by Laura Bradbury
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Pub Date 06 Mar 2023 | Archive Date 31 Jul 2023
A Harry-Styles-famous rock star takes refuge from crippling panic attacks at Oxford University, only to find himself face to face with the crush whose life he ruined.
Rock stars shouldn't suffer from debilitating panic attacks, but I'm barely hanging on by my famous fingernails. That's why I leverage the name I despise to study my childhood love of astronomy. Just one term at Oxford? Problem solved.
Too bad my pre-stardom life reappears to haunt me in the form of Lucy Snow, the sharp-tongued, opulent-bodied woman I can't seem to forget. This would be the perfect opportunity to make amends for stealing her fantasy four years ago, except Lucy's love for me has turned to loathing.
When she refuses my financial help, I have a wonderful, dangerous idea…
Jack Seary stole my dream of a singing career and made it his reality. When he trampled my heart, he also taught me a lesson: being selfless and hardworking makes me Cinderella without the goddamn glass slipper.
Now this infuriating thief of a man thinks I'll pretend to be his girlfriend to dispel tabloid rumors? Ha!
Oxford Star is an enemies-to-lovers, fake dating, second chance, celebrity / rock star romance with a plus sized heroine and panic / anxiety rep. Brace yourself for a SLOW-BURN (but steamy!) romance that explores the complexity of love, dreams, and redemption under the dreaming spires of Oxford University.
*** Please note that Oxford Star deals with the death of a parent in the past and anxiety / panic disorder.
A Note From the Publisher
Laura Bradbury is the author of Unlikely Match (A Transplant Romance), and Oxford Wild.
Available on NetGalley
Average rating from 319 members
Absolutely adorable romance. Love that the hero has anxiety and panic attacks that are portrayed realistically. Lucy was a very strong woman, and I love watching her let her guard down for Jack. The setting of Oxford was a great way for them to slowly get reacquainted, and eventually fall in love. Thanks to Netgalley for the free copy in exchange for an unbiased review.
I loved this book so much! This was such an interesting and unique take on a rockstar romance and honestly I have to say, I’m usually kind of on the fence with celebrity romances but this was so well done. i loved the anxiety representation and it felt so relatable and I felt so much for Jack and his struggle to feel happy and to also please other people and same with Lucy. Lucy’s journey with grief was well done and I just enjoyed this book so much. It’s such a sweet second chance, forced proximity & fake dating book. Laura is going to be on my list of top authors. Thank you to netgalley for this book.
I loved this book so much and it was so much fun to read I couldn't out it down and I love Lucy and Jack and how jack loved her for 4 years and how Lucy lost trust in him
Oh my God, this was amazing! I love rockstar romances, but I don't read them enough, so I was so excited for this one, and it delivered.
The tropes? Fantastic. It has so many, and usually when a book is trope filled like this, it isn't executed well; however, I think that Laura did a great job with it! The tropes are: enemies-to-lovers, slow burn, fake dating, second chance, rock star romance. It also has a plus sized heroine and panic/anxiety rep.
I think that Lucy and Jack went very well together as a couple. The chemistry was there, and the spice was great. I thought the characters were very realistic and relatable as well.
Overall, this book was very enjoyable, and I def recommend it!
“She was home. She was an irresistible dare. She was a crackling bonfire. We just fit. ‘My shooting star,’ I murmured,“
I was approved for an ARC for this just days before it came out so I wasn’t sure if I’d get to it, but having just finished it I am so glad I did - what a wonderful and delightful book.
Friends to betrayed and reluctant enemies to confidants to friends to fake dating partners to lovers? Add some lovely friends and wild twists? Sign me up.
This was such a sweet and delightful contemporary romance. It’s definitely one I will be recommending to anyone who is willing to listen, because I had such a good time reading it.
Please note - this is a sequel to Oxford Wild though it is not marked as one in a series. I wish I had known that because I did find myself confused wondering why it seemed like I was missing something with Cedar and Alfie, but I look forward to learning their story too.
My only critique of this book is no fault of the story itself - it just really could use a good edit. I believe it is self published? In which case I completely understand why it might still need some love. But there were a lot of typos and missed quotation marks that made me stumble through reading. It really do hope it can get the love it deserves to make it truly perfect.
Despite this, I loved this story. I recommend giving it a chance. Jack and Lucy have a lovely little spot in my heart.
Thank you NetGalley for this ARC!
