Published by Createspace Independent Pub on October 13, 2016
Genres: New Adult, Romantic Comedy, contemporary, Romance
Source: eARC from Author
Joel Anderson doesn’t take anything seriously.
Not his relationships, which have been few and far between since his brutal divorce. Not the drama of working in a tattoo parlor, which seems to be around every corner. When things get him down, he smiles and cracks a joke. But he’s not the kind of man you cross, or you’ll find yourself at the wrong end of his fists.
Annika Belousov takes everything seriously.
Like her job as a reality television producer, given that she typically has something to prove. Or her love life, which is defined by a series of requirements — affluent, ambitious, accomplished, to name a few. Definitely her family, who worked their whole lives to afford her every opportunity, a sacrifice she doesn’t take lightly. When she’s tapped to produce a reality show at Joel’s shop, she doesn’t think twice, just goes in for the kill, as if there were any other way.
The second Annika walks into Joel’s shop, he makes it his mission to crack her open, but she’s not having it. He’s all wrong — too crass, too hairy, too un-serious. But it doesn’t take her long to find out there’s more to him than smirks and tattoos. And what she finds could put her career and his heart on the line.
Not that Joel cares. Because for the first time in a long time, he’s found his tonic.
Tonic is a new adult romantic comedy by Staci Hart. I would put this one more in the vein of a contemporary romance because it takes some time for the comedy part of the romantic comedy to gear up. But either way, I loved Tonic. I was in the mood for a really great romance and it totally hit the spot. I have been wanting to read another Staci Hart book for a while now, because I knew that I would really enjoy it and I was right. She is right up there with Penny Reid and Meg Cabot as my romance go to authors.
I loved the perspective that Tonic took. I am a reality tv show junky and Tonic is about a tattoo shop that is getting it’s own reality show. But the story itself is told in dual narrative between Annika and Joel. Joel is the shop owner and Annika is a tv show producer. That is the interesting perspective I am talking about. I think it was a spot on portrayal of the way reality TV works. I loved seeing the producers talk about moving and manipulating the characters to create an atmosphere for drama. Watching them plan out the episodes of the season was super fascinating to me. I have no idea how accurate this is or isn’t but it felt pretty accurate to me.
Of course, the reality show, even though it s front and center plot wise, felt secondary to the character development and relationship blossoming between Annika and Joel. I just loved the dichotomy between the two of them. With Annika’s ice queen exterior and Joel’s dogged determination they were a fiery pair. I think you all know by now that I am a sucker for some URST bickering, and these two had that in spades. But Joel really steps up when he needs to. he is caring and kind and his focus is sexy. I loved him. I really liked Annika too but I don’t know how anyone can compete with Joel. (can you tell I have major goo goo eyes for him.) There is just something good about him.
Bottom line: Whether you are more of a Romantic Comedy fan or more of a dramatic contemporary romance fan, Tonic will be a great book for you. Read it even if you can’t stand reality TV. Trust me. Joel and Annika will win you over. They won me over right from the very start. Their fire and ice dynamic made for a read that I could not put down and I did not want to end. Staci Hart is quickly becoming an Auto-buy author for me. I love her romances.Happy release day to Tonic by Staci Hart @imaquirkybird ! Check out @BookBriefs ARC #Review #RomCom Click To Tweet