Off the Record
Release Date: March 11, 2014
Genre: Adult, Contemporary Romance
Source: Purchased from Amazon for Kindle
Rating: 4.5 Bookworms
Liz Dougherty has no idea a single question is about to change her life.
Her first big reporting assignment for her North Caroline college newspaper has her covering a state senator's impromptu press conference. Brady Maxwell may have everything it takes to be a politician - a winning pedigree, devastating good looks, a body made to wear suits - but his politics rub Liz the wrong way. When Liz's hard-hitting question catches the upstart senator off-guard, it impresses Hayden Lane, Liz's editor who feels she's headed for a promising career as a reporter.
But Liz is also headed into a secret romance with Brady that could destroy both their ambitions. Though he's a bachelor, potential voters might frown on Brady cozying up to a reporter. And Liz isn't sure sneaking around is enough for her--especially when things between her and Hayden might be less platonic than she thought.
Sleek, sexy, and smart, Off the Record ventures into a high-stakes campaign and an even higher-stakes affair to answer the question: When politics and love collide, can there ever be a winner?
Wow! This book was rather stunning. I had a feeling it was going to be a worthwhile read but I had no idea how much I'd enjoy it or how much it'd affect me. This book is a romance but it's set around politics. That it takes place as a candidate is campaigning for a primary was fitting as it's relevant to our current political clime. The political environment - what a candidate endures and sacrifices - particularly one that is young and idealistic - made for stimulating reading.
The stage is set for sparks to fly when Liz Dougherty, a UNC journalism student with specific political ideals, covers the press conference where State Senator Brady Maxwell announces his intention to run for the US House of Representatives. See, Liz doesn't agree with Brady's voting record - on education, specifically - and fires a pretty scathing question at the Senator. It sets him off-balance and, of course, that's attractive to him.
What I loved about Liz and Brady:
1) Their chemistry was sizzlingly palpable
2) At the beginning, they were honest with one another - almost brutally so
3) They each gave up something of themselves in order to be with one another - it seemed like Brady didn't give up much but imagine having to hurt the one person you don't want to hurt in order to achieve a dream you aren't willing to give up
What I didn't like so much about Liz and Brady:
1) Brady expected more honesty from Liz than he was willing to give her - because he didn't want to upset her
2) Liz was always so brazen about sharing her political opinions with Brady but as her feelings grew, she became timid about sharing her emotions
3) Brady asked a lot of Liz by keeping their relationship secret - he set all the rules and everything was mostly done on his terms
4) They were each risking their careers to be together and they each believed it was worth keeping their relationship on the down-low
Linde did an excellent job in character development. Even though both Liz and Brady made decisions that had me shaking my head, I was in their corner, rooting for them. I can't imagine living in a world where the person I chose to date, or love, could threaten my career. But I know the ramifications for Brady and Liz - what they're risking. There are side characters who added drama, humor, and tension. I'm anxious to see the roles they play throughout Liz and Brady's story.
I'm thrilled to have read Off the Record! My dilemma now is that I want to finish their story. NOW. Hmm, good thing I have some birthday cash handy. *wink*