Okay, so I love both of these MCs!! We have Lucy, curvy/plus size girl with singing pipes for days who goes to Oxford to get her law degree because it's more practical. We have Jack, her one who got away (but more like went away and broke her heart and trust) to be a rock star but is also at Oxford for a term to study his real academic love: astrology. I've been slowly figuring out that second chance romances are some of my faves because there's already history and chemistry for our MCs and there is often no 3rd act breakup. Loved this book, loved that Laura has first hand knowledge of Oxford (it shows), and love the music aspect. So thankful for this ARC!
There's a line where Lucy thinks to herself how easy her connection with Jack as always been: "There you are. Took you long enough to find me." SWOON!!
If you’re looking for a charming, cozy, modern romance book than look no further. I read the authors note and it confirmed what I suspected while reading, that she knows what it’s like to navigate the world as a size 16 and with panic. It’s the first time in awhile I haven’t cringed at a romance describing mental health and bigger bodies like they are just trends to be talked about.
I really enjoyed the characters, the ode to the east coast of Canada, and the warmth of the characters. The concept of stardom was wholesome and corny in the best way.
Thank you to NetGallery & Laura Bradbury and the publisher for the ARC of this charming story.
Thank you to NetGalley, the publisher, and Laura Bradbury for providing me with an ARC of this novel in exchange for an honest review.
I loved this book! As someone with anxiety/panic disorder I was really intrigued by the description. The story was enjoyable the whole way through and there were lots of unexpected twists.
I’ve been waiting for this one! So happy 2 have it finally approved. Will be sharing full thoughts and a review soon. Love the Harry Styles aspect and also how it address panic attacks which I find a lot of youn people my age are dealing with. Very excited for this one!
This book was perfect! Enemies to lovers, fake dating, famous and unknown. It was absolutely amazing. I would give this a 6 star review if I could.
I just reviewed Oxford Star by Laura Bradbury. #oxfordstarlaurabradbury #NetGalley
Great romance, be still my heart...
I am a huge fan of Laura Bradbury, starting with her "Grape" books and continuing with her more recent Winemaker's trilogy, Unlikely Match, and now the Oxford books. This has got to be one of her best. It's a wonderful romance with all the needed plot twists and turns to keep you turning the pages! Highly recommended (as are the rest of Ms Bradbury's books). What a pleasure to read during the dreary final days of winter!
Thank you to the publisher who lent me a time-constrained e-arc via Netgalley. This review is optional and my own opinion,
Oxford Star by Laura Bradbury
I received a digital copy of this book from NetGalley for review. My opinions are my own.
I LOVED this second-chance love story. Could not put it down. If I had the time, I would have finished it in one day. Alas, work called my name, and I begrudgingly finished it in a couple of days.
I loved this story of Lucy and Jack, where they reconnect at Oxford University after a four year hiatus. They had been very close in high school but circumstances had pulled them apart. Jack has since become a pop star while Lucy is a practical woman attempting to earn a law degree. This book chronicles how they end up back together.
Oxford Star had the perfect amount of smut without being overly done, in case sex isn’t your thing.
Loved this book.
Jack and Lucy are two unforgettable characters. Their story has depth, intricacies, and heart. I couldn’t put it down once I started reading! The depth was captivating and wasn’t as predictable as expected from a modern romance novel.
Thanks so much to Grape Books and Laura Bradbury for the ARC! Music, rockstars, and steamy romances always make for a good read. I couldn’t get enough of Jack and Lucy’s story! This was an easy quick read for myself and can’t wait to read more from Laura! This is definitely one I would recommend to everyone.
Than ks to Grape Books, Netgalley and the author for an ARC of this book. I am leaving this unbiased review voluntarily.
This was such a funny, touching and swoony book - I could not put it down. Once I started it in the morning then went to work I read during my breaks and lunch, after work and after dinner because I was enjoying it so much. And now I am sad to have finished and want to read everything by this author ever.
I don't want to give too much away about the plot but this is a second-chance romance. Jack has been in love with Lucy forever but then he kind of stole her dream and left to become a famous musician. Lucy never really forgave him but when they reunite in Oxford they begin to understand each other and Lucy sees herself as Jack as always seen her. I loved the other characters - they were absolutely enchanting. The romance element is the perfect blend between sweet and smoking hot.
I loved it. The end.
I loved the book. first, it talks about two themes that I love: music and astronomy. As an anxiety sufferer I think most books romanticize this subject but this book is very real in that regard so thanks to the author for being able to convey what it really is like to have anxiety. The chemistry between Jack and Lucy can easily be felt throughout the book, we're always waiting for one of them to give up trying to contain it. The description of Oxford is so real that it seems that we are in those corridors. The book is very well written and structured and the life lesson implied in it is for me one of the most important. Congratulations to the author for such a good book.
