit as a result. My chief complaint about the book is that most of the side characters are downright awful, terrible people. Deb, Sheryl, Davy, all of them! Straight to the trash with you all! Also, Malcolm, Aiden's friend, what a misogynist a**hole! I have to assume all of these other characters are bad to make Aiden look even better, but I sure hated them! They constantly bring Maggie down by crapping on her looks and her clothes and how she chooses to live her life! Yardley does a good job writing these characters in despicable ways, but gosh, I hated them. And Aiden's mom? I know someone like this in real life! Can you imagine being as clueless and selfish and rude as that?! It's deeply disturbing that his mom goes out of her way to hurt her son when he wants nothing but the best for her. I am glad what happens at the end happens.

"Role Playing" is definitely worth reading! Check it out!

Thank you to NetGalley, Montlake, and Cathy Yardley for the complimentary ARC of this book. All opinions are my own. I was not compensated for this review.

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Thank you soooooo much netgalley, the author and the publisher for the advanced review copy if this book💗



Love it!!!

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This book was not for me, but I so badly wanted to love it. I enjoyed the authors writing style, the gaming references and also loved the romance between mature leads (something you don’t see often in romance). But for me I felt the book touched on too many topics and didn’t give each its own room to breathe.

I also didn’t feel the book cover went with the story. It might be a little misleading for anyone who might pick up the book by the cover only (I have a couple of friends who actually do that!).

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