I’m sleeping with the nerd.
The nice guy.
The science geek who wears periodic table t-shirts around campus.
That’s my dirty little secret, but it began long before he unknowingly transferred to the same college I attend. We met at the summer camp I was mandated to work at, and our hush-hush affair started behind the kayak cabin and in the darkened canteen long after our respective campers went to sleep.
When Mick Barrett, rockstar name a complete red herring, enrolls at Salem Walsh University, we’re both shocked the first time we bump into each other. And he’s … surprisingly cold. With goals and secrets of his own, Mick is closed off and uninterested, something I’ve never encountered from the opposite sex.
My bruised ego has no time to recover, however, when he discovers the real secret I’m keeping, one that’s even more detrimental than our steamy summer fling. Agreeing to become my tutor, and help me save my future, the glasses-wearing swimmer, with the body of an Olympian under that punny math sweatshirt, begins to grow on me. Again.
Except we both have bigger things to focus on than sneaking around. Plus, we’re not made for each other. He’s aiming to be the next doctor of our generation, while I’m just hoping to survive my Saturday morning hangover.
Too bad our bodies, and hearts, start to believe otherwise.
Which has me questioning; can my dirty little secret become a happily ever after?
Sunny Shelly’s Review: 4 Stars
Jolie is the popular girl. Mick is the sexy nerd. They both thought their summer romance had run its course when their jobs as camp counsellors ended, so they are surprised to see one another on their college campus where Mick is a junior-year transfer. Not only is Jolie keeping her friendship with Mick under wraps, but she also hasn’t told her roommates a whopper of a secret. And when her future at Salem Walsh depends on Mick tutoring her in biology, it starts to get harder for Jolie to keep her secrets. Mick, meanwhile, is under a ton of pressure to get into med school, fueled by his desire to help out his dad. He’s not looking for any distractions to keep him from his plans, but that’s exactly what happens when he and Jolie start dating.
The blow up between Jolie and Mick is the perfect culmination of both of their stresses and fears. Frustrated with himself for veering off course and away from his plans, Mick lashes out at Jolie, throwing every spoiled rich girl stereotype in her face that she’s been trying to distance herself from and change about herself. Their time apart puts a lot of things into perspective for both of them, and Carrie Aarons does a great job of exploring that growth with both characters.
Although this book started off a bit slow for me — I wasn’t as enraptured with both characters like I have been with some others in CA books — the story grew on me. Mick was by far a better character than Jolie. I adored him, his unassuming nature, his geekiness. Jolie was a little harder to like, because I did see her as a spoiled rich girl. Although, what had gotten her into trouble and how she didn’t rat out the others did give her some extra points.
Overall, Nerdy Little Secret is an enjoyable opposites-attract story, easy to read and with a satisfying HEA that made me smile. I received an advanced copy and voluntarily left a review.