Truth, Lies, & Second Dates

MaryJanice Davidson

Genre:  #ContemporaryRomance #RomanticComedy #MurderMystery #RomanticSuspense

My Rating:  3.5

Cover: 3.5

POV:  Alternating Third-person narrative

Publication:  December 15th 2020

Read:  September 11th 2020  *Review copy provided by NetGalley via St. Martin’s Press

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A sweet and sassy contemporary romance from New York Times bestselling author MaryJanice Davidson!

Captain Ava Capp has been flying from her past for a decade. She’d much rather leave it, and her home state, behind forever. But when she finds herself back in Minnesota, against her better judgment, everything goes sideways in a way she never expected it to.

M.E. Dr. Tom Baker has never forgotten Ava and the cold case she ran away from. When she shows up unexpectedly in town, in spite of himself, sparks fly. Which is terrible because he can’t stop his growing attraction to her. Can these two Type-A’s let their guards down and work together to put Ava’s tragic past behind her for good? And keep their hands off each other at the same time?


My Review:  3.5 Stars

Truth, Lies, and Second DatesTruth, Lies, and Second Dates by MaryJanice Davidson

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

3.5 Stars…
I was actually torn between 3 & 3.5 stars for this rating. I ended up generously awarding the latter. Truth, Lies and Second Dates had the potential to be a five star read for me. Unfortunately, I didn’t love it, didn’t connect nor did I feel the writing was smooth. The pace was slow in my opinion. At least the first half of the book felt that way. This book is 320 pages but it felt like much more.

From the synopsis, I inferred the story to be different from what it was. The premise was explained well enough but the execution didn’t work for me. To be honest, I expected a darker tone. Ava, one of the main characters, was too sarcastic for me to take seriously; and her humor made me cringe during certain conversations. There is a time and a place for everything. This author didn’t feel that way. As a result, I wasn’t laughing all the time. The dialogue between characters was okay, but at times I had to re-read paragraphs because I could not follow along. Several times, I wondered if I missed some vital information because too many aspects didn’t make sense. Another aspect that interrupted my reading flow was the inserts of definitions at the end of each chapter and way too many parenthesis throughout the text. Also, the sudden switches in POV were another issue I had with flow. This book was very busy.

At some point after 30%, I ignored the monotony and decided if I wanted to like this book at all, I would view this story as a murder mystery and not a romantic comedy, as well as ignore the numerous onslaught of tropes. While the romance aspect ended up being cute, I didn’t feel this book was romance. That’s ok, though because I knew going in that the author was integrating many tropes; unfortunately that just didn’t work for me. But thankfully, one stood out so I focused on that. The “who done it” aspect. And to my delight and surprise, I didn’t see the end coming. Nor was I able to guess the murderer until that moment of resolution. I warn you now, there is no foreshadowing in this book. Situations just spontaneously arise. That said, regarding the climax, or my view on it, it was rushed. I had to re-read part of that final scene a few times.

To sum this review up, I didn’t hate the book. While there were parts of the writing I didn’t connect with, there were a few that I delighted in. This author took the dark undertone from the main focus and wrote characters with intellect, witticism, flaws, outrageousness and created an original story. Truth, Lies, and Second Dates, was most definitely something I have never read before. Nor have I read this author before. You cannot take this book seriously.

I want to close this review with one thought. If you are researching this book, deciding if you will read it, don’t look too deeply into the reviews. There are many mixed feelings about this book. Some loved it, some hated it and like me, some thought is was okay. We all have different preferences when we chose a book and while this book didn’t resonate with me in a fully posiitve light, you may love it.

This is my honest and unbiased review and I thank you for taking the time to read it. 🙂


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