Author: Poppy Dunne
Release date: March 22, 2017
(Sub)genres: Contemporary Romance
Buy: Amazon US ~ Amazon UK
I received this book from the author in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
The first time I saw Will Munroe I had him pegged as a typical LA douchebag—a little too handsome, a little too rich, a little too into his probiotic kale smoothies.
The next time I ran into him—at his daughter’s parent/teacher conference (me: teacher, he: parent)—I noticed his steel grey eyes, his hard chest under a crisp white button down, and his suggestively bare ring finger. I was hooked.
If life really imitated art, he’d have swept me off my feet and taken me right there on the principal's desk. Instead, we are stuck in our assigned roles. He’s the workaholic single dad of a precocious girl child, and I’m her fiery substitute teacher. Never the two shall meet. Enter one zany, yurt-dwelling ex-wife, a stock market that never sleeps, and some over-the-top, A-list fundraisers, and I've got plenty of drama ahead. Better to keep my hands to myself.
But when Will asks me out for a pancake breakfast, how can I resist? My heart (and my stomach) say yes, but am I willing to risk my job for a short stack and a romp in the hay? A slow, sensual, mind-blowing romp in the hay…
But where there’s a Will…
One of my favorite sub-genres in the romance genre is the single parent category. I love to read about a parent who takes care of his/her kid(s) and finds new love. In Extra Credit by Poppy Dunne we have a single dad who falls for the drama teacher of his 10-year-old daughter. Add to that a bit crazy ex and a ‘special’ school and you have a funny, very enjoyable romantic comedy. I love it!
“Chelle.” That’s a rugged, masterful voice right next to me, and it’s being wielded by a rugged, masterful man. I feel like rugged, masterful should be directly under Will’s name on his business cards. Sorry, I’m mentally stalling for time.”
Chelle is a substitute teacher who teaches Drama at Bay of Dreams, an expensive elementary school for the rich and famous in Los Angeles. She does want a permanent position, but so far she hasn’t been offered a real job. Moving from place to place isn’t new to Chelle; as the daughter of clowns (yes, really, real clowns!) she has traveled the country with her parents and a lot of pets in a trailer. Since her life is busy enough as it is, and uncertain when it comes to her future, Chelle isn’t looking for a guy. The father of one of her students however is a bit difficult to resist…
“Hi. Chelle Richardson,” I say, giving him my hand for a firm, very collegial handshake. He takes my hand, which sends an unintentional flush through my body. Then, slowly, his eyes travel over me from head to toe, sending a much baser, much more fun flash of heat through me.”
Will is still settling into the life of a divorced parent. He and his ex-wife Suzonne didn’t work out, but since they’re still parents to their 10-year-old girl Amelia they have a lot of contact. Will has always been a workaholic; he loves his work and the money he makes with it, so he (and his family) can live comfortably. But the marriage didn’t survive all the hard working, and Suzonne’s passion for yoga, hippie and everything green didn’t help either. Chelle intrigues Will, she’s so different from what he knows, he just can’t stay away.
“I’ve never met a woman like that before in my life. Words and images are flashing through my mind, shoving into one another as I walk out of the room and try to get my thoughts in order. The nerve of some people. Red hair. Obstinate. Headstrong. Beyoncé. Dancing. Short. Sexy.”
After their first meeting Chelle and Will don’t exactly see eye to eye, but when they find out they have a common interest – Amelia – they try to get along. Chelle and Will have a lot of chemistry, but they don’t want to give into it. Chelle doesn’t want to bring her job in jeopardy, and the whole ‘Will has an ex-wife’ makes her a bit unsure. Will knows he wants Chelle, but he’s not sure how to handle the whole situation. However, this a romantic comedy… So of course Will and Chelle have their happily ever after. Their road is bumpy at times – otherwise it would have been to sweet – but they get there.
Extra Credit is my first book by Poppy Dunne. She’s still a new author (this book is only her second book), but I really like her writing. Chelle and Will are a great couple, I love how they are with each other, and with Amelia. Extra Credit is funny without being too over-the-top and it’s not all rainbows and sunshine. Chelle has a lot to figure out about her past and her future, and Will needs to find new grounds with his ex-wife. Towards the end I liked Suzonne, but there were moments I wanted to kick her green yoga butt… I’m all for doing what you want, but don’t force your lifestyle on your kid…
“Work Will has been balancing out better with Play Will, and Play Will is my favorite. That’s the Will who plays games with Amelia and me on Saturday nights, who takes me to my favorite spot on the beach at Point Dume. That’s the Will he’s wanted to be for a long time. That’s the Will I want to marry.”
I love the story of Will and Chelle, I give Extra Credit 4.5 stars.