From the publisher:
Public radio co-hosts navigate mixed signals in Rachel Lynn Solomon’s sparkling romantic comedy debut.
Shay Goldstein has been a producer at her Seattle public radio station for nearly a decade, and she can’t imagine working anywhere else. But lately it’s been a constant clash between her and her newest colleague, Dominic Yun, who’s fresh off a journalism master’s program and convinced he knows everything about public radio.
When the struggling station needs a new concept, Shay proposes a show that her boss green-lights with excitement. On The Ex Talk, two exes will deliver relationship advice live, on air. Their boss decides Shay and Dominic are the perfect co-hosts, given how much they already despise each other. Neither loves the idea of lying to listeners, but it’s this or unemployment. Their audience gets invested fast, and it’s not long before The Ex Talk becomes a must-listen in Seattle and climbs podcast charts.
As the show gets bigger, so does their deception, especially when Shay and Dominic start to fall for each other. In an industry that values truth, getting caught could mean the end of more than just their careers.
Enemies to lovers. If that isn’t your thing, you can stop now. I happen to like that trope, and Solomon really ups the ante with the fact that these are journalists faking the news. Yep, you read that right. Now it’s not exactly news, but still it is public radio and there are definitely levels of expectation here of honesty. That is not delivered.
This radio station, like many public radio stations, struggles with financing. Layoffs are imminent and they need a hit show, something that get go national, to bring their station back from the brink. The Ex Talk seems like a really fun idea – get two exes to offer relationship advice. But instead of finding a couple post breakup, the the station manager decides that two of his producers would be great – they already hate each other.
Shay is proud of her work as a producer and never really tried to be an on air personality. Dominic is a bit of a know-it-all, fresh off his masters in journalism. They are constantly sniping at each other, which should make great radio and it does. The show takes off and is hugely popular. But then the unthinkable happens (at least to anyone who’s never read a romance) – they fall in love, fighting it every minute.
I really enjoyed this – lots of laughs and some smart dialogue, too.
5/2021 Stacy Alesi, AKA the BookBitch
THE EX TALK by Rachel Lynn Solomon. Berkley (January 26, 2021). ISBN: 978-0593200124. 352 pages.