Authors: Emily Wibberley & Austin Siegemund-Broka
Genre: YA Contemporary
Release Date: 04.20.21
Source: E-ARC from Publisher via NetGalley
My Rating: 4.5/5 stars
SYNOPSIS: “Since high school began, Alison Sanger and Ethan Molloy have competed on almost everything. AP classes, the school paper, community service, it never ends. If Alison could avoid Ethan until graduation, she would. Except, naturally, for two over-achieving seniors with their sights on valedictorian and Harvard, they share all the same classes and extracurriculars. So when their school’s principal assigns them the task of co-planning a previous class’s ten-year reunion, with the promise of a recommendation for Harvard if they do, Ethan and Alison are willing to endure one more activity together if it means beating the other out of the lead.
But with all this extra time spent in each other’s company, their rivalry begins to feel closer to friendship. And as tension between them builds, Alison fights the growing realization that the only thing she wants more than winning…is Ethan.”
Emily Wibberley and Austin Siegemund-Broka have done it again.
This author duo has been an absolute favorite of mine since I read their debut in 2018, and I always get so thrilled when their books release each year. So, I was already thrilled about their upcoming release, but my excitement doubled when I learned this is a rivals-to-lovers story! It’s one of my favorite tropes and I was looking forward to see how Wibbroka would do it…and oh my gosh. I couldn’t get enough of the competitive dynamic between Alison and Ethan. Their banter was witty, quick, and created an undeniable tension between them.
But, aside from the romance, there was so much else that I loved about this book. For starters, I love how Emily and Austin write perfectly flawed characters. While Alison was a bit judge-y to start, she was also someone who I could cheer for. Then don’t get me started on character development! I loved the journey Alison took throughout this story. I thought her personal growth was extremely well crafted.
I loved the imagery and sets in this book. I normally don’t consider the scenery in books in too much detail, but there are so many distinct locations that are stuck in my mind. I loved the chemistry in the kissing scenes, the coffee fueled late night studying aesthetic. I loved the school newspaper, Alison’s family, and the competition for valedictorian. This book was Emily Wibberley and Austin Siegemund-Broka at their best, and I truly cannot recommend it enough.
If you’re a fan of the rivals-to-lovers trope, banter, and amazing character development, then What’s Not to Love is the book for you. It releases April 20th 2021!
Thank you so much to the publisher for providing me with an e-ARC.