Monday, July 10, 2017

Review: Artificial Sweethearts - Julie Hammerle

Artificial Sweethearts
Julie Hammerle
Series: North Pole, Minnesota, #2
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary, Romance
Publisher: Entangled: Crush
Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
It’s not chemistry between Tinka Foster and Sam Anderson that made them agree to fake date. With her parents trying to set her up with an annoying student golf coach, and intentionally single Sam’s family pressuring him to bring a date to his brother’s wedding, they could both use a drama-free summer.

So it’s not his muscular arms and quick wit that makes Tinka suggest they tell everyone they’re both taken. Definitely not. And it’s not butterflies that makes a kiss for appearances during the lake party go on way too long—so long that Sam wishes it were real.

But Tinka keeps people at arm’s length—she’s always been second best, even to her parents. And her relationship-for-show could crush everything when she realizes she’s done with fake, pretend, and second-best.

Disclaimer: This Entangled Teen Crush book contains bikinis at the lake, a lot of making out in dark theaters, and a meet-cute you’ll read twice.

I loved this fauxmance-romance, and I found it to be quite the quintessential summer read.

  1. The book is set in the summer time. This book begins with Tinka returning from boarding school to find out that her parents have moved to the country. She is already reeling from the multitude of bad choices she had made over the course of the past year, and she was really looking forward to being back in her familiar surroundings. Lucky for her, the new house comes with a sweet and handsome neighbor, Sam, who happens to be stressed out due to planning his brother's upcoming wedding as he dodges barbs regarding his non-existent love life. Instead of a summer romance, the two settle on a summer fauxmance to keep the families content and to avoid any undesirable suitors. 
    "Good Guy."
    "Very good guy."
    Tinka smiled. "You're kind of a Lloyd Dobbler, aren't you Sam?"
  2. The overall tone of the book is light and breezy. This book is filled with a lot of humor and we get to tag along on some really fun outings. There is sledding at Jingle Falls, nights on the lake, rides on the pontoon boat, movie nights,  a wedding, and even a Christmas in July festival. These type of outings scream summer time fun to me, and they provided the perfect backdrop for our hero and heroine to get to know each other better. I really enjoyed watching these two grow and change as their feelings for each other grew and changed. Tinka was known as an artful dodger type. When things got tough, she avoided it. All this dodging has left her with several tangled webs and some really damaged relationships. Through her friendship with Sam, she learned a lot about herself and what she wanted, and she made those attempts towards positive change to make it happen. Sam, who was just a sweet darling of a man, had some baggage too. By being with Tinka, he was able to gain some confidence, but also had her as a sounding board to share his feelings, as he thought he had to be the rock of the family and keep it all bottled up inside. 
  3. Summer is about spending quality time with family and friends. There is a LOT of page time dedicated to the many interactions between Sam and his family, and Tinka and her family/friends. I really loved the dynamic over at Sam's house. The bond between the Andersen siblings was so obvious, and I was pretty jealous of it. Their home abounded with household and I attribute a lot of it to the great characters Hammerle created. Tinka's house was a little more complicated. This family was still working through their issues, but they were trying, and I was cheering them on with every small accomplishment.
    Example of an adorable conversation between Sam and his brother's fiancee, Hakeem:
    "who I definitely saw looking at you like you were her favorite member of One Direction -"
    "Oh, Hakeem, get new references." Sam could't help smiling a tiny bit.
    "A girl who looked at you like you were the hottest member of 98 Degrees -" Now Sam actually did burst out laughing.
  4. "Summer loving had me a blast!" I was shipping these two from their first glimpse across the yard. I was in love with Sam immediately, and I was worried about Tinka. I wanted her to find a fine young man, such as Sam, to treat her well and help her through the things she was experiencing. These two really complimented each other, and they talked, like really talked to each other. It was such a great give and take friendship, and there were so many sweet, adorable, and swoony moments. 
  5. Summer is about enjoying your free time. And for me, what better way to enjoy it then with friends, family, and lots of baked goods. You see, Tinka loved to bake, and she did so often in the book. I wished at times that the book was scratch and sniff, because some of her creations sounded amazing. 
I have never had these before, but I want them after reading this book. 

I devoured this book. Sweet romance with light drama, and a really great epilogue! This was really a great one too, as it tied up so many things quite nicely. Between the humor and great movie references, as well as the sweet perfection that was Sam, I wore a pretty big grin across my face from beginning to end of this book. 

**I would like to thank the publisher for the advanced copy of this book. Quotes are from an ARC and may change upon publication.

Would you want to live in a town that celebrates Christmas six months of the year?
Let us know in the comments!


  1. Oh this sounds like such a perfect summer light read!!! I love next-door neighbor romances. This one is new but I need to add it now. Great review!

    1. I am a sucker for these stories. I loved the family vibe so much

  2. Oh my gosh, this sounds sooo cute! I already love the sound of Tinka (what a cool name) and Sam. And the Lloyd Dobbler reference... classic. :)

    1. Tinka was a nickname given to here by her brother. I think her name was Christina. There are tons of great movie references because Sam is a cinephile

  3. I love fauxmance stories! And I LOVE Christmas time. I get the blues big time when it's over every year and I count down until the next one. I think I need to check this one out!

    1. Awww, I think you would love living in North Pole, MN than. I am starting to think that my enjoyment of romances is tied closely to how much I like the hero, and Sam was wonderful. He sort of had his ugly duckling phase and turned into a sort of swan, but he still had that ugly duckling mindset. I think that just added more to his charm.

  4. This sounds like a really fun read. The characters and their families sound great!

    1. It was cute and fun, but there was actually a sad thread that tied the two MCs together, and was something that they and the families bonded over, which was very sweet.

  5. This is a new-to-me title and author, but a. I adore the cover (so cute) and title, and b. the story sounds really fun! Thanks so much for the review. :)

    1. The story was adorbs. Sam was precious cupcake and he made my heart pitter patter lots.

  6. This sounds like the perfect read for the beach! I honestly only needed to hear that the interactions between the MCs and their families were present in the book. I always love when a book focuses on family. The romance sounds sweet too!
    Great review! :)

    1. Exactly. Light and easy with enough substance to make it worthwhile. Sam's family was flawed, but there was so much love in that house. I am getting verklempt!