In Review: Stripped (Happy Endings #1) by Zoey Castile

Posted October 24, 2018 by Kim in 4 Stars, In Review / 0 Comments

In Review: Stripped (Happy Endings #1) by Zoey CastileStripped by Zoey Castile
Series: Happy Endings #1
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance
Publication date: September 4, 2018
Publisher: Novel Audio
Format: Audiobook, Length: 8 hours and 24 minutes
Narrator: Carmen Vine, Jacob Morgan
How I got it: From the library
Add it: Goodreads
Buy it: Amazon | Barnes & Noble
My rating:
Heat level: One FlameOne FlameOne FlameOne Flame

The day Robyn Flores meets Zac Fallon is one of those days. You know, when you’re already late for work. Mostly because you haven’t really slept since your best friend abandoned you for her fiancé and her exponentially better life. The kind of day you drag yourself to the cleaners to pick up your laundry, only to discover you’ve got the wrong bag—Star Spangled sequined thong, anyone? So Robyn is definitely not ready for the ridiculously gorgeous guy at her front door, except that they have each other’s clothes. But then, is any woman ever ready to meet the love of her life?

There’s just one problem: Zac Fallon is not the love of Robyn’s life. Zac knows, despite the all-too-intimate dinner they share, he doesn’t have a shot at her. Because the next time Zac sees Robyn, he’s front and center of the male revue headlining her best friend’s bachelorette party. So much for wooing the pretty schoolteacher, much less impressing her old-fashioned family, with his upstanding lifestyle. Now he’s only got one way to win his dream girl. It’s gonna be the steamiest, most irresistible seduction she’s ever seen. And this time it will be no act…

in review my thoughts

I can’t remember exactly where I discovered Stripped for the first time — it was either mentioned in a podcast or one of those “romances you should read” posts — but I’ve been intrigued since I read the blurb. Not to be all judgey, but strippers aren’t really my thing. I’ve gone to a couple shows, but been so ungodly uncomfortable that I’ve never really gotten into it. The idea of a stripper hero honestly never sounded all that appealing to me. (Same with porn star heroes, but I was proven very, very wrong with Lingus.) I knew I had to give it an honest shot just because it was something totally different. When I saw it pop up on Hoopla, I straight up did a little dance. I also wasted no time borrowing it and starting to listen. I’m so happy I did, too, because it was a great read.

I expected Stripped to be hot. I wasn’t wrong. But what I didn’t expect was the sweetness. Now, if I’m being totally honest, it took me a little while to get over my initial preconceived notions of strippers and see what kind of guy Fallon really was. (I sound so damn judgmental. But honesty, right?) He was a sweetheart. Yes, he had a past that wasn’t always rosy and he didn’t always make great choices. But, thankfully those behaviors went out the window once he met Robyn. Their meet cute with the mistaken laundry identity was fun and their story just got better the longer I read. (Or, well, listened.) Both Fallon and Robyn were interesting characters. I loved just how different they were. An elementary school teacher and a stripper! So unexpected, but so perfect.

Fallon and Robyn had great chemistry and their story was just flat out fun to read. The romance was totally swoony. It was smoking hot. The sexy times totally left me fanning myself. There were some great deeper scenes, too. So yes, Fallon and Robyn brought the feels. I loved that Fallon was unapologetic about his career. Why shouldn’t he be proud of pulling himself from where he grew up and making a good, honest living? I related to Robyn’s back-and-forth both about Fallon and her career. And I loved how Fallon helped her figure out what she really wanted when it came to both. They were super cute together and I couldn’t get enough of them.

Since I read devoured Stripped in audio, I have to say a little about the format. Carmen Vine is a new-to-me narrator, but I really liked her. Jacob Morgan, on the other hand, is an old favorite. Gah. He could read the dictionary and I’d be utterly entranced. I loved what their performances added to this story. It would’ve been satisfying either way, but I’m glad I chose to listen. For so many reasons. I love finding new authors and I definitely have my eye on Zoey Castile. I can’t wait to see what she gives us next. It’s safe to say the Happy Endings series is off to a strong start and I’ll be waiting with total grabby hands for the second book, Hired.

About Zoey Castile

Zoey Castile was born in Ecuador and raised in Queens, New York. She started writing in her teens and pursued that love in her studies at Hunter College and the University of Montana. For nearly a decade, she worked as a bartender, hostess, and manager in New York City's nightlife.

let's chat

Have you read any books where the hero — or heroine — was a stripper?
Any you’d recommend?

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