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Review: Blind Kiss by Renee Carlino

August 14, 2018

From the national bestselling author of Before We Were Strangers, Swear on this Life, and Wish You Were Here comes a powerful story of two people who spend years denying their scientifically proven chemistry.


Penny spends her afternoons sitting outside a sandwich shop, surrounded by ghosts. Fourteen years ago, this shop was her childhood dance studio—and she was a dancer on the rise. Now she’s a suburban housewife, dreading the moment her son departs for MIT, leaving her with an impeccably decorated McMansion and a failing marriage. She had her chance at wild, stars-in-her-eyes happiness, but that was a lifetime ago. After The Kiss. Before The Decision.


The Kiss was soulful. Magical. Earth-shattering. And it was all for a free gift card. Asked to participate in a psych study that posed the question, “Can you have sexual chemistry without knowing what the other person looks like?” Penny agreed to be blindfolded, make polite conversation with a total stranger, and kiss him. She never expected The Kiss to change her life forever and introduce her to Gavin: tattooed, gorgeous, and spontaneous enough to ask her out seconds after the blindfolds came off.


For a year, they danced between friendship and romance—until Penny made The Decision that forced them to settle for friendship. Now, fourteen years later, both of their lives are about to radically change—and it’s his turn to decide what will become of their once-in-a-lifetime connection.


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*** 3 Star Review ***


I have struggled with what to say about this book. I enjoyed it, but at the same time I kind of didn't enjoy it. It had some really great parts. 


The premise of this book is great. I really loved the idea of the blind kiss and its profoundness. However, I wasn't a fan of how everything played out afterward.


This isn't a second chance romance. I would call it a million missed opportunities romance, to the point I was getting bored with the push and pull after a while.


I think my discord with this book had a lot to do with the characters. I just wasn't invested in Penny or Gavin. Their character development wasn't very strong. I couldn't really feel their connection. Maybe it was because this book was more dialogue driven. A lot of times getting to know characters and feeling chemistry falls in the inner monologue of the story, which was minimal in this one.


This book didn't feel like a Carlino book. If anything, it felt like a CoHo book. Now, I am not saying that in a negative way. I am just saying the slow burn and how the book was written felt more like CoHo's writing on some level. I love both authors. They are great with words and stories. 


Overall, this isn't a bad book. It is pretty good. It definitely isn't one of my favorites of Carlino's, that is for sure. I can see many loving it. I am just hanging out in the middle. I liked it, but I didn't love it.

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