☆☆☆ (3 Stars)
Dewey Belong Together has an amazing premise – Maxine is a wallflower in real life, but online she is Maximus-Damage the level 100 Dwarf Warrior in League of Magecraft. She’s been playing for over 10 years when she decides to host a get-together with her fellow guild members in Green Valley.
There’s a few important details though: 1. Maxine never told her online friends that she is a woman. 2. Last-minute all of her online friends bail, except for her archenemy Jonathan aka Wrath.
Stuck together for four days, can 10 years of online banter become a forever type of love?
I love the representation in this book, it’s own voices and it does a great job of explaining and showing mental illness. It’s so important to be accurate with these themes because unfortunately, I’ve seen far too many books vilify mental illness in the past. And here we get to see honest depictions of anxiety, agoraphobia and bipolar disorder.
However, even though the idea of this book is interesting on paper the execution to me was lacking.
We hear a lot about the rivalry between Maximus and Wrath, but we don’t get to see any of it. When they meet for the first time it feels very insta-lovey from Jonathan’s perspective, just because we don’t get to see them interact before, we don’t experience the falling in love process, the pining or push and pull.
This happens a few more times in the book where we hear characters talking about certain events, but we don’t experience them with them. Other times the book starts building tension only to be deflated before we could get more emotionally involved. Or, going from 0 to 100 so fast we don’t get to make the leap with the characters, feeling the same emotions as them.
This leads to some anticlimactic moments, like their first kiss. It came so out of left-field that I was surprised – “Oh, I guess they are kissing already – huh… How about that…” Which is sad because I’m such a big stan of great first kisses.
After the halfway mark the plot got a bit lost and I just didn’t feel invested in their romance anymore. The pacing was off and it dragged until the very end.
If you’re not into online gaming and pop culture I don’t think you will be able to get invested in Dewey Belong Together. If you are a self proclaimed geek with a passion for romance novels you might be able to enjoy it.
I think overall this book had the potential to be amazing, but unfortunately I just couldn’t connect with it the way I wanted to.
Thank you so much Smartypants Romance for the complimentary copy in exchange for an honest review.