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The Friend Zone (Game On #2), by Kristen Callihan

The Friend Zone______________________________________________

Gray doesn’t make friends with women. He has sex with them. Until Ivy.

The last thing star tight-end Gray Grayson wants to do is drive his agent’s daughter’s bubblegum pink car. But he needs the wheels and she’s studying abroad. Something he explains when she sends him an irate text to let him know exactly how much pain she’ll put him in if he crashes her beloved ride. Before he knows it, Ivy Mackenzie has become his best texting bud. But then Ivy comes home and everything goes haywire. Because the only thing Gray can think of is being with Ivy.

Ivy doesn’t have sex with friends. Especially not with a certain football player. No matter how hot he makes her…

Gray drives Ivy crazy. He’s irreverent, sex on a stick, and completely off limits. Because, Ivy has one golden rule: never get involved with one of her father’s clients. A rule that’s proving harder to keep now that Gray is doing his best to seduce her. Her best friend is fast becoming the most irresistible guy she’s ever met.

Which means Gray is going to have to use all his skills to get himself out of the friend zone and into Ivy’s heart. Game on
______________________________________________

Oh My Gray!!!!!!!

“IvyMac: I’m…prickly. I don’t mean to be.
GrayG: Prickly? Naw. You’re…saucy. Like that sauce on a Big Mac.
IvyMac: If you call me special sauce, you lose a nut.
GrayG: I knew it, you’re talking dirty to me! Shenanigans!
IvyMac: Lol. Dork
GrayG: That’s Cupcake to you, Special Sauce.”

I was so looking forward to this book! First, I loved The Hook-Up so much it’s not even funny! I couldn’t wait for The Friend Zone to come out and I was going crazy because the release date came out so long after the first book. Or maybe it didn’t but it felt like forever to me. All I could think of during these months of waiting for Grayson’s story was how freaking bad I wanted it and how freaking cruel the teaser had been, because I kept picturing him in this ridiculously small and pink car and I wanted to know the girl it belonged to and how her and Grayson would become friend and then more. I’m such a sucked for friend falling in love that I kept The Friend Zone Goodreads page open from the moment I finished The Hook-Up until I finally had book #2 in my possession. I think it’s safe to say that I was going a little crazy over this book.

Now that this is covered, I think I need to warn you a little bit here. This review will probably involve a lot of gushing and not a lot of actual reviewing. It’s been a long time this this happened but it should be taken as a good sign in regard of this book: the more gushing involve, the more I liked it and recommend it. But I hope it does a good job at telling you why I loved this book so much, at least a little.

“You are the happiness I never realized I needed.”

I loved Gray and Ivy’s story. How they met, how they became friends, how they became more, everything about their story, I pretty much loved.

Gray was such a great character to get to know, a lot more complex than what he seems in book #1 except for the glimpse the author gave us at the end. He was so funny and I don’t know he just made me swoon like crazy and it’s hard to think straight when he’s involved.

“Jay-sus, he’s hot. And freaking huge. A veritable mountain of sexy. Seriously, Iv…You could climb him like Everest, make base camp at his cock, and tackle the rest in the morning.”

Ivy was great too. She was sassy and sharp-witted and she had two left foot when it came to dancing and she was just so cute and funny! I think I might have a girl crush on her. I loved her from the moment she send that first text to Gray. I loved how she saw Gray for who he was and not the player with a reputation for screwing everything in a skirt, and how her faith in him never wavered. I loved that she wouldn’t settle for less than what she wanted where Gray was involved, but also in her life. I could really relate to her character and what she was going through when she first met Gray. And she really made me laugh too. I loved the banter and complicity between her and Gray. I ate it all up!

“You’ve owned me from ‘Shenanigans,’ Ivy Mac.”

I loved their dynamic, how it was almost second nature for them to be together and how they felt empty and like something was missing if they couldn’t see or talk to each other.

“I just like her. I really like her. She’s the first person I want to talk to. Every day.”

I wish Gray and Ivy’s story never ended because I want to keep reading about it!! For a lover of friends falling in love with each other, this book was a wonder! I think it’s the best story of two people becoming real friends and eventually falling for each other that I have ever read.

“…all I wanted to do was kiss her, explore the gentle curve of her lower lip before sucking on it. And Ivy would have flipped out. Because friends do not maul other friend’s mouths.”

This book was funny, sweet, sexy (oh my Gosh, so sexy!) and low drama (which is always a plus for me). It made me laugh, it definitely made me swoon, and it made me squirm too.

“I’ve never been in love before.”
I have to smile as I snuggle closer.“Neither have I.”
Gray breathes in deep.“Drew was right. It’s better than football.”

I loved reading Gray and Ivy’s text messages. Seriously, if you don’t have a goofy grin on your face after reading the texts they send each other, I’m ready to say there is something wrong with you, in all kindness of course 🙂 The nicknames they gave each other and the easiness between them made this even better. I loved the building sexual tension between them and how they skirted the line between friends and more until they crossed it completely (damn this phone conversation almost made my Kindle explode it was so hot!). Yes, you guessed it, there is a very big dose of steam in this book as well. It did feel a little different to me than the steam in The Hook-Up, but it was just as good. I swear, Gray soooooo did it for me. The phone scene, the bar scene, the shower, the everything. If he was involved it was pretty much always good. It was HAWT!

“And, God help me because the truth is Ivy has become a craving in my blood, racing through me hot and thick.”

I loved how Ivy was a game changer for Gray and how he never questioned where their relationship was going for him. I loved how Ivy found someone she could connect with in Gray and never doubted how important she was in his eyes. I loved the complicity between them. And I loved the last look we had into their lives at the end of the book even though I wish it never ended. I truly wanted this book to go on forever.

“There is one absolute truth. The sum of my existence equals you.”

I wish I could do a better job review it because this book is so much more than the story of two friends falling for each other to me. I loved everything about this book. The characters, the plot, the pace, the secondary characters (Gosh Ivy’s sister is the best – I kinda wish she gets her book too). Even what happens toward the end because it gave the story more depth and it just fit (even though I would have wished that to happen to them).

“The funny thing is, Ivy, falling in love with you was as easy as breathing. The best time of my life.”

I loved The Friend Zone just as much as I did The Hook-Up, even if it’s for different reasons and Gray and Ivy’s story has a special place in my heart and on my bookshelf.

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