Hollywood Endings (Hollywood Romance, #1). ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Hollywood Endings by Liza Malloy

My rating: 5 of 5 stars.

Is happy-ever-after only in the movies?

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When Courtney Robbins moves to California, she isn’t looking for love, fame, or fortune. She’s focused on earning her law degree and advocating for victims of domestic violence. After a chance encounter with actor Justin Erikson, Courtney decides to spice up her life with a steamy fling. The chemistry between them is undeniable, but Courtney quickly learns there is more to Justin than his perfectly chiseled body, piercing blue eyes and adorable dimples. He’s sensitive, thoughtful, and generous. Still, Courtney is hesitant to ponder a future with a Hollywood heartthrob.

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As Courtney graduates law school and begins her dream job, Justin’s career thrives. But as the passion between Justin and Courtney intensifies, Justin struggles to shelter Courtney from the paparazzi and is haunted by his own reputation as a womanizer. Just when Courtney starts to think that she can have it all-an idyllic romance and the perfect job-a tabloid rumor threatens both Courtney and Justin’s careers. As their two worlds continue to clash, they must decide what price they are willing to pay to stay together.

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Hollywood Endings

Lifelike story of normal girl dating a celebrity.

At first I didn’t think I liked this story of a girl in law school who meets a movie star. It seemed a bit too real. However, the more I read, the better I liked it. As much as I love romance novels and the overly romanticized version of life they generally represent, it is sometimes refreshing to read one that is more realistic in nature. This was a terrific example of that and it did have a happy ending.

The romance novel would have the heroine as someone who doesn’t watch movies and has no idea who the movie star Hero is. He would be enchanted by the nice change of pace from what he usually gets where women are only after him because he is rich and famous. So he very quickly falls in love with her and after some steamy scenes and some sort of conflict, she falls in love with him and they live happily ever after.

This book didn’t follow that format and that is why it stands out to me. The heroine, Courtney is a law student at Berkeley and she is in Los Angeles with friends on vacation before getting back to school. Courtney and her friends won passes to get in to a nightclub where celebrities hang out and she sees Justin Erickson at the club. He is a hot up and coming actor who has been in a very popular series of movies and he is also a famous underwear model with billboard and magazine ads all over the place.

When Courtney first goes up to speak with Justin she is surprised how nice he is and he asks her to sit with him. He seems interested and ends up wanting to take her home. However the parts I like the best are how he sort of tunes her out somewhat when she is talking about law school and how when he waits for her to tell her friends she is leaving, he looks like he might just leave without her because he is waiting longer than expected.

Courtney and Justin have a very non-traditional romance. Though Courtney really likes Justin, neither of them have time to be in a relationship. She is very busy trying to do well in Law School and he is out of the country a lot while filming and doing press junkets. Justin definitely likes to play the field and doesn’t want Courtney to get the wrong idea after he asks her over a few times. But Courtney lets him know she doesn’t have time for a relationship either, so they can just have fun without any expectations.

Justin sees his ex-girlfriend, a popular actress who cheated on him very soon after he starts seeing Courtney. The ex, Kinzie is. in a relationship with the guy she cheated on Justin with, but Justin thinks its funny that she is now cheating on that guy with him. I liked the realism here that he is not totally devoted to Courtney right away. Because in real life we know that celebrities sometimes do end up with normal people, but I can totally see a relationship between a regular girl and an hollywood hunk being like this.

The book details the way Justin and Courtney’s relationship builds over time and how things get in the way, like the paparazzi, stories in the press about him and a bunch of women, his ex-girlfriend, and distance. I just really liked the way the story progressed and I read it straight through. The character development and world building was fantastic. The romance was steamy but not overly graphic in details. Overall I liked the originality in a pretty standard romance trope. I give it 4.75 stars, rounded up to 5.

I voluntarily read & reviewed an advanced copy of this book. All thoughts & opinions are my own.

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