Author: Alix Bekins
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Cover Artist: Anne Cain
Rating: 4 of 5 Stars
Bailey McMillan’s life is a mess. The general public blames him for his former employer’s nuclear pollution, resulting in professional disgrace. Humiliated, he takes a job as an editor at a science magazine run by his best friend, John. That part isn’t so bad; Bailey is fond of John, who seems to find Bailey’s abrasive nature amusing.
Unfortunately, working for John also leads to writing an astrology column in exchange for getting free rein in some op-ed articles—and then being sued over one. The (totally coincidental) accuracy of the column offers opportunity for further professional disgrace if anyone discovers its author—and then Bailey digs himself a little deeper.
In an attempt to prove astrology is bogus, he agrees to an experiment to date someone from each star sign. As if that wasn’t bad enough, Bailey’s got a stupid crush on John, who stubbornly insists on a detailed breakdown of every date—bad and otherwise. Bailey’s luck has to improve sometime… right?
What is it about series of bad dates that makes for fun reading? Written in the Stars by Alix Bekins is precisely such a story. Though the ending is pretty obvious from the outset, the journey is entertaining enough to keep my attention. It it’s core, Stars is a slow burn friends-to-lovers tale told in the third person exclusively from Bailey’s perspective.
Bailey is an interesting character, kind of a Sheldon-esque physics genius with a few more social graces. He is brash. He is arrogant. He is opinionated. He is working well below his capabilities thanks to a few hits his reputation in the physics world has taken. He is working for his best friend, John as a fact checker and astrological columnist, much to his chagrin. When he tries to apply the scientific method to his dating life, in the form of a challenge to date one man from each of the twelve astrological signs, the results are a combination of entertaining, sad, pathetic, and downright hilarious.
Through the journey, we see just how oblivious Bailey is. We also see how desperate he is for love, even if he doesn’t know of or acknowledge the need. We watch John get increasingly uncomfortable with Bailey’s supposed love life. All while Bailey is happily blind to his friend’s tensions.
My one complaint about this story centers on a subplot. I do not understand the inclusion of the lawsuit. It was a subplot that didn’t add much to the story for me. Everything it showed us about Bailey we already knew from other parts of the story. I feel it could have been left out without damaging the main story in any way.
Overall Stars is an enjoyable and light diversionary read. I will happily pick up more stories from Bekins in the future.
This review is based on a copy purchased by the reviewer independent of any review copies offered.
I have a number of paperbacks, most of which are signed, to giveaway. Over the between now (11 Mar 2017) and 31 Mar 2017, every comment on the blog (this post and all other new posts), will be entered to win 1 of these paperbacks. There are also some misc swag items, so there will be a few packs of these to give away as well.
Thank you so much for your support over the last 4 years. Prism will be closing its doors on 1 April 2017. All content will remain available, but no new content will appear after 31 Mar 2017. As such all request forms have been turned off. Again Thank you,
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