Ok so the plot of Rachel Lynn Solomon’s The Ex Talk is pretty different from the movie While You Were Sleeping. But also I was reminded of that goodness because:
✅enemies to lovers
✅ heroine is tied so strongly to memories of her father
✅ heroine’s life is in a state of suspension
✅ the approachability of the narration. Remember how good Sandra Bullock’s voiceover is? It’s so home-y.
✅ deception plot
The Ex Talk gave me some good feelings.
Shay Goldstein grew up loving public radio & when her boss gives her the chance to be a host she jumps on it even though she’ll be required to (1) host with her enemy, Dominic Yun & (2) lie to viewers that she & Dominic dated briefly.
Their program The Ex Talk is largely about relationships that have ended & she & Dominic will use their fake dating turned fake break-up as part of the show’s premise.
Dominic is more reluctant to do the show but caves in the end.
What could possibly go wrong? Especially when the two start realizing that the other isn’t so bad after all.
I love how straight-up of a beta hero Dominic is. How they’re both imperfect; he’s occasionally annoying & she’s realistically at times self-absorbed & not always sugar sweet. The steam. The deep convos—I felt like this couple really got to know each other. The age gap—Shay’s the oldest. How many times he says the wrong thing & then apologizes. The meditations on grief & Shay’s moving conclusions about it.
But I’ve gotta say, the overall deception plot bothered me. Probably because I’m wary about those in general; probably because there’s so much lying in & related to US politics right now that I’m a little sick of it tbh. But also, I just really don’t want people associated with the news to lie—even though Dominic & Shay’s show was more of a human interest-related show it seems to cross some not-so-small ethical lines for me.
The Ex Talk is fun, it’s sensitive, it’s authentic. It wrestles with grief & honesty & loneliness & also portrays petty fights over the best sound booth. ALL THINGS CONSIDERED it is a breath of FRESH AIR (get it?!).
4.5 ⭐️. (Might be a little high--I waffled a little--but I’m feeling what I’m feeling this morning.) The Ex Talk releases on 01/26/21. Thanks to the author for my free copy which I won in a giveaway. All opinions provided my own.
Give me that HEA, please.
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