Nikolai Leokov never thought he'd fall in love with the only girl he's ever befriended. Valentina Tomic has issues with commitment after the ultimate betrayal. When Tina decides to make broody Nik's day better, she never thought she would end up friends with the hard man. Nik has never had a woman be so affectionate to him without expecting something in return. Nik and Tina cordially invite you to listen to Friend-Zoned - a story of friendship, humor, and love.
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I hate weak female characters and this began with such promise, with an upbeat heroine who had been through a personal tragedy and yet somehow remained sunny and happy... But then it quickly changed into constant tears and weakness, with the hero having to literally pick her up and carry her every few minutes while she cries into his chest, which is tiresome.
Possibly the lowest point of the story is during a steamy make-out session when she actually bursts into tears because she sees his penis for the first time and thinks it is too large and won't fit... Seriously. It would be a stupid reaction from anyone, but for a woman who has supposedly already given birth to a baby?
And the hero is just as bad. Apparently feeling the need to take off his silk tie to clean her up after sex because the paper towels were too rough in the bathroom... Apparently in his bathroom there is no such thing as toilet paper...
Honestly, stuff like this is just so glaringly stupid it yanks you out of the story and prevents immersion. Better editing would have caught a lot of these things, I think.
My other problem with this story is that all the men are supposedly tough ex-gang members, but they neither act nor speak like men at all and their entire lives seem to revolve around the women and talking about their feelings constantly.
Soon after the women enter their lives they apparently no longer need guys' poker nights, or guys' nights out at the bar, their lives become all about the women, all the time.
I also found the listing of every outfit the girls wore tiresome, as though the story has to wait while we read excerpts from a catalogue or fashion magazine. Cut between these constant reminders of how stunning and sexy all the girls are (in case we're ever likely to forget), and the heroine continuously cooking the 'best food EVER' for her men, and it's like some kind of 1950's housewife fantasy.
I need a break after this and am listening to real crime podcasts. I will choose my next romance more carefully.
The narrator did well with some poor writing, but it was especially confusing when characters constantly repeated out loud the exact words they'd just thought, eg:
"What?!" I say...
This happens all the time. At first I thought I'd accidentally replayed a few seconds of audio, but it seems the author tried to use this kind of repetition for effect. These should all have been cut by a half decent editor.
No. There is not enough story for this to be turned into a film. Everyone would just be stood around talking about how much they like each other.
Could have been much better with help from a good editor.