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Just Like This

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Rian Falwell has a problem. And his name is Damon Louis. Rian’s life as the art teacher to a gaggle of displaced boys at Albin Academy should be smooth sailing—until the stubborn, grouchy football coach comes into his world like a lightning strike and ignites a heated conflict that would leave them sworn enemies if not for a common goal. A student in peril. A troubling secret Rian Falwell has a problem. And his name is Damon Louis. Rian’s life as the art teacher to a gaggle of displaced boys at Albin Academy should be smooth sailing—until the stubborn, grouchy football coach comes into his world like a lightning strike and ignites a heated conflict that would leave them sworn enemies if not for a common goal. A student in peril. A troubling secret. And two men who are polar opposites but must work together to protect their charges. They shouldn’t want each other. They shouldn’t even like each other. Yet as they fight to save a young man from the edge, they discover more than they thought possible about each other—and about themselves. In the space between hatred, they find love. And the lives they have always wanted… Just like this.


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Rian Falwell has a problem. And his name is Damon Louis. Rian’s life as the art teacher to a gaggle of displaced boys at Albin Academy should be smooth sailing—until the stubborn, grouchy football coach comes into his world like a lightning strike and ignites a heated conflict that would leave them sworn enemies if not for a common goal. A student in peril. A troubling secret Rian Falwell has a problem. And his name is Damon Louis. Rian’s life as the art teacher to a gaggle of displaced boys at Albin Academy should be smooth sailing—until the stubborn, grouchy football coach comes into his world like a lightning strike and ignites a heated conflict that would leave them sworn enemies if not for a common goal. A student in peril. A troubling secret. And two men who are polar opposites but must work together to protect their charges. They shouldn’t want each other. They shouldn’t even like each other. Yet as they fight to save a young man from the edge, they discover more than they thought possible about each other—and about themselves. In the space between hatred, they find love. And the lives they have always wanted… Just like this.

30 review for Just Like This

  1. 4 out of 5

    * A Reader Obsessed *

    3 Hearts Taking place at the same exalted boarding school for mostly rich, privileged young boys as seen in Just Like That, this story now focuses on football coach Damon, and art teacher Rian. As per the blurb, when a mutual student seems to be going astray by not fulfilling academic and sport commitments, it brings these two complete opposites together, forcing them to work towards a common goal, each challenging and pushing buttons that incite and inflame. For McCade fans, don’t fret. This is s 3 Hearts Taking place at the same exalted boarding school for mostly rich, privileged young boys as seen in Just Like That, this story now focuses on football coach Damon, and art teacher Rian. As per the blurb, when a mutual student seems to be going astray by not fulfilling academic and sport commitments, it brings these two complete opposites together, forcing them to work towards a common goal, each challenging and pushing buttons that incite and inflame. For McCade fans, don’t fret. This is still wrought with an angsty push pull and an antagonistic back and forth, all with an inner turmoil to lend some heady gravitas. The interactions between Damon and Rian are wrought with personal fears and insecurity, and one step forward is annihilated by too much overthinking and misinterpretation of rashly said assumptions. Again, all the words add an atmospheric touch to the minutiae, heavy in the weight of hangups and baggage. However, my poor ferret brain has come to the conclusion that for now, this series is just not for me. Whether it’s the lush descriptions of these two’s physical attributes and reactions, their complex warring feelings, or the intimate joining they ultimately accomplish, this was too deconstructed into every single detail imaginable, testing my impatient self. I need to get to the nitty gritty, I need the story to be propelled forward, and it seemed like the verbosity and the too many self and externally imposed obstacles kept these two teachers on the sidelines watching and waiting for the other shoe to drop, not only in their romance, but with the student they were concerned with as well. Reassuringly, this is still well written and highly romantic (with a lovely epilogue) just like the first book. I’m confident many will find this an interesting enemies to lovers dynamic as each MC with their painful pasts and deep buried longings, slowly shed their preconceived notions of the other and make a connection. Again, I could appreciate this for what it was in all the descriptive nuances. If you crave that, if you enjoy it, then this is an absolute must. I’m just left unsure if this author’s other works can personally keep me captivated as much as I would like them to, because so far for me, less would’ve definitely been more. Thank you to the author/publisher for a copy in exchange for an honest review

  2. 5 out of 5

    Nicola

    4.5 stars. It’s back to Albin Academy for the second in a Cole McCade’s series of the same name, and having loved the first book I was looking forward to returning and seeing what lay in store for Rian and Damon—total opposites who join forces to discover why one of their students is giving the Scarlet Pimpernel a run for his money. Rian was the art teacher. Damon was the football coach. Something something something, never the twain shall meet.” Just Like This brought pretty much everything 4.5 stars. It’s back to Albin Academy for the second in a Cole McCade’s series of the same name, and having loved the first book I was looking forward to returning and seeing what lay in store for Rian and Damon—total opposites who join forces to discover why one of their students is giving the Scarlet Pimpernel a run for his money. Rian was the art teacher. Damon was the football coach. Something something something, never the twain shall meet.” Just Like This brought pretty much everything I’d hope for when I pick up a book by the author. His signature writing style and the soul-deep push-pull connection between his characters is at the forefront along with strong character backgrounds, and although for me it had an angstier feel than Just Like That that angst was real, focussing on real struggles and privilege but perfectly balanced with chemistry, banter and humour which inject a lighter easier-feel to Damon and Rian’s romance. …you didn’t find out about the dicks, did you?” If an engaging, character-driven slow-burn romance is what you’re after, then you‘ll not go far wrong here and as for the epilogue, well for any epilogue junkie it’s the thing dreams are made of. Copy received courtesy of Carina via NetGalley for an honest and unbiased opinion.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Trio

    Stunning! The characters in Cole McCade’s Albin Academy series are intricate and thoroughly developed; and these are some of the most interesting relationships I’ve ever read. Hurt/Comfort on an entirely different level, the romances are heartbreakingly beautiful and completely satisfying. This is only the second book I’ve read by Cole McCade, and I’ve got to say this author writes some smoking hot sex scenes! Like literally, almost too hot to read. Plus, I did the audio version, and Tim Todd Stunning! The characters in Cole McCade’s Albin Academy series are intricate and thoroughly developed; and these are some of the most interesting relationships I’ve ever read. Hurt/Comfort on an entirely different level, the romances are heartbreakingly beautiful and completely satisfying. This is only the second book I’ve read by Cole McCade, and I’ve got to say this author writes some smoking hot sex scenes! Like literally, almost too hot to read. Plus, I did the audio version, and Tim Todd gives an absolutely scintillating performance. There’s an interesting mystery in Just Like This and we get to know even more of the staff and students of Albin Academy. Cole McCade has created a fascinating community and I’m anxiously awaiting the next episode! a copy of Just Like This was provided by NetGalley for the purpose of my honest review

