Title: No Love Allowed
Author: Kate Evangelista
Publisher: Swoon Reads
Rating: 4/5 Stars
Publication Date: April 19th, 2016
Summary: Caleb desperately needs a fake girlfriend. Either he attends a series of parties for his father’s law firm with a pretty girl on his arm, or he gets shipped off to Yale to start a future he’s not ready for and isn’t sure he wants. And sadly, the last unattached girl in his social circle has just made the grievous mistake of falling in love with him. Fortunately, Didi, recently fired waitress and aspiring painter, is open to new experiences. As the summer ticks by in a whirl of lavish parties, there’s only one rule: They must not fall in love!
I received an ARC copy of this book from Swoon Reads and also from author Kate Evangelista herself for winning a giveaway! (And let me just start off by saying that Kate is a TOTAL sweetheart and I loved reviewing a book for such a kind and friendly author like her!)
As the summary explains, Caleb Parker is a notorious heartbreaker and rich boy who is known for having "no strings attached" relationships with girls. But hey, at least he's up front about it - his number one rule with all of the girls that he dates is that there will be absolutely no falling in love. So, since he's naturally such a charming and gorgeous and rich boy, all of these girls find it pretty difficult to adhere to his number one rule. And once they break it, they're out.
So this is where Didi Alexander comes in, a sharp-tongued, sassy girl who's barely struggling to make ends meet and sticks out like a sore thumb in Caleb's world. When Caleb's father gives him an ultimatum to attend all of his law firm's summer events (preferably with a date), Caleb's stuck - being that he's already cycled through all of the girls in Dodge Cove's elite. After meeting Didi, he decides to offer her the chance to be his fake girlfriend all summer to help keep his father off his back. The rules stand for her too: no falling in love. But once their little charade starts, Caleb finds that Didi isn't the one breaking his rule: he is.
What I found really interesting about this book is that it still manages to be classified as a young adult book even though the characters of the book technically graduated high school a few months before the story started. So at first it took me a little bit to actually get a grip on how old Caleb and Didi were, but I eventually realized that this book just seems to classify as being on the tail end of being YA, but still YA nonetheless being that it didn't contain any of that typical steamy content that's basically a given with NA books.
I really liked this book, and there was really only one thing that I wasn't crazy about. Brace yourselves, because if you've been a follower of this blog for quite some time, you've come to know that the one thing that really irks me in books is the instalove factor. I definitely felt that with this book, which is really the only complaint I have about it. I was barely into the book at all when Caleb already starts acknowledging his lust for Didi, which one could argue is normal for a teenage boy. (Yes, I can see that.) But on their first official "project" together he already outwardly tells her what his appearance is doing to him....I don't know. I just felt like their relationship moved way too fast throughout the book, and that's the only thing that threw me off a little bit.
Other than that, I really enjoyed this book! I don't know why exactly, but I really like reading books about super wealthy characters and watching them spend their money on lavish and amazing things. (I guess it's because a girl can dream, right? Living vicariously through book characters is just going to have to work out somehow until I can do the real thing myself, one day.) Nate was definitely my favorite character of them all, even though he was a supporting character, because he was just such the perfect wingman and best friend. Seriously. I think everyone in this world can use a reliable best friend like Nathan. He was funny in all the right moments, and always reliable and willing to lend a hand in both Caleb and Didi's plots. Definitely my favorite.
Didi's character was also super entertaining. She was witty and quick, and ultra flirty regarding Caleb, which was super adorable to read. What I liked most about her is the fact that she was a girl who knew what she wanted and spoke up for herself - she wasn't like any of the rich airhead girls that Caleb had been with before. Which brings me to the subject of Caleb...who seems like a super jerk and spoiled rich boy on the outside, but when you get inside his head for certain scenes, you get to see that he's really just a super deep (and HOT) and emotional boy struggling with the loss of his mother and the ability to love somebody else again.
All in all, No Love Allowed was an adorable read about letting go of your past and accepting new love, and learning that you can be compatible with people who aren't necessarily from the same walk of life as you are. (Minor spoiler ahead) The end of the book had me smiling and giggly, and it ended in the true Swoon Reads fashion, where you are left literally swooning. I'd definitely recommend it to anybody looking for a light, fun read as a pick me up! Kate Evangelista is a great writer and I'd definitely be interested in reading more of her work in the future!