You can’t divorce yourself from love…
Emily Saturn’s world is spinning out of control. An intellectual property lawyer, she’s gone rogue from her firm, dealing with a major lawsuit against a predatory software company’s CEO pro bono. When she isn’t looking for elusive evidence she can use—legally, of course—she’s trying to avoid her soon-to-be ex-husband, Bobby March.
After their whirlwind courtship and wedding, Bobby can’t pinpoint what went wrong between them. He’s been working for months on his new career and personal growth, determined to be the man his wife deserves. Desperate to get her attention, Bobby invites Emily to a series of individually designed virtual escape rooms, each one a moment from their love story. Hopefully, the sexy, romantic trip down memory lane will rekindle their intense connection—and clue him in as to how to fix this.
Emily has never been able to resist a puzzle. Or, frankly, Bobby. The more she interacts with her husband online, the more she wants to see him again in person. Which is beyond stupid because Emily knows he’s wrong for her. Right?
Emily and Bobby’s story is a second chance romance–you might even consider it a marriage in trouble one, as long as by “in trouble” you mean one of the characters is essentially trying to decimate it from the first page.
Like the first two books in the series ( Disaster Girl and Scammer Girl ) we only see one side of the story–here it’s Emily, an intellectual property lawyer who walked out on her husband about six months prior and hasn’t seen him since. She’s moved to a new city, started a new job, and pretty much ignores most contact from him. As the book begins, she’s started divorce proceedings.
Bobby has no idea what he did wrong, and amazingly, since we’re in Emily’s head for the whole book, neither do we for more than 3/4 of it. That might be the best illustration of the author’s skill–even though we’re seeing everything from Emily’s first person POV, we honestly have no idea why her marriage imploded until almost the end. We’re in the dark just as much as Bobby is, and even though his time on the page (other than flashbacks) is really pretty minimal, that more than anything else makes him a sympathetic character. We can feel his despair and frustration, because it’s ours too. OMG, this book put me through the wringer, I tell you.
The use of virtual escape rooms here was really cool–it would be awesome if the ebook gave you access to the actual “rooms” as you read (you don’t really need them, Ms Dayton’s descriptions are more than adequate, but seriously, how awesome would that be?) I loved how they played into the storyline, especially the final one. And spoiler–the book’s not named Escape Girl just because of the use of that technology 😉
Second chance romances can be tricky–the audience needs to understand why the couple didn’t make it the first time and be convinced that this time will actually be different. Honestly, they really don’t work a lot of the time; it’s a fine line. Ms Dayton knocked it out of the park with this one, though. And she made me cry just a little while she did it (mostly happier tears, toward the end, but they weren’t all. It was an emotional rollercoaster, I tell you.) IDK what was in the water in the home where Jamie and Bobby grew up, but OMG did it help them to be the most awesome heroes ever!
And oh yeah, the case that Emily was working on throughout the story was kick-a**! I absolutely loved the career choices it helped her to make, and the way she took down a total jerk like a boss.
Escape Girl, the third book in Michelle Dayton‘s series Tech-nically Love, and it has connections to events and people who have showed up in previous series books. So while it *technically* could be read as a standalone, you’d miss out on a lot of the behind-the-scenes background stuff (especially with what was going on with Bobby in book 2) so I really wouldn’t recommend it.
Besides, this is such a good series. Do yourself a favor and read them all!
Rating: 4 1/2 stars / A
I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book.