  4. 5 out of 5

    Bex (Beckie Bookworm)

    I’m loving this series so far it’s just so emotional and deep the author has such a way with language and though this is quite wordy and lyrical in tone it also provides all the deep feels. I’m not always a fan of overly prosy books but for some reason, it doesn’t bother me with this one and the words just resounded so deeply with me. And You do feel like you are dealing with some multi-faceted individuals with complex personalities, not cardboard cutouts or caricatures. This series definitely conc I’m loving this series so far it’s just so emotional and deep the author has such a way with language and though this is quite wordy and lyrical in tone it also provides all the deep feels. I’m not always a fan of overly prosy books but for some reason, it doesn’t bother me with this one and the words just resounded so deeply with me. And You do feel like you are dealing with some multi-faceted individuals with complex personalities, not cardboard cutouts or caricatures. This series definitely concentrates more on building the connection and then nurturing it until it’s developed fully and this is enemies to lovers and very well done slow-burn. In this second book in the series, we are dealing with the PE teacher Damon and the more flamboyant Art teacher Rian. These two are such complete opposites that at first glance they seem like they have very little in common but as we dig deeper it becomes apparent that though very different on the surface they are both equally as lost just in very different ways. Rian seems to have had it all, from a very affluent background and all of the advantages that money brings. This job is his first foray into being independent of his family. His sheltered and privileged upbringing has left him feeling rather worthless with little self-belief. He struggles with low self-esteem and how he is perceived by others this in turn means he is often over-eager to please and wears a mask that others may perceive as superficial and shallow. This is how Damon first perceives him that is until he digs below this outward displayed disguise to the complex individual beneath. And Damon though he loves his parents and has had a good childhood being adopted and also from a different racial culture than them has left him feeling disconnected because of this he often feels out of place and adrift. Rian also doesn’t at first see the true Damon seeing in him the brawny Jock when in fact he is so much more, he’s deep and very caring, a natural nurturer caring deeply about the boys in his care almost like a surrogate father. Two individuals from totally diverse backgrounds find an unexpected connection here when their goals align. Both concerned about a pupil under there care they take it upon themselves to dig deeper. The more time they spend in each other’s company the closer they become and they slowly realise they're not so different. Finding in each other something neither realised they were actually looking for. This was actually beautiful to read and exceptionally well written as I said earlier it’s enemies to lovers slow burn M/M and it’s very well done. I totally believed in the intense connection forming between Damon and Rian and was rooting for them every step of the way. They also had some incredible chemistry together and got to say that epilogue was the literal icing loved it so much. The simplicity of this story was part of its draw and I’m definitely loving this series a whole lot. I will definitely be reading the next one that’s for sure. I voluntary reviewed a copy of Just like this (Albin Academy #2) Reviewed By Beckie Bookworm https://www.facebook.com/beckiebookworm/ www.beckiebookworm.com

  5. 5 out of 5

    Chris C - A Midlife Wife

    The story truly is amazing. The story of deep profound love and belonging. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ This author truly has a beautiful gift with his ability to write romance that just grabs you deep in your soul. It surprises me that he has this ability as a guy. Not that men cannot write romance, but this, this is something different! Honestly. You can tell this story is right from his soul and he is laying out his feelings in this book. It’s not just a romance. This is a story of a deeply passionate co The story truly is amazing. The story of deep profound love and belonging. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ This author truly has a beautiful gift with his ability to write romance that just grabs you deep in your soul. It surprises me that he has this ability as a guy. Not that men cannot write romance, but this, this is something different! Honestly. You can tell this story is right from his soul and he is laying out his feelings in this book. It’s not just a romance. This is a story of a deeply passionate connection that one cannot comprehend. The story is about two people who are as opposite as you could imagine and the way the author is able to bring this fiery connection together is pretty amazing. The characters think this connection is gonna rip their guts out and blow up in their face so the push and pull are evident throughout the story. Rian is not the normal type of character I would care for and he has many attributes that just annoyed me. He was always protecting himself and shielding his heart to a fault. Damon is the hunky football coach with muscles galore and one that just overwhelms room but yet he can be gentle and delicate once you realize that he too is protecting in his heart. Once these two come together, steamy and beautiful things start to happen that make the heart sing. We get an amazing epilogue that is just so story-worthy. It’s rare in a book like this to get a decent epilogue. It makes me happy to see how they blossomed and grew together. The story is an emotionally deep and intense look at people who protect themselves and their hearts so much it’s like taking a chisel to try to find who they really are. With passion, fire, and sizzling, passionate scenes unlike any you’ve read before, this is an author and a story that you will not forget. Book one is just as amazing. Don’t miss it! * Copy received for review consideration Full review - https://amidlifewife.com/just-like-th...

  6. 5 out of 5

    mina reads™️

    Just Like This is about an art teacher, Rian and a gym teacher, Damon who work a private boarding school. They have a mutual student who seems to be hiding something and the two teachers have to work together to find out what's plaguing this student and how to help while also clashing with each other over any and every little thing. To me this story was a bit overwrought, i understand that flowery language is simply a staple of Cole Mccade's writing but I really did feel like the excessive descr Just Like This is about an art teacher, Rian and a gym teacher, Damon who work a private boarding school. They have a mutual student who seems to be hiding something and the two teachers have to work together to find out what's plaguing this student and how to help while also clashing with each other over any and every little thing. To me this story was a bit overwrought, i understand that flowery language is simply a staple of Cole Mccade's writing but I really did feel like the excessive descriptions and metaphors for the characters every little emotion was really frustrating and it made this story quite difficult to get into initially. Additionally I think that while the story was almost overly descriptive in the angsty emotional aspect, it was not at all descriptive in terms of the setting which in my opinion was a little bit disappointing because I was looking forward to the atmospheric prestigious private school setting. One more negative to the intense angsty and introspective nature of the story is that I felt like the two leads honestly didn't have that much chemistry really. The story took a long time to sell me on the supposed fiery spark between the two because most of the first 30 or so percent is intensely interior and the interactions between the characters didn't feel that interesting or substantial for them to be having all these big emotions about one another. On a more positive note, the writing is quite beautiful if a bit distracting at times so if intense description and angst are your thing this really might work for you. I did enjoy some of the more lighthearted scenes between these teachers and their students, it was sweet to see how much they cared for them, and I enjoyed the brief look into Damon's backstory as an Indigenous adoptee who feels disconnected from his people and his culture due to being raised by his white family. I think this was the first time I've read about an indigenous hero in a romance so I definitely appreciated that alot. As the story went on I did begin to enjoy the couple more and I think the book excelled when the writing stopped being so intentionally purple prosey and focused more on character interaction. Damon and Rian were quite sweet together. Also the epilogue was so adorable and I loved it. On the whole I enjoyed it well enough in the end but it's definitely not a new favorite Cole McCade for me 3.5 stars Thank you Carina Press for the arc via netgalley in exchange for an honest review

