by Helena Hunting
Narrated by Stella Bloom and Jason Clarke
Publication: May 10, 2022
Series: Spark House #2
**I was provided a copy of the book through NetGalley. I voluntarily read and reviewed it. All opinions are my own.**
Starry-Eyed Love is the second book in the Spark House series. After breaking up with her boyfriend, London gets hit on while having dinner with her sisters. The same guy who hit on her ends up sitting in on one of her business meetings, but she doesn’t immediately realize it’s him. While Jackson and London have sparks, their newly minted professional relationship makes it difficult for them to explore their growing attraction. The sisters continue to work together to operate Spark House together, but tensions increase as it begins to be more than the sisters can handle alone.
London Spark, the second sister, is the focus of this book. She played the mediator between Avery and their younger sister Harley in the first book, and we see that being a peacekeeper is a role she plays in much of her life. Being averse to conflict means she doesn’t always stand up for herself. Additionally, she often puts other people first, setting aside her desires. I found her extremely relatable because of her personality. Her anxiety and her tendency to overprepare connected with me as well as her discomfort with conflict.
I thought Jackson was a positive influence on London’s life. I loved how he pushed her outside her comfort zone and continually encouraged her to do things she loved as well. He didn’t flaunt his b/millionaire status but was willing to use his reach to help her. Additionally, I appreciated his transparency about pursuing her, and it made me like him even more.
The romance was somewhat slow, which is explained by their complicated business and personal relationships, and the narration was good–I was sick so listened to the audiobook for most of it and switched back after I started feeling better.. The book didn’t give me butterflies in my stomach like the first book’s friends-to-lovers romance with Avery and Declan. The conflicts were predictable, as has been the case for me with many of Hunting’s books. I don’t mind very much as long as it is done well, and it’s not too bad here.
The relationship between the sisters and their love for their business remains central to the story. While I liked Jackson and London together, the relationship between the sisters kept my attention much more. Understanding the business and their relationships first from Avery’s point of view and now having London’s perspective was very insightful, almost like an exercise in seeing the world through someone else’s shoe. With each sister’s perspective, I got a more rounded picture of their relationships and the complicated feelings around Spark House. As someone who often likes to try to understand the conflict from all sides, understanding the conflict over Spark House from multiple perspectives was one of my favorite aspects of the book. This is one of the strengths of the series. I am looking forward to seeing what Harley thinks of and feels toward her sisters.
Pick up Starry-Eyed Love, if you’re a fan of Helena Hunting. If you’re looking for a straightforward romance with compatible leads, this one is a good choice. Stella Bloom and Jason Clarke are excellent narrators. I would recommend the audiobook as well if you’d prefer to listen to it.
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