When Joss Met Matt
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In the tradition of New Adult superstar Jessica Sorensen, Ellie Cahill’s debut novel is a charming friends-with-benefits story . . . with a twist!
What if after every bad breakup, there was someone to help “cleanse your palate”—someone who wouldn’t judge you, who was great in bed, someone you were sure not to fall in love with? “Sorbet sex” could solve everything—as long as it never got too sweet.
Joss and Matt have been friends since freshman year of college, meeting one night after Joss is dumped by her boyfriend. After a few drinks, Matt humors her with a proposition: that he’ll become her go-to guy whenever she needs to heal a broken heart. In return, she’ll do the same for him. The #1 Rule: They’ll never fall in love with each other. People scoff at the arrangement. But six years later, Joss and Matt are still the best of friends . . . with benefits.
Through a string of boyfriends and girlfriends—some almost perfect, some downright wrong—Joss and Matt are always there for each other when the going gets tough. No strings. No attachments. Piece of cake. No problem. After all, since they wrote the rules, surely they can play by them. Or can they?
Advance praise for When Joss Met Matt
“Hands down, one of my favorite New Adult reads . . . Ellie Cahill is definitely one to watch!”—New York Times bestselling author Cora Carmack
“This is one of those books that make you forget everything around you. Prepare to be consumed by this story.”—Sophie Jordan, New York Times bestselling author of Wild
“Fun, sexy, and full of amazing chemistry, When Joss Met Matt is an entertaining escape that will leave you smiling with every turn of the page.”—Cassie Mae, author of The Real Thing
From the Trade Paperback edition.
From Publishers Weekly
© Publishers Weekly
Wow. You know, I'm not even sure there are words for how much I loved this book! The general story line should have made this just another cute but predictable romance. Two friends with benefits who eventually find themselves feeling more has been done so many times before, and I've always enjoyed it. But this one was very different, and I could not put it down!
Joss and Matt meet in their freshman year of college. There's no sexually charged atmosphere when they first, no fireworks, no epic drama. And that's what make the story so fascinating. They're just two people meeting, talking a little, and maybe wanting a kiss that doesn't happen. So when they meet again in class, a genuine friendship develops, and when Joss's boyfriend dumps her in the douchiest way possible, that friendship enters an entirely new plane.
The sorbet idea is hilarious and oddly genius. They jokingly but seriously decide to cleanse their palates of exes by crossing that line with each other, like sorbet between courses of a meal. But while this is another point in the story where things could have become cliche, instead they simply continue on with their genuine and unromantic friendship, each knowing they have someone to lean on, but neither seeing the other as a viable romantic interest. And so their arrangement continues through bad dating choices, awkward break-ups, and the journey into becoming semi-mature, responsible adults. The story switches between present day and their shared past, from the moment they met through every major event in between, and while I usually get annoyed with flashbacks, I flat out love the way their story was told here.
Matt is not your typical romance novel hero. He's attractive, sure, but it's understated. He doesn't automatically turn every head in the room, and he doesn't treat Joss like she's anything more than his best friend. They see each other through years of relationship, Joss becomes friends with Matt's serious girlfriend, and she even goes so far as to set him up with someone else. And through all those flashbacks, love sort of just sneaks up on them.
It unfolds slowly, at the perfect pace to see just how much they mean to each other, even when they neither of them realize their feelings are becoming much deeper. I'm usually a bit impatient with this kind of pace, but this one was worth every bit of the wait. In that way, it reminded me a little of When Harry Met Sally, how even though I wanted them to get together, I was having too much fun watching their friendship to want to rush it. But the big moment when they finally get there? It's been 24 hours, and I'm still swooning!
I don't think I can properly explain just how great a read When Joss Met Matt is, so you'll just have to trust me and pre-order it now. Seriously, right now. This is without a doubt one of my favorite New Adult books in years.
***FicCentral received this book from Random House LLC (via NetGalley) for free in exchange for an honest review.
Awesome friend and dating book!
Joss and Matt first meet as freshmen in college. They seem like they are meant for one another, but end up as very best friends instead.
One night, after a weirdly bad breakup, Joss turns to Matt to figure out how to move on so she can get back into the dating pool. Matt suggests an agreement called "Sorbet" - the cleaning of the palate for in between dating and lovers.
It works almost too well, since neither Joss, nor Matt fall seriously for anyone else and they are in complete denial of how they feel about one another. The rules say... well... they keep a changin'.
Between jobs, school, friends and lovers who come and go the one real constant in each others lives is the best friendship that they share. It is filled with laughter, sex, food, and so much more!!
This story is so light and funny with witty banter and sexy kisses that I am thinking up on the big screen it would be a hit! I am sure hoping someone out there in Hollywood reads this book it is a keeper for sure!!
Joss and Matt's story is one of the best relationship stories I have read in a long time and if you really love romance, this one is for the permanent shelf. Trust me!!
***This ARC copy was given by Netgalley.com for review purposes
Refreshingly Fun Twist on Friends-to-Lovers
WHEN JOSS MET MATT
by Ellie Cahill
February 24, 2015
Publisher: Ballantine Books - Random House LLC
354 pages, approximately
Romance: Contemporary, New Adult / College, Friends-to-Lovers
** Provided by NetGalley in Exchange for an Honest Review. **
-- SYNOPSIS --
Ellie Cahill is poised to coin the term “sorbet sex” with her charming twist on the age-old ‘friends-with-benefits’ story.
Dating can be fun, but it can leave a nasty taste in your mouth. For Joss, ever since her longtime boyfriend cheated on her, she doesn’t want her last memory of a guy to be that jerk. Enter her college friend, Matt. They come up with a theory: after a bad break-up, a person needs to cleanse the palate with a little sorbet sex. Lovers for a night, but always back to being friends in the morning. The two can handle it because they have a contract: rules they wrote, rules they follow and rules they can sometimes bend. The arrangement works: everyone needs a little sorbet now and again … until it starts to be the only thing you want. And then Joss breaks the one rule they never wrote down: don’t fall in love.
-- MY THOUGHTS --
Alternating timelines, clearly defined and spanning seven years. First person (Joss's) POV.
They met as freshmen in college and fast became friends. After Joss suffers the breakup of a long-tern relationship, Joss and Matt agree that what is really needed is a "palate cleanser" aka Sorbet Sex, to get over the lingering "taste" of the cheating ex. From there, they build an impromptu "contract" of "DO's and DON'T for Sorbet Sex" and kind of mutually agree to be each other's unconventional Sorbet Sex partner of choice.
The characters are very well portrayed as new adults, suffering from growing pains and new-found independence. They are witty and smart yet flawed and still learning. The secondary characters add fun, enjoyable layers with both their positive and negative contributions to the story. Some of their dates made me cringe & others (T.J.) had me laughing 'til I cried. Priceless stuff, that was! It was easy to buy into the dialogue and character interaction as the plot progressed smoothly, back and forth, from the past to the present unlike many books have been capable of doing. Kudos to Ms. Cahill for creating such seamless transitions. The conflict was subtly hidden in the background of the "NOW" while you read through short moments of the present and catching up with lengthier snippets of the past seven years. There was some minor predictability, as would be given for most feel-good rom-coms. The conclusion was strong and solid. If you are looking for a fun, romantic comedy that has the quality of "the big screen", this is one to look at. I truly enjoyed this book, the characters and all the antics in between.
Heat Level: 3.5
Tina J / Unbound Passion
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