  7. 5 out of 5

    Mariah

    2.5 ARC provided by the publisher via NetGalley. Another sucessful Opposites Attract from Cole McCade. Honestly, if his name is on it, I'll read it. In this one, we're back in Albin Academy, an all boys boarding school in Omen, Massachusetts, where the rich and powerful send their sons to forget they exist for a while. This is the story of the hippie art teacher and the football coach and it delivers exactly what it sets out to do. I was touched by not only Rian and Damon's relationship but also by t 2.5 ARC provided by the publisher via NetGalley. Another sucessful Opposites Attract from Cole McCade. Honestly, if his name is on it, I'll read it. In this one, we're back in Albin Academy, an all boys boarding school in Omen, Massachusetts, where the rich and powerful send their sons to forget they exist for a while. This is the story of the hippie art teacher and the football coach and it delivers exactly what it sets out to do. I was touched by not only Rian and Damon's relationship but also by their afftection for their students. Having lived in one such campus myself, I know how important a role teachers and coaches play on these kids' lives and I'm so glad it was part of the narrative.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Caz

    I've given this a B at AAR. This second book in Cole McCade’s series set at Albin Academy, a prestigious New England boarding school where wealthy parents send their (often) problematic sons in order to forget about them, is an antagonists-to-lovers story between the school’s football coach and its art teacher, a couple who couldn’t be more different if they tried.  Just Like This finds this chalk-and-cheese couple reluctantly working together to help one of their students, and although it’s as i I've given this a B at AAR. This second book in Cole McCade’s series set at Albin Academy, a prestigious New England boarding school where wealthy parents send their (often) problematic sons in order to forget about them, is an antagonists-to-lovers story between the school’s football coach and its art teacher, a couple who couldn’t be more different if they tried.  Just Like This finds this chalk-and-cheese couple reluctantly working together to help one of their students, and although it’s as insightful and beautifully written as the previous instalment, the writing can be overly detailed and a little florid, and the pacing really slows around the middle section of the book. Art master Rian Falwell is surprised – to say the least – when the school’s PE teacher, Damon Louis appears in his studio demanding to know why one of his football players keeps missing practice.  Rian is at a complete loss –  and not a little bit annoyed at the other man’s rude, overbearing manner-  until finally, Damon comes to the point; his star player, sixteen-year-old Chris Northcote, has repeatedly been late to practice because he’s been staying in art class after school, and for the last week, he hasn’t turned up at all.  Damon demands to know why Rian is making Chris stay behind, his accusatory tone completely ruffling Rian’s feathers the wrong way.  When Rian coolly – and somewhat snootily – explains that he’s doing nothing of the sort and that Chris gets out of his class as soon as possible saying he’s got football practice, Rian and Damon realise the boy has been lying to both of them – and that given he’s the sort of kid who’s doing well in school, is well-liked and never in trouble, he must be lying for what he thinks is a good reason.  Which meant, in every mind except that of a desperate sixteen-year-old, it was probably a pretty fucking bad reason. They go to see Assistant Principal Walden to express their concerns, and are frustrated at his response that as Chris isn’t failing in class or breaking any rules, there is little they can do, and by his instruction not to contact the boy’s parents unless they have very good reason to do so.  Appalled by such a heartless response, Rian and Damon decide to take it upon themselves to try to find out what’s going on. That’s the basic plotline and the impetus for the romance between Rian and Damon. They’re interesting, complex characters who come from very different backgrounds, have very different life experiences and yet, as they spend time together and get to know each other better, realise they’re both looking for the same thing, somewhere to belong and to feel loved and valued. Rian comes from money and has never really had to work for anything or do anything for himself. He’s a talented artist and felt suffocated by his family, as if he was only important to them as something pretty to be shown off and exhibited, so a few years earlier he decided enough was enough and struck out on his own when he took the job at Albin. He’s determined to stand on his own two feet and prove he’s worth something other than his or his parents’ bank balance, which sometimes causes him to try overly hard to do things for people and fix things. Damon is an adoptee of Indigenous descent, but knows nothing about his birth-parents or which nation he descends from, which leaves him in an uncomfortable limbo, feeling disconnected from his heritage. I loved watching them gradually shedding their preconceptions about each other and finding that common ground. I was completely hooked for around the first third of the book; I wanted to know what was going on with Chris, and the chemistry and the push-and-pull between the two leads is intense and really well done. Their frustration and attraction (and frustrated attraction;)) bubbles so close to the surface that their first kiss is explosive, like the lid blowing off a pressure cooker! But things start to slow down not long after this, and the story begins to meander a bit; there isn’t a lot of progression in the Chris storyline and the back and forth I’d enjoyed at the beginning morphs into a kind of stalemate as Rian and Damon start to put obstacles in the way of their having an actual relationship. The conflict here is wholly internalised and stems mostly from preconceptions and misconceptions – and a pronounced lack of communication. Things pick up again around the three-quarter mark though, and both the plot and the romance are propelled towards a satisfying conclusion. I argued with myself over the final grade because while I really liked the plot, the characterisation and the romance, the pacing issues and the (sometimes) overly detailed internal descriptions got in the way of the story and slowed its forward momentum. Ultimately however, Just Like This deserves a recommendation, because in spite of my reservations, I did enjoy this story of two strangers brought together by a common goal who find love and home and the lives they’ve always wanted.

  9. 5 out of 5

    True Loveislovereview

    This author is a word musician. I love this way of storytelling, it elevates a narrative above an average level, composing all the little and big parts into a beautiful flowed symphony. There is never just a simple romance, there are always unexpected layers. “Rian Falwell has a problem. And his name is Damon Louis.” Isn’t that a fact! So, this story is about Rian the art teacher who got a degree in fake smiles, never learned to socialize, and Damon the football coach, who despises fake smiles, bo This author is a word musician. I love this way of storytelling, it elevates a narrative above an average level, composing all the little and big parts into a beautiful flowed symphony. There is never just a simple romance, there are always unexpected layers. “Rian Falwell has a problem. And his name is Damon Louis.” Isn’t that a fact! So, this story is about Rian the art teacher who got a degree in fake smiles, never learned to socialize, and Damon the football coach, who despises fake smiles, both work at the Albin Academy. They don’t like each other but have to work together to help a student who ditched classes and looks more and more exhausted. Unraveling Rian was mesmerizing, the journey of discovering the adopted Damon and his history was as mesmerizing and palpable Two souls finding a belonging, dang that was breathtaking. They don’t just make love, they created art. The whispers, the murmurs, the little gestures were *gasp* impressive. Belonging... oh my heart, the yearning so palpable. Beautifully written journey, all those impressive sentences, this author excels here. The characters are excellently developed, the plot is well thought out! What is a beautiful love story without a hea, don’t worry it has a very satisfying happy ending. “But if you try sometimes …you might just get what you need.”

