Spin-off Saturdays: On Saturdays, I will review a series that is a spin-off series. It is recommended that you read the original series first in order to get the most out of the spin-off series. Here is this week’s offering:
A Million Kisses in Your Lifetime is a spin-off of the Things I Wanted to Say (But Never Did)
SERIESous’ Top Picks: Fav Author
Series: Lancaster Universe
This is a spinoff of the standalone Things I Wanted to Say (But Never Did).
Linked with The Wrong Brother, The Reluctant Bride and Promises We Meant to Keep.
Author: Monica Murphy
Genre: Young Adult / New Adult, Contemporary, Romance, High School
Heat Rating: Hot
Point of View: First Person, Alternating
Publication Date: March 10, 2022
Source & Format: Author—eARC
I was consumed by Monica Murphy’s Things I Wanted to Say (But Never Did) when I read it last year. It was angsty, passionate and a soap opera in a book. It’s by far one of the best high-school-bully romances I’ve ever read. So I was excited to return to Lancaster Prep but I had no clue what to expect with this new book and its new characters.
How Does It Compare To The Original?
–Not A High School Bully Romance–
The romance between Whit and Summer in Things I Wanted to Say (But Never Did) is the definition of hate to love you. But here, the romance is more subtle and sweet than hard and angry. It was sweet watching them slowly fall for each other; for them each to see that they had more depth to their characters once they spent time together. There’s just something so charming about finding first love and that person who truly sees who you are for the first time. I loved how they were able to find a partner who they could be their true selves with–and not just the person their families were trying to mold them to be.
–Crew is Much Nicer than Whit–
Whit in was one of those characters you love to hate. Crew, he’s one of those characters with a tough exterior is a big softy inside. Much like Whit, he has an interesting family dynamic that he is trying to break free of. But he is quite the charmer when he wants to be and defintiely not as alpha male as his cousin.
–Just As Sexy–
Monica Murphy writes her books with plenty of steam, even her YA ones. I think some people will find that off-putting if they don’t enjoy erotica or sex scenes, but fans of her work will feel right at home with her steamy scenes.
Anything I Didn’t Like?
I’ll admit, it took me a while (about a third of the book) to get into this. But that’s because Wren and Crew really don’t know each other. They’re just classmates who have their preconceived ideas about each other and usually stay away from each other until a class project brings them together. There is an underlying tension and chemistry between them but it really doesn’t spark until they start spending more time together. That’s when this book starts coming alive.
How it Links / Crosses Over With Other Monica Murphy Works:
Other than a brief mention of Whit and his relation to Crew at the start of this novel (their cousins), you can definitely read this independently from Things I Wanted to Say (But Never Did). However, Crew Lancaster is related to a few of Monica’s other lead characters. Crew’s brother Grant has a novella titled The Wrong Brother and his sister Charlotte is the heroine in the Midnight Dynasty Series The Reluctant Bride!
Series Rating: 4/5
With plenty of steam, sweet and swoon this romance will slowly melt your heart as you read.
Read if You Like: First love, prep school romances
Avoid if You: dislike sexual content in your YA romances
- Just Friends by Monica Murphy (Friends Series #1)
- Smut by Karina Halle
- After Math by Denise Grover Swank (Off the Subject Series #1)
Synopsis for A Million Kisses in Your Lifetime (from Goodreads):
Wren Beaumont is many things.
At Lancaster Prep, the girls love her. They all want to be her friend. Only I see Wren for who she really is.
A repressed little virgin who keeps her feelings locked up so tight she’s probably close to bursting. She thinks she’s above us all.
I shouldn’t be drawn to her. She’s not my type.
Until we’re forced to work together in class and realize we might have more things in common than we originally thought. Soon enough I find myself completely obsessed. I will do anything for this girl to make her fall in love with me.