Much thanks to Stephanie from Carina Press for sending me a copy for review and for inviting me to be a part of this tour. This review is voluntary and opinions are fully my own. Also, all quotes are taken from the ARC and may or may not appear in the final published copy.
Title: House Rules
Author: Ruby Lang
Series: Uptown, #3 *easily read as a standalone
Length: approx. 47,000 words
Genre: Contemporary Romance; Romantic Comedy
Imprint: Carina Press
On-Sale: February 10, 2020
Format & Price: eBook $3.99
ROOMMATE WANTED to share a gorgeous sun-filled apartment in Central Harlem. Must love cats. No ex-husbands or wives need apply.
Seventeen years ago, different dreams pulled Simon Mizrahi and Lana Kai apart. But when Lana takes a position as a chef back in Manhattan, her apartment search puts her right in her ex-husband’s path. Music teacher Simon is also hunting for a new place to live, and when Lana proposes they be platonic roomies, well…it’s not the worst idea he’s ever heard.
A sunny uptown two-bedroom sounds far more appealing than the cramped, noisy space where he’s currently struggling to work. Still, Simon has seen firsthand that Lana’s a flight risk, so he agrees on a trial basis.
Three months. With strict boundaries.
Living together again feels wonderfully nostalgic, but when the ex-couple’s lingering feelings rise to the surface, the rules go out the window.
Of course, chemistry was never their problem. But while Simon’s career feels back on solid footing, Lana is still sorting out what she wants. With their trial period soon coming to an end, they’ll have to decide if their living arrangement was merely a sexy trip down memory lane or a reunion meant to last.
About the Author
Ruby Lang is the author of the acclaimed Practice Perfect series. She is pint-sized, prim, and bespectacled. Her alter ego, Mindy Hung, wrote about romance novels (among other things) for The Toast. Her work has also appeared in The New York Times, The Walrus, Bitch, and other fine venues. She enjoys running (slowly), reading (quickly), and ice cream (at any speed). She lives in New York with a small child and a medium-sized husband.
I’m happy to share that I am included in Harlequin Carina Press Blog Tour Team! For our first partnership, I am sharing my thoughts on House Rules by Ruby Lang. This is actually my second Ruby Lang book and my first read was a part of this series as well. You can check out my review of Open House, the second book of the uptown series by clicking this link. I actually an arc of the first book as well, but I haven’t got the chance to pick it up yet.
Knowing how much I loved the writing style of Ruby Lang, she was the Carina Press author I know that I’m interested to read more works from. I love that she also features Asian and diverse characters in her novellas. Surely is a plus point for me!
House Rules is an exes-to-lovers second chance story that also features one of my favorite tropes, which is exes having to live together under one roof. This book really knew how to tickle my fancy and I have to admit felt like it was designed for me.
This book definitely delivers the steam with all the hot scenes in this book. But, my only qualm with this book was that I was looking for a little more angst and conflict. Admittedly, Ruby does not often provide that and she goes with very realistically plotted stories.
I loved that House Rules, specifically, featured a couple in their 40s, who were previously married, and did not cheat on each other. It has witty banter, incorporating food, and classical music, too. Another plus point is the discussion of endometriosis, which is one of the most painful problems women go through.
Overall, House Rules was a quick fun contemporary read. I liked it very much and I am very excited to read more books written by Ruby Lang. (Maybe I should really go and read the first book now.)
My Book Rating Breakdown
🌼 Main Character:⭐⭐⭐⭐☆
🌼 Significant Other: ⭐⭐⭐⭐☆
🌼 Support Characters:⭐⭐⭐⭐☆
🌼 Writing Style:⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
🌼 Character Development:⭐⭐⭐⭐☆
🌼 Romance: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
🌼 Pacing: ⭐⭐⭐⭐☆
🌼 Ending: ⭐⭐⭐⭐☆
🌼 Unputdownability: ⭐⭐⭐⭐☆
🌼 Book Cover:⭐⭐⭐⭐☆
☁ FINAL VERDICT: 4.18 /5 ☁
She kissed him as they traveled uptown, under the too-bright lights of the rattling, rumbling 2 train, her hands stealing up past the thick collar of this coat, to his warm neck, to his hair.
“We’re disgracing ourselves,” Simon murmured, even as he nipped her earlobe and his fingers found the zip of her jacket and pulled it down. “Making out on the train, like teenagers.”
He watched the progress of the zipper avidly, as if it would reveal more than her scarf, her sweater, more layers and layers of clothing, as if he could see down to her skin. Then he tipped his tongue up to catch her again in a lush kiss.
She pushed her breast, or the area of her clothing that covered it, shamelessly into his hand, and he gave a muffled gasp that only made her wilder. The train seat felt too smooth and unsatisfying against her restless thighs.
Every stop on the walk home was marked by where they paused to kiss, where Simon pushed her up against a wall, and she ground her hips against his. A car slowed once and honked while they were pressed on the brick beside a beauty salon. Its headlights illuminated their desperate bodies, causing Lana to bury her head in the front of Simon’s coat. Simon laughed softly, an edge of incredulity in the sound.
“We should get back.”
They hurried now, swinging around the corner and down the block, through the gate and up, up the stairs, the thumping of their footsteps loud and urgent. Lana couldn’t help blushing at how impatient their running sounded. She and Simon burst in the door and into their dark hallway. Before the door fully closed, they’d fallen on each other, tripping in their haste to kick off shoes and unzip and unbutton each other, to unwind. It was as if they expected someone would stop them, someone wise and mature who’d tell them to think this through. But of course, they were the adults here, they were the ones in charge.
The fact that this was a bad idea only made Lana want it more.
Copyright © 2020 by Mindy Hung
♡ Yna the Mood Reader ♡