Published by Berkley Books on March 1, 2022
I received this book for free from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
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Things get textual when a steamy message from a random wrong number turns into a thrilling anonymous relationship in this hilarious rom-com by Lynn Painter.
Bad luck has always followed Olivia Marshall...or maybe she's just the screw-up her family thinks she is. But when a What are you wearing? text from a random wrong number turns into the hottest, most entertaining--albeit anonymous--relationship of her life, she thinks things might be on the upswing....
Colin Beck has always considered Olivia his best friend's annoying little sister, but when she moves in with them after one of her worst runs of luck, he realizes she's turned into an altogether different and sexier distraction. He's sure he can keep his distance, until the moment he discovers she's the irresistible Miss Misdial he's been sort of sexting for weeks--and now he has to decide whether to turn the heat up or ghost her before things get messy.
An enjoyable story.
Olivia Marshall is a bit of a hot mess. It never occurred to Olivia when she introduced her boyfriend to her attractive co-worker because they would be perfect to work on a project together that they would thank her by falling madly in love with each other. Nor did it occur to her while she was burning all his love letters that something might go wrong and burn down her whole apartment building. That’s how she ends up sleeping on an air mattress in her brother’s shared apartment back in her home town of Omaha. Everything crazy seems to always happen to Olivia.
While she is wallowing in the misery of all these combined mishaps, Olivia gets a random text from a wrong number asking her what she is wearing. This is the beginning of a random but intriguing friendship between Mr. Wrong Number and Misdial. When Olivia had moved in with her boyfriend, she lost touch with most of her high school and college friends so Mr. Wrong Number became someone she could talk to and anonymously confide in to help her get through this hard time. What she doesn’t know is that Mr. Wrong Number turns out to be her brother’s best friend and roommate, Mr. Perfect — Colin Beck.
Colin is trying to brake free from the legacy of the law firm of Beck, Beck and Beck and live his own life without the country club and the private school and legacy college. He got his mother to agree to let him go to public school where he met Olivia’s brother, Jack, and endless scholarship offers allowed Colin to pick his own future. Back in High School, Colin and Jack would laugh at Olivia’s antics and tease her mercilessly, which crushed young Olivia’s teenaged crush on Colin.
At the beginning of the story, we have Colin tolerating Jack letting his chaotic little sister crash for one month only in his home office space and hoping Olivia’s bad luck doesn’t burn down their condo too. Colin enjoys his unconventional friendship with Misdial until the night he sees his responding texts popping up on Olivia’s phone and then he knows he needs to shut down any further flirting with his best friend’s little sister. But while Colin ghosts Olivia, Olivia continues texting Mr. Wrong Number first as a continued outlet for her thoughts but also hoping that one day he will respond to her again. Eventually, Colin gives up trying to ignore Olivia’s texts and starts up their conversations again because Olivia has stopped being Jack’s annoying little sister and started becoming an intriguing woman who has captured his attention.
One kiss crosses that line of friendship into something more. Suddenly things are looking up for Olivia. She lands a dream job. Romance with Colin might be blooming into something more. Then Olivia catches on to the fact that Colin is her Mr. Wrong Number. The worse part is that now she know he was aware that she was Ms. Misdial and allowed her to continue to share her private anonymous thoughts with him. The betrayal is crushing. Can Olivia and Colin most past their past and create their own future?
I enjoyed the light-hearted fun between Misdial and Mr. Wrong number. I like that Colin didn’t have creepy, sexy thoughts about young Olivia. She was just his friend’s annoying little sister until he realized she is his Misdial and he started to see her in a new light of an interesting, grown up woman. I also like that Colin realizes that he has been wrong all this time thinking of Olivia as being a hot mess. He realizes that Olivia throws her whole self into everything she does and sometimes it works out and sometimes it fails but she always put her heart into it.
What I was disappointed in was the fact that Colin considers Olivia a great writer and when Olivia gets an offer to be a writer at the times, we are told she is making news herself and everyone is discussing her articles, but we don’t get to see any of those articles ourselves. I would have like to see some examples of Olivia’s clever humor. We also have both Olivia and Colin being bullied by a parent. Olivia’s mother is constantly disappointed in all of Olivia’s failings and Colin is bullied by his father because he is too old for a roommate and because he wants Colin to be part of the law firm even though he doesn’t have a law degree but anything other than owning your own business is beneath a Beck. Even Colin’s relationship with Olivia is grabbing at “low hanging fruit” as she is living in Colin’s apartment. Neither Olivia nor Colin slapped down these parental attacks before the end of the story and I was disappointed that we were left with these horrible bullying parents with neither standing up for themselves.
Mr Wrong Number was an enjoyable story and it’s only failing was leaving me wanting a little more character building to fill out the story a little more.