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Any Way the Wind Blows by Rainbow Rowell
Available Dark by Elizabeth Hand
Blackmail and Bibingka by Mia P. Manansala and Danice Cabanela (Narrator)
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A Conspiracy in Belgravia by Sherry Thomas and Kate Reading (Narrator)
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A Design to Die For by Kathleen Bridge and Vanessa Daniels (Narrator)
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Fly Me to the Moon, Volume 2 by Kenjiro Hata
The Game is a Footnote by Vicki Delany
High Spirits by Carol J. Perry and C.S.E. Cooney (Narrator)
Into the Windwracked Wilds by A. Deborah Baker
Komi Can't Communicate, Volume 3 by Tomohito Oda
Kowloon Generic Romance, Volume 2 by Jun Mayuzuki and Amanda Haley (Translation)
Lore Olympus, Volume Two by Rachel Smythe
Lost Places by Sarah Pinsker
Monkey Prince by Gene Luen Yang and Bernard Chang (Illustrator)
The Neapolitan Sisters by Margo Candela
Nightmare of the Iguana by Ursula Vernon
No Judgments by Meg Cabot
Seven-Year Witch by Angela M. Sanders
6 Times We Almost Kissed by Tess Sharpe
Soul of a Killer by Abby Collette and L. Malaika Cooper (Narrator)
Steeped to Death by Gretchen Rue and Kristin Price (Narrator)
A Tale of Two Princes by Eric Geron
Vampiric Vacation by Kiersten White
Wined and Died in New Orleans by Ellen Byron and Amy Melissa Bentley (Narrator)

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6 Times We Almost Kissed: 02/18/23

6 Times We Almost Kissed

6 Times We Almost Kissed by Tess Sharpe is an enemies to lovers tale. Penny and Tate aren't exactly friends but their mothers are best friends. When Penny's mother offers to donate part of her liver to Tate's mother and the two families end up living together for the duration, the girls vow to play nice for their mothers' sake. What they don't expect is to fall in love even if everyone else sees the romantic tension between the two.

This YA romance comes close to the "not related by blood" incest trope that shows up in a number of anime series. Despite the blurb, I wasn't expecting it here. For the most part it's not, as there's very little in the way of romance or even friendship.

Instead the novel is mostly melodrama. There's Penny's grief over her father's death. There are lengthy flashbacks over how he died and how Penny couldn't save him. There's Tate having to sell her truck and take over the household finances because of her mother's illness. Then of course, there's the operation and all those logistics.

Beyond the unending trauma porn, there's the lack of unique voice for each of the characters. Honestly most of the time I couldn't tell the girls apart or remember which girl went with which mother. There's so much dialog with little in the way of characterization that I didn't have anything to hold on to.

Two stars

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