  10. 4 out of 5

    Santy

    3.5 Stars!! One thing I've come to expect when ever I pick up a Cole McCade book is great storytelling and impeccable writing and this was more of the same. I'm always blown away by how he weaves his tales and how he uses the english language to tell you exactly how his characters are feeling and exactly how the situation unravels within his stories. That is what I particularly love about this author and exactly what I loved about this book. So why the 3.5-star rating? That just boils down t 3.5 Stars!! One thing I've come to expect when ever I pick up a Cole McCade book is great storytelling and impeccable writing and this was more of the same. I'm always blown away by how he weaves his tales and how he uses the english language to tell you exactly how his characters are feeling and exactly how the situation unravels within his stories. That is what I particularly love about this author and exactly what I loved about this book. So why the 3.5-star rating? That just boils down to two things I didn't particularly care for in this story; the pacing and the push and pull between Rian and Damon. The writing, as I've already indicated was great but somewhere in the middle of this book, the story began to slow down a bit primarily because there wasn't much movement with the "troubled student" subplot and the MCs' constant pushing and pulling only served to drag the story even further. However, once Rian and Damon got over themselves, the story moved right along and concluded quite satisfactorily. I really enjoyed the Epilogue as well. I'm not sure if there will be additional books in the series but if any do come out, you can bet I'll be reading it!! **eARC Graciously Provided by Publisher via Netgalley in Exchange for an Honest, Unbiased Review**

  11. 5 out of 5

    Joyfully Jay

    A Joyfully Jay review. 4.5 stars Book one of the Albin Academy series, Just Like That, was amazing, and that is the reason I jumped on the opportunity to read book two, Just Like This. The whole boarding school aspect of the stories fascinates me. The men are in a sort of enclosed environment. Their options are limited, and they must rely on each other. The situations felt real, especially in this installment. Teachers always express concern for troubled students, and they feel responsibility for A Joyfully Jay review. 4.5 stars Book one of the Albin Academy series, Just Like That, was amazing, and that is the reason I jumped on the opportunity to read book two, Just Like This. The whole boarding school aspect of the stories fascinates me. The men are in a sort of enclosed environment. Their options are limited, and they must rely on each other. The situations felt real, especially in this installment. Teachers always express concern for troubled students, and they feel responsibility for them. Here, even though Rian and Damon don’t get along, that concern and responsibility is more important than their personal feelings. I loved both Rian and Damon. They were fundamentally good men, even though they grew up in extraordinary situations: Rian in a wealthy home where he felt like he didn’t belong, and Damon in a loving home where he wasn’t sure who he truly was. Their chemistry was off the charts, once again, even though their personalities clashed. Read Kenna’s review in its entirety here.

  12. 5 out of 5

    haletostilinski

    4.25 stars! Overall, I enjoyed this second installment in this series. This second installment focuses on Rian Falwell and Damon Louis, the art teacher and gym teacher/coach at Albin Academy respectively. What starts as a somewhat antagonistic relationship between the two at the start, when both are lied to by a student, Chris, and think he's in the other's classroom/football practice, and it takes awhile for that animosity to cool, even as they are attracted to each other and build a connection. 4.25 stars! Overall, I enjoyed this second installment in this series. This second installment focuses on Rian Falwell and Damon Louis, the art teacher and gym teacher/coach at Albin Academy respectively. What starts as a somewhat antagonistic relationship between the two at the start, when both are lied to by a student, Chris, and think he's in the other's classroom/football practice, and it takes awhile for that animosity to cool, even as they are attracted to each other and build a connection. But the student, Chris, is hiding something, as he's not coming to practice and he skips out as fast as he can at the end of the day from Rian's art class, but when Rian and Damon go to Walden, the Assistant Principal about it, he isn't very helpful, and they're left with the only option, which is try to suss out what is going on from peers around Chris, because asking Chris right out what is going on might scare him off. For me, I felt like the situation with Chris was a great way for these two to come together, but I'm not so sure that I liked that the storyline spanned basically the whole book. I liked Chris and all, so it wasn't that, and it was great seeing these two care so much for him as a student and all that, but ultimately I feel that after awhile it kinda took away from these two and their story. What I mean is, there wasn't much of a storyline outside of the Chris situation and I don't think it worked entirely well as an overall plot... Now when it was just these two together, I loved it, I adored it, they had a great connection - even if at first it felt a tad out of nowhere. I mean they worked for three years together and barely talked and then one encounter and there's attraction? Maybe if it had been a more gradual thing, it would have felt a little more believable to me? - but either way, once we got into them and their feelings really started to grow, they were great together and I enjoyed them together. But when, aside from their growing relationship, the only thing that happened was about Chris the whole time? I dunno, I just didn't connect with that. It being this great mystery for them to solve by the end and all that. I think the Chris thing could have been solved by at least halfway through and then this could have focused on something else, something more to do with Damon and Rian themselves, not just a student they have. I don't know, it wasn't bad, and I did like Chris, who was a sweet kid in over his head, but the story isn't about Chris...it's about Damon and Rian, you know? So I would have just liked that storyline to have moved on. Not to say it was bad, because there were good moments that came out of it, I just don't think it warranted being the main storyline. But overall, this was enjoyable and I do recommend it. These two were good together, even when they were snapping at each other, and I adored Rian, he was just a sweet guy. So I definitely recommend. McCade is an amazing author who writes beautiful and writes great relationships. I just think in some ways - i.e. the plot - this could have been better. But still a very good read. Two thumbs up from me! :) ***ARC generously provided by Netgalley in exchange for an honest review***

  13. 5 out of 5

    destiny ♡⚔♡ [howling libraries]

    #1 Just Like That ★★★★★ #2 Just Like This #1 Just Like That ★★★★★ #2 Just Like This

  14. 4 out of 5

    Minnie

    2,5 I love Cole McCade but I think this series isn't for me. The first book was also a so-so reading experience for me and I was honestly a little annoyed with the second. It's one of these books were the story would be a lot faster over if our main protagonists Rian and Damon had just talked to each other instead of ignoring. I really hate that in books so I can't give it a very high rating. Rian and Damon, two teachers at the Albin Academy private school for spoiled rich boys, need to overcome 2,5 I love Cole McCade but I think this series isn't for me. The first book was also a so-so reading experience for me and I was honestly a little annoyed with the second. It's one of these books were the story would be a lot faster over if our main protagonists Rian and Damon had just talked to each other instead of ignoring. I really hate that in books so I can't give it a very high rating. Rian and Damon, two teachers at the Albin Academy private school for spoiled rich boys, need to overcome their distaste for each other to help out a pupil who seems to be in danger. It sounded great but it was overall a little over the top for me. I've seen a lot of reviews complaining about McCade flowery writing style but I actually finished it because of it. And the reason why the kid Chris was so secretive and made a lot of trouble was so unsatisfying to me that I thought about dropping the series as a whole. I need to see which characters are the next couple to decide it. I really hope it's Walden and Dr. Liu.

