Ryan Christensen just wanted to be an actor. Never in his wildest dreams did he ever think that accepting a role in an unknown film would toss his career into overdrive. His new fame has cost him dearly; anonymity is no longer an option. His fans stalk him, the paparazzi hound him, and Hollywood studios all want a piece of him. Despite all of that, Ryan Christensen craves the most basic of human needs - to have love in his heart and privacy in his life.
Taryn Mitchell, the story's protagonist, is a realist. She's been feigning contentment, running the family pub in Seaport, Rhode Island, while quietly nursing her own internal heartaches. Her feet are fairly glued to the ground and she doesn't buy into all the hype that has descended on her tiny, coastal town. In her world, men are safe if they're kept at a distance.
Fate has other plans for these two when their paths cross one sunny afternoon. A group of female fans has attacked him, leaving his shirt torn, his face cut, and Ryan in obvious distress. Bonds between them form from the most dramatic of circumstances while jealousy, insecurity, and the stress of his celebrity life try to tear them apart.
Through all the tabloid lies, secrecy, and pressure, can Taryn's peace and Ryan's high-profile insanity live together in harmony?
Copy received from publishers, Simon & Schuster, via NetGalley
This book was brought to my attention by a friend. She was loving it and found that there was a second installment, 'Love Unrehearsed'. She urged me to try it. We agree on books approximately 95% of the time, so I said I would; with time. Tina Reber was originally a self-published author. How strange that not a few days later, my inbox pings with an e-mail from NetGalley. There I was being told that I could read 'Love Unscripted' that very second. Surely this was meant to be, right? Let's see. The blurb pretty much tells you exactly what the book is about.
I've said this so many times I'm getting tired of hearing it myself, but one genre I will always read time and again is romance. I'm the ultimate hopeless romantic. I grew up reading all genres, but romance always, always put that special smile on my face. I'm a believer and I love HEA's, where it's appropriate of course. I don't only read books that contain a happy ever after. This story was lovely and it made me cry with its ending. Yeah, that soppy, snotty cry. Not pretty, but I don't care. What I do care about is the fact that I came to love these characters. The MC's are young. Ryan is 26 and Taryn 27 and although throughout most of the book the writing for me felt very 'young', the story is what kept me going.
All Ryan wants is to be loved for who he is, not for what he is and most certainly not for what he has. He's been toyed with, cheated on and being a mega movie star definitely has it's downfall. He has absolutely no privacy. The only thing the paparazzi didn't take a picture of in this book, surprisingly, was Ryan on the loo. Had I lead his life, I would have surely ended up in a mental institution. But, perhaps that's why most movie stars turn out the way they do. I'm not excusing the fact that most of them become involved with drugs and alcohol, but I can see why most of them head that way.
Taryn, a bar owner in Rhode Island hasn't had much luck in the male department either and she's the only one in town who doesn't swoon over Ryan Christensen. Her last boyfriend cheated on her, too. She's seen it all, heard all the lies so it's no wonder she's not very trusting. Neither of them are. However, they try their damnest to make their relationship work, but boy, what an uphill battle. So darn frustrating, I wanted to scream. The crap that's printed about them, the stories that are constantly made up are enough to drive a person over the edge. As if this was all they had to contend with, Ryan has absolutely freaky, crazy, downright sleazy fans following him everywhere. Add a previous girlfriend to the mix not excluding his current leading lady all trying to drive a rift between them. What was scary though was the fact that Ryan was being stalked while Taryn received death threats. She was now also kind of being stalked. Well, as far as I'm concerned he was a stalker and someone I hated right from the beginning. I seriously wanted to slap some sense into him. There are a number of forces working against this couple constantly.There was a stage where, although Ryan had told Taryn that she must never believe what she sees or hears, I thought: come on Ryan, you are a good guy but really if you are that good of an actor, is it really necessary to pretend for the media in order to boost ticket sales?. This for me was hogwash and the one and only thing I didn't like about Ryan. Everyone has choices, and were I in his position, I would have told whoever to bugger off - publicist, manager, the whole lot of them. If they didn't like the fact that I wasn't prepared to 'lie' and 'mislead' the public with false photos and being seen with different woman, then tough. One should always have some form of integrity. Enough said.
So, in conclusion although I ended up enjoying parts of this book, there are however quite a few things I didn't. I did mention that the writing sounded young. A lot of the writing was silly and often times there was just too much information. Most times, sentences were cheesy. Cheesiness tends to put me off and be aware that this book is extremely long. 695 pages long. Still, I enjoyed this book and loved the ending, but I will admit that it took me a long while to really get into it. At about 60% it got better, and by this stage I now wanted to know what was going to happen! There is so much in the beginning of the book that could have been re-written and a heck of a lot more that should have been removed, especially as Ms. Reber was picked up by a publishing house. Just my opinion. Look, I couldn't have done any better myself - I'm not an author, but with a bit of rearranging, this book could have been so much better in every other aspect. A few more things: too many exclamation marks mainly with Ryan's dialogue, I wasn't convinced with the 'honey' bit in relation to Ryan calling Taryn 'honey' right from the beginning (just seemed strange), and repetition regarding the fans - yes, we know that that's how it rolls but it should have been compacted into a sentence or two, not pages of the same thing over and over again.
I love the story. I only wish someone would tighten this book up. Regardless of my niggly bits, this story is doing very well indeed and there's your proof.
From the author's website:
Tina Reber’s debut, LOVE UNSCRIPTED, has sold over 90,000 ebooks on Kindle alone in the U.S. and has collectively received over 10,000 overwhelmingly positive reviews and ratings on Amazon and Goodreads. It has consistently ranked in the Kindle Top 100.
RATING: 3 STARS