“Get a grip. If she woke up and caught me staring at her breasts, she was completely capable of kicking me in the nuts with those pointy leather boots of hers. What was wrong with me that I found her fierceness sexy?”
This book was absolutely great !!!! I am so I’m love both with the plot and the characters !!!!! Jack and Lucy’s romance was so addictive and wonderfully sweet. From friends to enemies to lovers, it made me feel so many goosebumps !!!! After being bandmates, he left and became a rock star. But know between forced proximity and fake relationship, old attraction will start sparkling again and Jack will try his best to prove Lucy how well they fit with each other !!!! This story was about dreams, love, fear and mental health. I loved how the author made the romance blossoming (or rather bursting into flames) between the main characters with their past, their dreams and their feelings and all the terrible suffering and pain from their past. While trying to take care of their families, Jack and Lucy will learn how to take care of themselves too. It was such a beautiful story !!! And SPICY !!!!! I’m so thankful I had the chance to read this book and I can’t wait to read more from this author !!!
“Even after four years of not seeing each other and living completely different lives, I was still the moth to her flame.”
“We each longed for the thing the other had.”
"I'm going to die if I can't kiss you right this instant."
*thank you netgalley for gifting me this arc in exchange for an honest review*
THIS BOOK IS INCREDIBLE! A LOVELY QUICK READ :)
This book contains childhood friends to enemies to lovers which I really enjoyed. One is a hardworking, independent, stressed out pre-law student and the other is an anxious, secretly nerdy, rich popstar. I loved seeing their dynamic together and the importance of mental health within this book---especially depicted in a male character.
A fluffy academic romance novel featuring a plus sized FMC! When I got approved for this galley and realized it was a sequel, I immediately borrowed and tore through the first book. This second one wasn’t quite as good but still was solid in my opinion. I also really appreciate how this author has characters grow through harder topics than the usual romance novel stuff-severe anxiety and parental alienation both feature strongly in this one. While everything does end up in a HEA, they at least have to work for it.
OH MY HEART! THIS BOOK!!!
Jack, A Pop Star with crippling anxiety and dreams of a quiet academic life studying the stars.
Lucy, A girl just trying to grasp for a way to get a better career to make a better life for her family.
Oh, and they totally have history!
These two unexpectedly run into each other again in the most surprising way, and life keeps throwing them together when all Lucy wants to do is RUN far away from Jack.
This book filled my heart to the brim. I loved these two so much. They had a lot to work through and overcome, but they did it! My favorite was how very much they talked and communicated with each other. By the end of this book they knew each other so well and it was so heartwarming to see them live out their HEA. Such a satisfying ending!!!
And the location setting for this book could not be more GORGEOUS! I love how Laura describes these real beautiful locations in Oxford to us as readers. I also love how Laura pours her own life experiences into her stories, it brings so much more depth to the story.
Highly Recommend! This book is so fun and so heart felt at the same time! Don't sleep on Jack and Lucy!
I love Laura Bradbury’s writing, so when I saw this on NetGalley, I requested it as fast as humanly possible. Rockstar romances are always a bit of fun, and this is one with a twist. Enemies to lovers, fake dating, celebrity tropes are just a smattering of what you can expect. And add in a bit of a thrilling twist at the end? I couldn’t put it down!
Jack is a rockstar. Too bad his anxiety can’t get with the program. His panic attacks have gotten bad enough his band had to cancel a couple of shows, and now he is taking a break to try and get them under control. Lucy stepped into the role of caregiver when she was young, and she was accepted into Oxford’s accelerated law program. She figured this was the quickest path to financial stability for her family after her dad passed. Unfortunately nothing seems to be going right for her, including sitting next to the man who betrayed her 4 years ago for the the flight to England. Things have to get better from here, right?
Chef's kiss!! To start Jack. I just wanted to hug him. He's being used by his parents and manager all while trying to manage anxiety that is bordering on crippling. Him going to Oxford to go back to himself and what he loves, I just cheered him on the entire time. His passion was not the music, but the stars. I felt nervous when he and Lucy reunited for the first time. He clung to her wanting his friend back, but also having that peace he once had. I loved that he tried even though Lucy pushed him away. The high point of their relationship that warmed my heart was Jack being vulnerable with Lucy at his show. That to me was the real kick off of their relationship.