  15. 4 out of 5

    -ˏˋclaraˊˎ-

    3.5 ⭐ stars rounded up. Damon and Rian live in the prestigious Albin Academy, known to be the school where the sons of rich families are sent, left to be almost forgotten by their negligent parents. Damon is the coach of the football team, and Rian is the art teacher, and they've never had a reason to interact up to this point. When a student they have in common starts to behave strangely, Rian and Damon find themselves tangled with each other, and even if they hate to admit it, there's an undeni 3.5 ⭐ stars rounded up. Damon and Rian live in the prestigious Albin Academy, known to be the school where the sons of rich families are sent, left to be almost forgotten by their negligent parents. Damon is the coach of the football team, and Rian is the art teacher, and they've never had a reason to interact up to this point. When a student they have in common starts to behave strangely, Rian and Damon find themselves tangled with each other, and even if they hate to admit it, there's an undeniable attraction between them that they cannot fight. This book was a pleasant surprise. Damon and Rian were absolutely adorable and I enjoyed their bickering more than I'd expected. At first, I wasn't sure if I'd be able to love their relationship given that it was definitely insta-lovey, something that usually turns me off inmediately. Somehow, the chemistry between the characters was enough to get me hooked and giggling most of the time, even though the romance was quite angsty —in the best way possible. The whole situation with Chris was really endearing as well. I love the concept of found family and being emotionally attached to people you aren't related to by blood, but by a strong, trustful bond. My only complaint regarding this matter was that I didn't feel like we got to see much of that relationship prior to the incident. We are told that this boy means a lot to both men, and we somehow get to see that when Damon is training with the football team —but this is not the case with Rian. His relationship with Chris was not as developed and I wish it had been. My biggest issue with this book, actually, was the writing style. I wouldn't call it bad, but it just was not for me. It felt choppy and too repetitive. I get that maybe the author's intentions were to highlight the characters' feelings, especially their fears and struggles when it came to each other, but the execution felt too over-the-top. The own-voices aspect of this book was incredible. I really liked it, every aspect. I haven't found many books with indigenous characters —or written by indigeous authors, and it's definitely something I'd like to do. Now I really want to read the previous book in this series, and I'll be on the lookout for more of Cole McCade's works. Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for providing me with a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. will I ever stop requesting sequels to books I haven't read yet 🤦

  16. 4 out of 5

    Yna the Mood Reader

    "What was it like, to want someone that deeply that the thread connecting the two of you was nearly visible?" 📚 Series? Yes, 2nd but can be read as a standalone. 📚 Genre? LGBT Contemporary Romance. 📚 Read for? Carina Press Tours x #NetgalleyNovember 30 Day Review Challenge 📚 Cliffhanger? No. I'm so happy that I was given the chance by Carina Press to jump into Just Like This after reading its first installment earlier this year. Frankly, the author's writing style is something I enjoy, "What was it like, to want someone that deeply that the thread connecting the two of you was nearly visible?" 📚 Series? Yes, 2nd but can be read as a standalone. 📚 Genre? LGBT Contemporary Romance. 📚 Read for? Carina Press Tours x #NetgalleyNovember 30 Day Review Challenge 📚 Cliffhanger? No. I'm so happy that I was given the chance by Carina Press to jump into Just Like This after reading its first installment earlier this year. Frankly, the author's writing style is something I enjoy, so I was so excited that this series continues on. Just Like This still revolves around Albin Academy, this time telling the relationship of the art teacher and the football coach. It's a type of an opposites attract relationship and I loved how slow burning the book's flow was. The tension is sizzling and the build up was so good. I love being caught inside their minds.. it's was truly an awesome experience to see the push and pull between these two hesitant lovers. If you're a fan of angsty things, you'll enjoy this read, as both our leads have gone through shitty things in life that made them more careful or guarded at their adulthood. There are social class discussions, especially about wealth and privilege. But the deep parts are balanced out by banter, fun, and some steamy scenes, too. All in all, this story was able to deliver passion and that epilogue is so special to me! I just loved the entire experience! Giving this book all the stars! ☁ THE CRITERIA ☁ 🌼 Blurb:⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ 🌼 Main Character:⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ 🌼 Significant Other: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ 🌼 Support Characters:⭐⭐⭐⭐☆ 🌼 Writing Style:⭐⭐⭐⭐☆ 🌼 Character Development:⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ 🌼 Romance: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ 🌼 Pacing: ⭐⭐⭐⭐☆ 🌼 Ending: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ 🌼 Unputdownability: ⭐⭐⭐⭐☆ 🌼 Book Cover:⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ ☁FINAL VERDICT: 4.64/5 ☁ Much thanks to Netgalley and Carina Press for this complimentary copy. This review is voluntary and opinions are fully my own. Also, all quotes are taken from the ARC and may be different in the final published copy. 📚 Blog ♡ Booktube ♡ Bookstagram ♡ Facebook ♡ Twitter 📚

  17. 5 out of 5

    Terri Jones

    This review is for the NetGalley ARC: I liked this one better than the first one, particularly how all the moving parts fit together the way they only ever do in fiction. *sigh* The prose is typical Cole McCade. This school is in a pocket universe that I particularly appreciate in 2020, but it does connect with McCade's larger 'universe' -- you'll recognize a name if you've read Criminal Intentions. This is now my favorite enemies to lovers trope romance. <3 This review is for the NetGalley ARC: I liked this one better than the first one, particularly how all the moving parts fit together the way they only ever do in fiction. *sigh* The prose is typical Cole McCade. This school is in a pocket universe that I particularly appreciate in 2020, but it does connect with McCade's larger 'universe' -- you'll recognize a name if you've read Criminal Intentions. This is now my favorite enemies to lovers trope romance. <3

  18. 4 out of 5

    WTF Are You Reading?

