Highly Suspicious and Unfairly Cute, Talia Hibbert

Highly Suspicious and Unfairly Cute, Talia Hibbert

Highly Suspicious and Unfairly Cute by Talia Hibbert is a laugh-out-loud enemies to lovers story that is sure to bring a smile to any reader’s face. I loved the idea of a wilderness survival course in which ex-best friends are forced to work together to succeed, and the main characters have such an enjoyable dynamic. This is the perfect read for fans of the enemies to lovers trope, and a strong YA debut from the author of The Brown Sisters trilogy.

Highly Suspicious and Unfairly Cute, Talia HibbertTitle: Highly Suspicious and Unfairly Cute
Author: Talia Hibbert
Publisher: Joy Revolution
Genres: Contemporary, Romance, Young Adult Fiction
Publication Date: January 3, 2023
Rating: four-stars

Summary (from Goodreads):

Bradley Graeme is pretty much perfect. He's a star football player, manages his OCD well (enough), and comes out on top in all his classes . . . except the ones he shares with his ex-best friend, Celine.

Celine Bangura is conspiracy-theory-obsessed. Social media followers eat up her takes on everything from UFOs to holiday overconsumption--yet, she's still not cool enough for the popular kids' table. Which is why Brad abandoned her for the in-crowd years ago. (At least, that's how Celine sees it.)

These days, there's nothing between them other than petty insults and academic rivalry. So when Celine signs up for a survival course in the woods, she's surprised to find Brad right beside her.

Forced to work as a team for the chance to win a grand prize, these two teens must trudge through not just mud and dirt but their messy past. And as this adventure brings them closer together, they begin to remember the good bits of their history. But has too much time passed . . . or just enough to spark a whole new kind of relationship?

Amazon “iBooks”

❃ I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review. ❃

Highly Suspicious and Unfairly Cute by Talia Hibbert

For Celine, being the best at everything she does and working hard toward her dream of becoming a lawyer is everything. When she gets the opportunity to sign up for a prestigious survival course in the woods led by her idol, she jumps at the opportunity, but the experience quickly sours when she learns that her rival and ex-best friend has signed up as well. Forced to work together to both survive and win a scholarship to the university of their choice, Celine and Brad must confront their past and forge a new future for their relationship as they start to reconnect.

❀ Interesting Dynamic

Celine and Bradley have an interesting dynamic, and I loved reading about their interactions. Celine is passionate about conspiracy theories, running a successful TikTok account, and I admired her drive to achieve her goals. However, as the book progresses, I really felt for Celine as she questions how much of her dream is of her own will and how much is influenced by a desire to get back at her dad. Bradley used to be Celine’s best friend, but once he joined the football team, he left her behind for a new friend group. While both Brad and Celine have said hurtful things to each other in the past, it is clear that they still care for each other, and I enjoyed watching them confront their past as they get closer.

❀ Wilderness Survival Course

This book has such an interesting setting, and I loved the idea of a wilderness survival course. As the course forces its participants to work together and think creatively in order to succeed, it provides a great setup for self-discovery and forcing the main characters to reconnect. I would have liked to see even more about the course and the characters’ “survival” in the woods of England and Scotland as the summary emphasizes, but I still appreciated this unique setting.

❀ Entertaining Story

Highly Suspicious and Unfairly Cute by Talia Hibbert is an entertaining love story about following your dreams and mending old relationships. I loved reading about the main characters’ rivalry, and the wilderness setting makes for some satisfying moments. This is a great read for those who enjoy books with the enemies to lovers/academic rivals trope.

About Talia Hibbert

Talia Hibbert

Talia Hibbert is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author who lives in a bedroom full of books. Supposedly, there is a world beyond that room, but she has yet to drum up enough interest to investigate.

She writes sexy, diverse romance because she believes that people of marginalised identities need honest and positive representation. Her interests include beauty, junk food, and unnecessary sarcasm. She also rambles intermittently about the romance genre online.

Talia self-publishes via Nixon House and is represented by Courtney Miller-Callihan at Handspun Literary.

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About The Candid Cover

Olivia ❀ YA book blogger, Starbucks lover, novice New Yorker, & professional bibliophile.

20 thoughts on “Highly Suspicious and Unfairly Cute, Talia Hibbert

  1. Lisa Mandina (Lisa Loves Literature) says:

    I got the e-galley of this from Netgalley and it is my next to read! I haven’t read her adult series yet, although I own the first one and really want to! So excited to read this one. We have the first in the adult series in my high school library, so I’m excited to have a YA title from her to share as well! Great review! Hoping I enjoy it as much when I start it.
    Lisa Mandina (Lisa Loves Literature) recently posted…Review: The Wrong Kind of Weird by James Ramos

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