4 BABY BLUE STARS! ★★★★
It all started with a pinky swear…
Linden McGregor is tall, rugged, and gunslinger handsome; a helicopter pilot with a Scottish brogue and charm to spare. He’s also one of Stephanie Robson’s best friends and has fit into that box for as long as she’s known him.
Beautiful, funny and an ambitious businesswoman (with one hell of an ass), Stephanie Robson is one of Linden McGregor’s best friends and has fit into that box for as long as he’s known her.
But some relationships can’t be boxed, can’t be classified, can’t be tamed.
Back in their mid-twenties and tired of the competitive hit-or-miss dating scene of San Francisco, Steph and Linden made a pact to marry each other if neither one of them are in a serious relationship by the time they hit thirty.
It sounds like fun and games but as the years to thirty tick past and lovers come and go out of their lives, the pact becomes larger than life.
Sex is inevitable. Friendships are tested. Hearts are on the line.
The pact is about to change everything.
The pact is about to change everything.
"Nine years. I've been waiting nine years for this. Nine years to finally have you the way I've always needed you."
When I think of Karina Halle, her EiT series easily comes to my mind and I get the instant chills recalling how I nearly peed my pants reading On Demon Wings, no doubt bringing out the grit and the horror. But with The Pact that comes in a form of a fun and sexy read with a dose of angst, Karina Halle proves that she can move out from her comfort zone and still deliver.
A friends-to-lovers story and how it all begins with a pinky swear, we follow the lives of Stephanie and Linden, best friends who made a pact in their mid-twenties when their love lives seemed to be going nowhere. A pact where if none of they were committed by the age of 30, they would get married to each other. But is the pact really just words or from the heart?
"I wanted Steph. My best friend. She was my baby blue and I was her cowboy. So a pact, a foolish, naive pact, was born."
With the story pacing onwards with glimpses over the years from both POVs till the big 3-0, we got to see the different people coming in and out of their love lives, a life among their mutual friends and making important life choices. But only one thing is constant and that is their ever-loving support for each other.
And when 30 rolls around, an act of dare set the wheels into motion for both of them to finally admit that something deeper runs within their strong bond, causing them to re-evaluate their current stand.
“That was real. That was something. Tell me you felt something, that you felt what I felt.”
Walking on the fine line of best friends, I truly enjoyed seeing the interaction and witty banters between Steph and Linden. Nothing felt too rushed and you can see how their friendship slowly morphed into something more each time; the sexual glances, the accidental touches. It didn't bother me too much that they dated/slept with other people over the years because I felt it was a realistic move in terms of figuring out their lives & gave them the needed catalyst at times. When it comes to this prose, it's always a little tricky when you want to see that their connection is just more than sex. And with this read, I got to see how their relationship grew organically and how they deeply cared for each other as friends.
"Every day, every year, feels like an evolution to the person she is now, the woman sitting beside me, especially when you scroll back to where we all started."
Both MCs were wonderful characters and would fit the bill for my wannabe bffs; sassy, sexy and fun. And my dear ladies, when it comes to Karina Halle, you can definitely count on her to bring on some of the best men in your reads! Yup there's Linden, the Scotsman who will melt your panties with his dirty talking and oh-so yummy!
"I want to tell her all the filthy things I think about, be real, raw and unfiltered. I want to make her cheeks flush from my dirty mouth and her body squirm with desire."
There were many moments in this book that sent my emotions on a tailspin; I laughed, I swooned, I got mad, I teared a little. Also expect moments that would make you want to throw people off a cliff too because boy, was I royally pissed there for a while! I love you Linden, but for a good while there you struck a nerve within me
How could you choose James over Steph?! REALLY?! And them keeping their rship as a secret from James baffled me for a while there. James is an adult for Christ's sake, I'm sure he'll live with it. And for that I decked out 1 star. At this point, I really adored Steph and how she stood up to him. To have a read that sends your heart soaring in joy to later being maddened by these characters, this read nailed on delivering the all round emotions.
If you're looking for a fun and sexy light-hearted read that comes with a side of good angst and topped off with some smokin' steamy (and I mention again, dirty-talking) scenes; look no further with The Pact. It offers a great balance between the fun times and the needed angst that will keep you entertained as well as your heart racing. It's not just a romance read you'll get but also a taste of delving into some real-life issues that most of us can relate to.
And so with this, Karina Halle can surely add diversity to her list of expertise, AYE!
The Pact is a standalone contemporary adult romance read.