    Just Like This could best be described as a tentative love/hate romance. Because while there is a definite adversarial bent to the tensions between Damon and Rian. Their interactions can best be described as charged but wary. Almost like they were waiting each other out during a chess game. Even more compelling than the seeming "stalemate of wills" between the two, that seems to be going on throughout the first half of the story. Is the way that each of their backstories work in concert with both Just Like This could best be described as a tentative love/hate romance. Because while there is a definite adversarial bent to the tensions between Damon and Rian. Their interactions can best be described as charged but wary. Almost like they were waiting each other out during a chess game. Even more compelling than the seeming "stalemate of wills" between the two, that seems to be going on throughout the first half of the story. Is the way that each of their backstories work in concert with both each other, and that of the present story of their shared charge. Giving each man a truly "lost boy found" persona. And setting the stage for their emotionally charged romance. Speaking of personas. A big bravo to author Cole McCade. For his crafting of a more classically styled effeminate lead in the form of Rian. It is not often that softer male roles are highlighted in such positive and face forward fashion. That still manages to honor his masculinity in the process. In short. This book is a very well written up close and personal view of two men brought together in the pursuit of a goal greater than themselves. Only to find within each other, a love greater than any they have ever known. Reviewer's Note *Thank you to Carina Press and Net Galley for the provision of the review copy of this work on which my honest critique is based. Just Like This is the second book of the Albin Academy series. But may be read as a standalone.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Cam

    I don't know why, but it took me a long time to get through this book. There is a lot of teen angst for men in their 30s, and even though I liked the characters (Yeah!!! M/M (maybe better to say M/NB) fic about teachers!!! We need more of these), it just. . . felt like everything was really drawn out--like the thing keeping these two characters apart seemed forced (maybe). I don't know why, but it took me a long time to get through this book. There is a lot of teen angst for men in their 30s, and even though I liked the characters (Yeah!!! M/M (maybe better to say M/NB) fic about teachers!!! We need more of these), it just. . . felt like everything was really drawn out--like the thing keeping these two characters apart seemed forced (maybe).

  20. 5 out of 5

    Jenn

    3.5 stars Just Like This is our second installment in the Albin Academy by Cole McCade. Rian Falwell the art and dance teacher at Albin Academy comes face-to-face with the gym teacher and football coach Damon Louis when a mutual student starts sliding in football practice attendance, a mandated part of his scholarship. It soon becomes clear that the student has been playing the two teachers off on each other with lame excuses. Clearing up this issue should be easy enough but Albin Academy is a pri 3.5 stars Just Like This is our second installment in the Albin Academy by Cole McCade. Rian Falwell the art and dance teacher at Albin Academy comes face-to-face with the gym teacher and football coach Damon Louis when a mutual student starts sliding in football practice attendance, a mandated part of his scholarship. It soon becomes clear that the student has been playing the two teachers off on each other with lame excuses. Clearing up this issue should be easy enough but Albin Academy is a private school where children are sent by their rich parents to be forgotten. Until Rian and Damn have concrete proof something legitimately wrong or against the school rules is actually going on, his parents and even the student himself should be left out of it. To top off the tangled web of the school administration's decree, Rian and Damon can't help the wrenching antagonism that occurs during each and every one of their encounters. The two teachers agree to work together to help solve the mystery of what is going on with their student and provide support (or protection) if needed. But each interaction leaves them both feeling raw, and challenged, and vulnerable. Will they be able to get over their own issues to finds and help their student with his own? I will preface my review by saying I have not read the first book in the series, Just Like That. I do feel that I lost some context and deeper meaning with backstories and character overlap, so... I will recommend that readers read the series in order. Overall, this book could be a stand-alone BUT, again, I felt I was missing a small piece of the puzzle. For fans of angsty push/pull, this will be right up your alley. Rian came from a very elite white upper-crust family that allowed for him to be handed many things. However, Rian, as he grew up, decided being handed things was not as fulfilling as earning your accolades. Further that Rian had a bad habit of constantly trying to "fix" all his partners, well he came away with quite the angsty chip on his shoulder that he was working off in solitude at the Academy. Damon was adopted (and from what I could gather was he was) from the nearby indigenous tribe but he feels left out from the indigenous culture and felt abandoned by his tribal people. He has loving adopted parents and he feels disloyal to want to be part of his birth tribe. The total collective baggage these two came with was quite the haul. (Oy, the angst and fear of love and being understood.) Rian and Damon were like flint and fuel... they sparked against one another but they were scared of everything that the impending fire could create. While, I enjoy working through issues together in a coupledom and working past hang-ups, and growing both together and individually, I felt like a lot of the interactions were maybe overly complicated? The author writes beautifully and the layered intrigue on each page was definitely apparent. I, however, found the constant flowery, flowy descriptiveness maybe a bit verbose at times. I had a difficult time fully getting a feel for the characters and their motivations as sometimes their language and internal thoughts were so over the top?? Further, while the descriptiveness was there and the writing evoked an airiness to the writing, I didn't particularly feel the chemistry between Rian and Damon. Nor did I really think that BOTH characters should both have such descriptive inner monologues. (What do I know. I can hardly write a story any better than my 10-year-old.) Little safety brigade comment here: I was a little disappointed we didn't have even a flicker of discussion about protection or the lack thereof nor preferences. But. That is my hang up and by no means telling the author what to do. Overall, Just Like This is a beautifully written story about two seemingly opposite people coming together to help a student and find the missing parts of themselves in each other. The epilogue was heartwarming. I am curious as to where the series will go next (after I go read Just Like That). *ARC provided by NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.* 

  21. 5 out of 5

    Jaime

    1) Just Like That ★★★★½ content warnings: discussions of bullying, violence and the unlawful kidnapping of Indigenous children representation: gay protagonist, gay Indigenous protagonist, main m/m romance, side gay characters “Some things just had to be dealt with. And Rian Falwell was apparently one of them.” When I read Cole McCade's Just Like That earlier this year, I was blown away by how much I loved it so I had high expectations going into the sequel, which thankfully did not disappoint. T 1) Just Like That ★★★★½ content warnings: discussions of bullying, violence and the unlawful kidnapping of Indigenous children representation: gay protagonist, gay Indigenous protagonist, main m/m romance, side gay characters “Some things just had to be dealt with. And Rian Falwell was apparently one of them.” When I read Cole McCade's Just Like That earlier this year, I was blown away by how much I loved it so I had high expectations going into the sequel, which thankfully did not disappoint. Taking place once again at Albin Academy, Just Like This follows Rian Falwell and Damon Louis, an art teacher and football coach respectively, who realise that a mutual student of theirs, Chris, has been lying to both of them about where he is when he's supposed to be at football practice. Out of concern for Chris, the two teachers decide to put aside their mutual dislike in an attempt to figure out what's going on with him. Romance, of course, ensues. I love how invested McCade is in the world of this series. It would be easy to just make Albin the setting and not do much with it, but so much of the book centres on the complicated politics of this school where rich parents send their troublesome sons and what that entails. With the two perspectives being Rian and Damon, this is explored from two different angles and makes for honestly a fascinating read if you, like me, find the strange lives of rich people weirdly compelling. But you don't want to hear about the politics of an academy for rich boys; you want to hear about the romance. Oh, the romance is so good. I'm obsessed with the way Cole McCade structures his romances like a Nancy Meyers movie, with the leads getting together halfway through the story and then figuring out how to be together. This has the added flavour of being a very soft enemies to lovers, which we all know I'm a sucker for, so that's a nice bonus. Because of the way the story is structured, you get to spend the first half or so with Rian and Damon before they get together and then the next half with them as a couple, which gives you enough time to understand them as individuals before understanding them as a couple. If I had my way, most romances would play out like this. Outside of the romance, I also really enjoyed the mystery subplot about Chris. It deepens the characters because you see how they react to the situation and their reasons for it, but it's also just really damn compelling. Without giving too much away, I definitely didn't guess where it was going to go and loved the ultimate resolution. This is a very dramatic book because it features two very dramatic main characters, but I like that about it. The romance is lovely and the story is incredibly compelling; I read most of it in one sitting. It's a great sequel to Just Like That and makes me want to pick up more of McCade's work, which you should absolutely also do. I received an ARC of this book for free as part of a blog tour in exchange for an honest review.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Robin Mandell

