For What It's Worth

Thursday, January 16, 2020

Review: Open House (Uptown #2) by Ruby lang


Love can take root where you least expect it.

Tyson Yang never imagined that one day he’d be the de facto spokesperson for an illegal community garden. But when the once-rat-infested-but-now-thriving Harlem lot goes up for sale, Ty can’t just let all their hard work get plowed under.


Even if he is irresistibly drawn to the lovely but infuriatingly stubborn real estate associate.


Magda Ferrer’s family is already convinced this new job will be yet another flop in her small but growing list of career path failures. But her student debt isn’t going anywhere, and selling her uncle’s historic town house and the lot nearby means a chance to get some breathing room.


Ty is her charming rival, her incorrigible nemesis, the handsome roadblock to her success.


Until one hot Harlem night blurs the hard line drawn between them, and the seeds of possibility in this rocky garden blossom into love… ~
Goodreads


Source: Purchased

Review:

I read a book!!! I read a book!!! I'm posting a review!!!

*flails*

I have NO idea what’s going on with me but I don’t feel like reading at all but this looked like a cute one to me and was recommended by Jen so I picked it up. Did it take me 2 weeks to read a short novella?? Yes. (no reflection on the book) But I read and enjoyed a book so I’ll take it!

Magda is trying (& failing) to succeed at yet another career. This time it’s real estate and she’s given two Harlem properties to sell. One is her uncle’s historic town home and the other is a vacant lot that has been transformed into a beautiful but illegal community garden run mostly buy local elderly residents, teens and one reluctant leader named Tyson.

Magda keeps hitting roadblocks. Her uncle is pressuring her to sell but keeps throwing up obstacles every time she gets close to finding a buyer while the community rallies together to try to halt the sale of the lot – led by Ty.

This is supposed to be enemies to lovers but Ty and Magda are so kind, soft and accommodating to each others needs once they start to get to know each other.

They are definitely on opposing sides and neither gives up on their mission – which I loved – but there was a lot of maturity and mutual respect happening that made me root for these two.

Lang managed to squeeze in several relevant topics in this one – student debt, gentrification, grief, and finding your own voice & place in the world – but managed to do it seamlessly. The supporting cast of characters like Magda’s uncle, Ty’s sister and fellow gardeners were a hoot.

If I have one tiny complaint, it would be that I wish I saw more of Magda and Ty in the future. Not even so much as a couple but to see where they end up now that they found their voices. Especially Magda who really struggled under the weight of her family and student debt. Is she still a real estate agent? Did she become a chef? – which seemed like her true calling. How the heck is Ty’s sister doing now? I loved her and was super sad she wasn’t getting her own book.

Very sweet, slow burn, low angst romance if that’s what your reading jam is!

21 comments:

  1. I read this book and the previous book, and I feel like both would have benefited from being full-length. I think of this series as socially conscience romance. Lang does blend it into the story well, though, and I really loved the community garden in this one.

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  2. lol you enthusiasm is contagious! So happy you read a book Karen! :) bye bye reading slump!

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    1. I've been reading about a book per week which is horrible for me but still a great pace.

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  3. Maybe your mojo is coming back :) You've had quite the year though so you deserve to give yourself a break and do what the mood calls to do.

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    1. I feel like I might NEVER get my full reading mojo back - like that level of reading is over but being happy picking up a few books a week would be nice lol

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  4. This sounds as though it definitely needed an epilogue to bring some closure to the storyline, I'm a reader who likes to see where a character ends up a few years beyond the storyline. It deals with a lot of relatable issues too. Hooray for reading! Glad to see you were able to relax with a great read Karen, wonderful review!

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    1. It was a great story and the romance/story arc wrapped up nicely but I felt like Magda was just getting started and wanted to know where she went with her passions.

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  5. Omg you read a book! Yay :D I got very excited by your excitement :)

    And it sounds cute to boot

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  6. Hurrah for reading a book and reviewing it too! It can be such a struggle just to do it sometimes and with Fonzi being sick and the house moves, I'm amazed you found time for anything over the last year!

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    1. It all zapped a surprising amount of mental energy. Even months later.

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  7. Yay! You read a book! And it sounds like it was a good one. I've had those times where I didn't feel like reading for a while.

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    1. It's been months! Which is no big deal except for the blog. I've got nothing lol

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  8. Is this a novella? It sounds super cute, and I love that they are both mature and it's not really a enemy style vibe. However, I think the not knowing where they are once things are hashed out would drive me nuts.

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    1. It is a novella. They have a very solid ending and the conflict is resolved but I felt like Magda especially had a lot of options for her future and I wanted to know where she ended up lol

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  9. Well done you on finishing a book! (That sounds sarcastic but it's sincere! I promise, lol)

    It sounds like a fun one. I often read novellas when my heads not up to reading anything lengthy or I've been struggling with a slump. I think they help. :)

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    1. This was the perfect, sweet, low angst book for my brain lol

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  10. YES for low angst romance! I can't stand it when contemporaries are unreasonably angsty. It's probably why I avoid a lot of them. This one does sound really cute. Congrats on finishing a book! I've only been finishing novellas lately too (other than audiobooks).

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    1. They definitely disagreed and had opposing goals but were very mature about the whole thing.

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  11. Novellas are such good things to read if you aren't quite in the mood for reading, and hey we all have those days! And I am glad you liked this sweet slow burn romance ^.^

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    1. Both characters were so awesome. And I love novellas!

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