Lucy. Oh sweet Lucy. I saw myself in her. A child having to be an adult because the actual adult can't manage it. Lucy having to take care of her mom and sister broke my heart all based on a promise. Lucy going to Oxford to study law when it wasn't her passion really felt like real life. It made me question how many times did I not pursue my passion because I was trying to be the adult for someone who was capable.
The banter between Jack and Lucy was perfect. They balanced each other out and that is what I love in a book. Their ability to be raw and real with each other and get back to the base of who they are individually and together.
Oxford Star reunites Lucy and Jack, who had met when Lucy placed a Craigslist ad for a backup singer/guitarist for her audition for Canada's Got Talent, which was her dream to sing professionally and it would help her care for her mother and sister after her father died. She never auditioned for the show since Jack signed with a band and was contractually unable to play with her. As an answer to her still struggling family, Lucy makes it into Oxford, where she can earn a law degree in two years instead of the normal three. Jack, who has always been a space nerd, has been having sever panic attacks and manages to convince his manager and parents (who are actually the ones who dreamed of a rock star life for him) to let him study astrology - at Oxford.
I just adored this book. Lucy and Jack were both such good characters and I really loved the way they interacted with each other (even when Lucy was mad at him). This was very much a feel good book that could be quickly devoured on a vacation. There was a twist near the end that I normally wouldn't like because of its randomness, but other parts of the story made it more believable.
I loved this book so much. It is an enemies-to-lovers, fake dating, second chance, rock star romance with plus sized representations and a story that is entwined with a character who suffers from panic/anxiety episodes. I felt for Jake and his struggles and Lucy, her character developed so much through this book as she went from taking care of others too chasing her dreams, all whilst falling in love.
This book was a lovely and on easy read that I could not put down with just the right amount of spice, nothing was overdone here.
Thank you to NetGalley, Laura Bradbury and the publisher for allowing me to read this ARC in exchange for my honest review.
What an absolute gem of a book. If you are looking for something fun and simple oozing with fun banter and romance, look no further. I had no idea this was the second book in the Romancing Oxford series and now have put the first book on my TBR. You don't have to read them in order but the couple in the first series is in this second book so it's a bit of a spoiler (although with most romances, you know they get together in the end).
I truly enjoyed reading this book and devoured it in less than 24 hours. It was an easy read but by no means was the writing juvenile. You'll love this book if you like:
- witty banter
- fake relationship
- enemies(ish) to lovers
- grumpy female/sunshine male
- body positivity
- anxiety/mental health representation
- guy falls first
I loved how the relationship between Lucy and Jack developed. Unlike a lot of romance novels, the love didn't feel forced or sped up. Lucy's need to "be the parent" in her family got a tad annoying sometimes but I understood where it was coming from. Jack's whole character arc was wonderful to watch unfold though. Some of my favorite lines were from him:
"Waking up with an opulent five=foot-three inches of blue eyes, blunt words, and layers of defenses felt like the best ever dream."
"Gary said, 'She's besotted with you." 'It's mutual," I said, smug."
It was just all warm fuzzies and exactly what I needed to escape for a little while.
Laura Bradbury’s Oxford Star is a blast to read. I loved the whole cast of characters— especially Lucy and Jack.
Lucy and Jack are from Newfoundland and knew each other there. Jack was supposed to play guitar and be a backup singer for Lucy as she auditioned for Canada’s Got Talent. However, he signs a contract to be in a boy band 30 minutes before that audition and totally bails on Lucy.
Lucy holds a grudge as Jack rockets to fame. Four years later, she decides to study law at Oxford and bumps into Jack on the plane. Will she forgive him?
Jack suffers anxiety and panic attacks and decides to study at Oxford for a term to escape the limelight, in the hopes that stepping back will alleviate his anxiety.
The book had me laughing and crying… Trigger warning for death of a parent.
Having visited Oxford, the descriptions of the town and colleges made me feel like I was back there. A fun escape!
Thank you to the author, Grape Books, and NetGalley for the eARC in exchange for my opinion.
Aww!! This was so adorable and heartwarming. I was not expecting to like this as much as I did. Laura Bradbury is definitely now on my radar as someone to watch! You will love accompanying these characters as they fall in love and face fame together!
Oxford Star: when an A list rockstar goes on hiatus to Oxford, he doesn’t expect to reconnect with his first love - the woman he last saw on the night his life changed forever. Told from dual POVs this is a must-read if you love the celeb-normie plotline. This book is a delightful surprise!!
CW: panic attacks, anxiety, death of parent off-page
A absolute wonderful feel good romantic comedy that anyone who is a fan of the genre will fall in love with