    Just Like This has all the loveliness and softness I need these days. Cole McCade's lush and descriptive, but clear, writing is perfect here. Descriptions, whether of clothes, or rooms, or bodies, are rich with sensory detail. Each character comes to life as a unique (in all senses of the word) individual in our first glimpse of them. I've been enjoying this series of contemporary romances because, though they are, well, contemporary, they have a bit of an alternate reality feel because the setti Just Like This has all the loveliness and softness I need these days. Cole McCade's lush and descriptive, but clear, writing is perfect here. Descriptions, whether of clothes, or rooms, or bodies, are rich with sensory detail. Each character comes to life as a unique (in all senses of the word) individual in our first glimpse of them. I've been enjoying this series of contemporary romances because, though they are, well, contemporary, they have a bit of an alternate reality feel because the setting is so unique. The vast majority of us can say we've never been to a boys' boarding school where most of the teachers live in the dorms. I wasn't sure I was going to like this book because I generally don't enjoy enemies-to-lovers romances. But, Just Like This takes a unique twist on this trope. The way enemies-to-lovers usually plays out in the workplace is that coworkers are obligated to work with each other either by a boss or an important client. In Just Like this, rian (the art teacher) and Damon (the gym teacher and football coach) choose to work together to help one of their students. No one is asking them to do this. Indeed, their supervisor would like them to stop. But, both men smell trouble and they care what happens to their students. This means that, no matter how prickly they are with each other, we're given a good reason to like both of them right off the bat. even I was rooting for both of them from the start, although, overall, I thought Damon was the more interesting of the two. I adore how Damon's gentleness is right there below the surface, that it emerges and recedes dynamically, from the very beginning, rather than being something that is "uncovered" as part of his arc. This is a kind man, a gentle man. A man who enjoys beauty and cares about his students. He is a fully realized character right from the beginning; his growth has more to do with how he relates to other people and less to do with how he understands himself. If you read "Just Like That," you'll be happy to see some familiar characters. And, if you didn't read it, you can still dive right in with this book. If you like your romances with plenty of quirky dialogue, lots of steam, and a healthy dose of contemplation, try this one out.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Cat Wolfe

    Just Like This follows the art teacher Rian and the American football coach Damon as they fall in love while working together to discover what's troubling a student. McCade has created some outstanding characters. Damon and Rian are men with depth, with passions, with good qualities as well as bad. I loved their backstory: Rian as the wealthy, privileged son who's trying to stand on his own two feet, and Damon as the Indigenous adoptee who feels alienated from his culture. Both men lost in their Just Like This follows the art teacher Rian and the American football coach Damon as they fall in love while working together to discover what's troubling a student. McCade has created some outstanding characters. Damon and Rian are men with depth, with passions, with good qualities as well as bad. I loved their backstory: Rian as the wealthy, privileged son who's trying to stand on his own two feet, and Damon as the Indigenous adoptee who feels alienated from his culture. Both men lost in their way and seeking somewhere to belong, both making Albin Academy their home. I enjoyed seeing them get to know each other, lose their preconceptions and find common ground. Their romance ends very sweetly. I also enjoyed the scenes with the students; I've taught teens and the secondary characters felt very realistic. The main plot question--what's troubling Chris, a good student that both men teach--is unusual, which is always a plus in my book. All round a great job in terms of characters and plotting and I'd have rated the novel higher had it not been about the pacing and prose. I struggled to read through certain passages, I must admit. For someone who reads novels of this length in a day or two (and who's actually a fan of baroque prose), it took me weeks to get through the book. It's overly descriptive and not necessarily in terms of setting, but there is exhaustive description of every single emotion the men feel about each other, of every single body part they glance at every time, and of their every thought. The internal narration is very detailed, which slows down pacing a great deal. I can tell that McCade is talented in sketching vivid scenes, but I wish he'd pared down his descriptions to make the important details stand out bettter. In short, I enjoyed spending time in Albin Academy and getting to know these two antagonists-turned-lovers, but at times it was a slog. However, if this kind of prose sounds like your thing, then chances are you'll love it. Thank you NetGalley for providing an ARC in exchange for an honest review.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Pjm12

    This continues the series started with Just Like That and once again we see teachers trying to do the best by their spoiled privileged pupils. It's also clear these are kids who are neglected by absent parents, so they do deserve our sympathies despite how much luxury and freedom they have. Rian and Damon are complete opposites and the majority of their conversations are hostile, based on assumptions they both make about each other, without really knowing anything. Art and sport rarely combine, a This continues the series started with Just Like That and once again we see teachers trying to do the best by their spoiled privileged pupils. It's also clear these are kids who are neglected by absent parents, so they do deserve our sympathies despite how much luxury and freedom they have. Rian and Damon are complete opposites and the majority of their conversations are hostile, based on assumptions they both make about each other, without really knowing anything. Art and sport rarely combine, and I love how this pair work around their differences and are spellbound by attraction. They don't like each other, but man! the chemistry is off the charts. The mystery surrounding Chris drives the plot, and the romance drives the action! It takes a while, but when they fall into bed, they are kidding themselves it's just a fling. It's not. Summer and Fox make small appearances, but I am more interested in reading about Assistant Principal Walden's secrets and absences... Hope there's another one to come about him. I did enjoy this, but I do have one niggle. There is no mention of condoms ever, from the first time they sleep together. I found it distracting, because I rarely read a romance without it at least being discussed. Maybe it was there, but I read carefully and twice and I couldn't see it anywhere. So three and a half stars because of that. Just Like This is out Nov 24 and I suspect everyone who read Summer and Fox's story will be back for this one. Thanks Netgalley and Carina Press for advanced copy.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Cathy Geha

