Title: On the Corner of Love and Hate
Author: Nina Bocci
Publisher: Gallery Books
Publish Date: August 20, 2019
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Series: Hopeless Romantics #1
Goodreads Ratings: Me 3.0 / Community 3.61
For fans of Lauren Layne and Kristan Higgins comes a delightfully “fun bit of fluffy entertainment” (Publishers Weekly) in the first book of a charming new series, in which a young woman is forced to help her old friend revamp his image for the upcoming mayoral elections…and discovers that she might not be as immune to his charms as she once thought.
When Emmanuelle Peroni’s father—and current mayor of Hope Lake, Pennsylvania—suggests she help with Cooper Endicott’s campaign, she’s horrified. Cooper, one of her (former) oldest friends, drives her crazy in every way possible. But he’s also her father’s protégé, so Emma reluctantly launches her plan to help him win the local election.
It’s not as easy as it looks. Cooper’s colorful love life is the sticking point for many voters, and his opponent is digging up everything he can from his past. It seems that every time Emma puts out the flames from one scandal, another one flares up. Emma knows that if Cooper wants to win, he needs to keep his nose clean. The only problem? She might just be falling in love with the one person she promised never to pursue: the mayoral candidate himself.
Emmanuelle (Emma) and Cooper were friends growing up, but their friendship mostly ended during their college years. After college, they both returned to their hometown of Hope Lake. Now, they both work for the community development office. Emma once wanted more than friendship from Cooper, but that desire ended and their friendship never recovered.
A frenemies to lovers story. Emma is a workaholic who loves to be organized and in control. She is single and occasionally dates, but she keeps her schedule so full, there is rarely time. Cooper is a womanizing rich boy with political aspirations. Since the story is told from Emma’s point of view, the reader is aware of her feelings for Cooper. It would have been nice to have some parts from Cooper’s POV, because he seemed to show no interest in Emma.
I enjoyed the small, picturesque town of Hope Lake. The activities around the town play a part in the story since Emma and Cooper work for the town, and Cooper is running for mayor in the upcoming election. Lots of politics about the town in this book. In addition to Cooper’s political aspirations, Emma’s father is the current mayor and Cooper’s mother is the governor. Emma’s father supports Cooper and encourages Emma to be Cooper’s campaign manager. Emma begrudgingly agrees to be Cooper’s campaign manager, and she has her work cut out for her. Cooper agrees to her conditions to run the campaign, but he occasionally seems clueless about how politics and public image works. This is unbelievable since his mother is a career politician.
The writing style was enjoyable and I liked the atmosphere in the town of Hope Lake. Some of the secondary characters were great, and I hope to read more about them in the next book of the series. That said, this novel did have several things that didn’t work for me. Emma and Cooper weren’t that likable. I could handle Emma’s wishy-washy behavior, but Cooper truly was not a good choice for love interest. Also, this was much too slow on the romance for me. In the end, I was a little disappointed in this one, but will continue to read the next book and look forward to hearing more from the characters in Hope Lake.
I received a free digital copy of this book from the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.
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