Caro’s Review: Blind Kiss by Renee Carlino

Posted 2018-08-14 by Carolin Jache in Blog, Book Review, Release Day

Caro’s Review: Blind Kiss by Renee CarlinoBook: Blind Kiss by Renee Carlino
Follow the author: Website, Twitter, Facebook, Goodreads
Publisher: Atria Books on August 14th 2018
Purchase links: Amazon - iBooks - B&N - Google Books - Kobo - Audible - Add to Goodreads
Genres: Romance
Format: eARC - Source: Atria, Netgalley
Rating: four-stars

"A powerful story of two people who spend years denying their scientifically-proven chemistry.

Penny spends her afternoons sitting outside a sandwich shop, surrounded by ghosts. Fourteen years ago, this shop was her childhood dance studio... Now she’s a suburban housewife, dreading the moment her son departs for MIT, leaving her with [a] McMansion and a failing marriage. She had her chance at wild, stars-in-her-eyes happiness, but that was a lifetime ago. After The Kiss. Before The Decision.

The Kiss was soulful. Magical. Earth-shattering, And it was all for a free gift card. Asked to participate in a psych study that posed the question, “Can you have sexual chemistry without knowing what the other person looks like?” Penny agreed to be blindfolded, make polite conversation with a total stranger, and kiss him. She never expected The Kiss to change her life forever and introduce her to Gavin: tattooed, gorgeous, and spontaneous enough to ask her out seconds after the blindfolds came off.

For a year, they danced between friendship and romance—until Penny made The Decision that forced them to settle for friendship. Now, fourteen years later, both of their lives are about to radically change—and it’s his turn to decide what will become of their once-in-a-lifetime connection."

FTC Disclosure: We received this book/audiobook for free in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect our opinion of the book or the content of our review.

Book Review: 4 stars


It’s a tough task to explain how I felt about this book but not give anything away at the same time. Carlino is very good at describing emotions in a very raw, unmasked way. Her characters are always very special to me and she can do angst in spades.

“Blind kiss” is a tale of “what if” and “what could have been” in it’s purest form. I think there is a point in everybody’s life where we ask ourselves one or both of those questions. Sometimes the outcome is uplifting and we’re glad things are the way they are. Then there are the scenarios that devastate us with a possible outcome so much better than the actual one was. In Carlino’s new novel we get a very clear picture of two people trying to come to terms that if they’d have even taken one tiny step in another direction, blinked and looked away too fast, their fate might have been a whole different story. I’m only glad I’m not in their shoes.

There were times when I wanted to strangle the characters. Seriously, there is a fine line between good angst and angst for the benefit of angst. Yes, I’m aware that real life can throw you a curveball more often than not. But this whole story was the embodiment of heartache and unnecessarily caused angst. AND. That all resulted in a rushed ending.

I felt rather than enjoyed this story. The writing was excellent as always with Carlino. But I oftentimes felt the artificial drama was too much and my frustration too high. There were parts of the book that were 2 stars, then there were the rather 5 stars parts. So, I’ll settle on 4 stars in total.

My personal feelings here should not prevent anyone else to read this story, I think Carlino is too talented of an author not to read her stories.

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