    Just Like This by Cole McCade Albin Academy #2 Opposites attract…sometimes… When sparks are ignited negatively it often means something positive soon might transpire and so it happened for Rian Falwell and Damon Louis. One man is artistic and the other a jock. Both have back stories that have formed them and come into their relationship with chips, of a sort, on their shoulders. Both also have a deep desire to help the boys at the academy and in so doing, while working together, forge a bond stron Just Like This by Cole McCade Albin Academy #2 Opposites attract…sometimes… When sparks are ignited negatively it often means something positive soon might transpire and so it happened for Rian Falwell and Damon Louis. One man is artistic and the other a jock. Both have back stories that have formed them and come into their relationship with chips, of a sort, on their shoulders. Both also have a deep desire to help the boys at the academy and in so doing, while working together, forge a bond strong enough to see them to a HEA that brings them both a whole lot of just what they both have always wanted. What I liked: * Rian: ethereal with a core of steel, soft hearted but firm, wears a smile for a mask, artistic dablber – I really liked him and the growth he showed in the book. * Damon: conflicted, looking for his roots, closed off, wary, strong, warm, complicated – I liked him and was glad he was able to open up. * Chris: young, good, helper, kind, caring, great potential – so glad his situation worked out eventually. * Wondering about Walden – assistant principal. I am guessing he might get his own HEA, too. * The premises for the story and its location – a boy’s school has potential for romance among staff and students but not between the two…probably. * The emphasis on the students and what was best rather than on the rules alone * The mention of how adoption and not knowing one’s roots can impact a person even though they may grow up in a loving supportive family. * That there was a HEA for Rian and Damon What I didn’t like: * At times I felt the characters were stereotypical/predictable, but I liked them anyway. * Knowing that bullying and exploitation takes place even though I wish it did not. Did I like this book? Yes Would I read more by this author? I think so Thank you to NetGalley and Carina Adores for the ARC – This is my honest review. 3-4 Stars

  26. 4 out of 5

    ButtonsMom2003

    I loved this; the audiobook was fantastic! Just Like This was a wonderful story. I'm not normally a huge fan of enemies-to-lovers stories but I loved this one. It also has an opposites attract vibe going on which I liked. While I enjoyed reading this book, I have to say that the audiobook made it even better. Unless he narrates under another name, I've never listened to an audiobook performed by Tim Todd until Just Like This. There was something very compelling about his voice and it really made I loved this; the audiobook was fantastic! Just Like This was a wonderful story. I'm not normally a huge fan of enemies-to-lovers stories but I loved this one. It also has an opposites attract vibe going on which I liked. While I enjoyed reading this book, I have to say that the audiobook made it even better. Unless he narrates under another name, I've never listened to an audiobook performed by Tim Todd until Just Like This. There was something very compelling about his voice and it really made an impact on me. The story itself was very engaging. I was impressed with the depth of caring that Rian and Damon showed for one of their students and the lengths they went to, to help him. Cole McCade did a great job of keeping us guessing about what was going on by using breadcrumbs and not revealing, until the end, what was going on with Chris. I did not see it coming at all! The epilogue, set a few years in the future, was perfect. Epilogues are often my favorite part of a book and that was the case with this one. Not that I didn't love the main story, because I did, but the epilogue just made me feel all kinds of wonderful and made my eyes leak happy tears. I don't know if there will be more books in this series but if there are, I will be reading them. A review copy of the ebook was provided by the publisher via NetGalley, and a review copy of the audiobook direct from the publisher, but this did not influence my opinion or rating of the book. ***Reviewed for Xtreme-Delusions dot com***

  27. 5 out of 5

    Lauriane (L.M. Durand)

    Just Like This is the second installment in the Albin Academy series. I absolutely adored Just Like That, the first book in the series. So, I was really eager to read this book. The story is about Damon, the gym teacher, and Rian, the art teacher, who come to realize that one of their A students, Chris, has been lying to them as to where he's been. They're worried and want to understand what's going on with Chris especially because of his worrisome behavior/look. Unfortunately, both teachers can Just Like This is the second installment in the Albin Academy series. I absolutely adored Just Like That, the first book in the series. So, I was really eager to read this book. The story is about Damon, the gym teacher, and Rian, the art teacher, who come to realize that one of their A students, Chris, has been lying to them as to where he's been. They're worried and want to understand what's going on with Chris especially because of his worrisome behavior/look. Unfortunately, both teachers cannot stand each other, but their genuine concern will force them to put their anger/hate aside. Both will find more than they bargained for. This enemy-to-lover romance is heartwarming as the characters learn so much about themselves. They fight their own demons and while fighting this attraction. The chemistry is great between them. The characters are really fleshed out and the story unfolds nicely. The mystery around what happened to Chris adds enough suspense to keep the story going. The only thing that made me rate this book 4 instead of 5 is that the characters spend a lot of time in their heads, and I found myself skimming through a lot. Though I love the story - I just felt it could have used less exploration into their doubts and fears. Apart from that, I love the story, the characters, and the ending is just beautiful. Just Like This is a sweet romance and a fast read.

  28. 4 out of 5

    ML

    Master class in enemies to lovers storytelling Nobody can set a scene quite like Cole. All the wordy goodness is perfect for setting the mood for the characters to live in. Rian and Damon are polar opposites. They are quite hostile and acrimonious to one another in the beginning. BUT their shared purpose of looking out for a student binds these two teachers together. The student part was a bit dubious and anti-climatic when it was all figured out tbh. I just wanted the focus on these 2 MCs. They Master class in enemies to lovers storytelling Nobody can set a scene quite like Cole. All the wordy goodness is perfect for setting the mood for the characters to live in. Rian and Damon are polar opposites. They are quite hostile and acrimonious to one another in the beginning. BUT their shared purpose of looking out for a student binds these two teachers together. The student part was a bit dubious and anti-climatic when it was all figured out tbh. I just wanted the focus on these 2 MCs. They were enough of a draw without the additional plot device. I enjoyed their love/hate relationship. The final parts are definitely worth getting too. The HEA is beautiful.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Sandy

    I adored everything about this book. The differing background Rian and Damon brought to the situation made for interesting conversations. Although Damon came onto the scene in a rather unlikeable way, I loved that as Rian got to know him, my opinion of Damon changed just as much as Rian's did. I'm always a sucker for a quirky character and Rian fit that perfectly. While the resolution of the mystery around Chris was a little far fetched, it is totally like a teenager to do something so ill-conce I adored everything about this book. The differing background Rian and Damon brought to the situation made for interesting conversations. Although Damon came onto the scene in a rather unlikeable way, I loved that as Rian got to know him, my opinion of Damon changed just as much as Rian's did. I'm always a sucker for a quirky character and Rian fit that perfectly. While the resolution of the mystery around Chris was a little far fetched, it is totally like a teenager to do something so ill-conceived, so it worked. The epilogue was adorable and tied the whole thing up nicely.

  30. 5 out of 5

    thunderlightning

    4 stars I liked this one better than the first book.

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