January 24, 2018

REVIEW: xo, Zach

xo, Zach, by Kendall Ryan
Publish Date:
January 23, 2018
Publisher: self-published
Format: e-ARC, provided by the author
Genre: adult contemporary romance
To Buy: Amazon | Barnes & Noble

Rating: 4 STARS

(Synopsis) The first time we met was at a party. 

Your ex arrived to show off the person he'd left you for last month, and you asked me to pretend to be your date.

I was more than happy to help. You were attractive, smart and witty--and that kiss we shared? It left me wanting you for days.

The second time we met was in my office on campus where we were both surprised to discover you were the new master’s degree student in poetry that I would be working with. You promised to be professional. I did no such thing.

The late nights and intense study sessions spent alongside you majorly throw me off my game. I want you, and I fight with myself daily over this fact.

I know I'm crass, that my sexual innuendos and dirty mouth annoy you, but I live for those two bright spots of color in your cheeks. If that's the only reaction I can get out of you, I'll gladly take it.

You hate Mondays so every Monday I slip an anonymous poem into your bag and your smile gets me through the week.
I think I'm falling for you, and I know it's wrong. I know that I'm only supposed to be the adviser to your program and nothing more, but here's the thing. I think you're falling for me too.

xo, Zach

Zach may be the perfect man. He's sexy, smart, thoughtful and he writes personal love poems. Swoon. City. Poppy has lady balls of steel, because she resisted this manly package of perfection for far longer than any other warm blooded girl would have. For a while, I found that frustrating. Until it became clear what she was so worried about when it came to him, and then I felt so badly for her, because talk about being between a rock and a hard place. 

See, Zach is Poppy's advisor for her masters class. He's not her professor, but he is the faculty member who is assigned to grad students to help critique their work and to point them down the right career path. Although it's not as bad as if he were her professor, it's still frowned upon for a grad student to be objectifying her advisor. And due to her life circumstances, Poppy has no room for error. 

Zach is equally in a tough spot. He can't stop thinking about Poppy, even when he knows he should. The thing I loved the most about Zach is that he never adopted any pretense with Poppy. No games. Just the truth. From the get-go, Zach told her that he was thinking of her. That he wanted her. For sex AND a relationship. He tried to dial back his attraction, but when it became clear that it was a lost cause, he abandoned it and was determined to find a way for them to be together. So, in addition to being sexy, smart and thoughtful, he's also a straight shooter. See? Perfect man. 

There was a ton of push and pull between these two, and most of it was on Poppy's side. She'd give in a little, then pull back. Give in... pull back. It ramped up the sexual tension between them, that's for sure. It seemed to simmer forever. But, when they finally gave in, it was so incredible. 

Zach's mother threatened to steal the show every time she showed up. She was absolutely hysterical, and the relationship she has with her son is wonderful. Her unfiltered commentary on his sex life was the absolute best. 

xo, Zach was another Kendall Ryan winner with a swoony boy and a bookworm girl who fall into forbidden love. 

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