Getting By (A Knight’s Tale #1) by Claudia BurgoaGetting By by Claudia Burgoa
Published February 2014
Series: A Knight's Tale #1
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Format: ARC

Note: I was granted an advanced reader's copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my rating or the content of my review.

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When Emma Anderson arrived at San Francisco International Airport, she regretted accepting the distinction of being the maid of honor to Gaby’s—her childhood friend—wedding. It had been years since the last time she set foot in Menlo Park, where her parents had been killed. The rug where she had been shoving her feelings since that day looked bumpier than a camel’s hump. Who could blame her; if she hadn’t been selfish they’d still be around. Ever since that fateful day, Emma has been perfecting the knack of Getting By.

Cade’s wedding in Menlo Park—a city close to San Francisco—might be the perfect place for Jake Knight to shake the memories of his ex, Emma Anderson for good. Single, available women galore for an entire week was the perfect medication, one he intended to take three times a day for an entire week to return to his player days. It was a plan the former spy thought flawless until he came face to face with the maid of honor. Jake’s perfect retreat turns into a flight, fight or hide week of celebrations.

2 out of 5 Stars for a very confusing read…

Emma Anderson and Jake Knight have both found a way to silently deal with their issues from the past. Workaholism and no serious relationships seem to be the perfect way for them to cope. When they meet, something clicks into place, but none of them want to admit to what this clicking might be. They decide to let fate decide on their behalf and don’t exchange phone numbers, but they do meet again several times. Serendipity is doing its job, until they actually share something that vaguely resembles a casual relationship, which Emma then terminates after nearly two years.

A few months later, serendipity brings them back together once again at Emma’s best friend and Jake’s half brother’s wedding, and they will finally have to face the fact that they are not over each other, and will need to tackle the many things left unsaid.

Further to having read and absolutely loved Where Life Takes You as an ARC, the author provided me with a copy of Getting By and I was very eager to read it, expecting nothing less than the success that Where Life Takes You had when I read it.

However, Getting By turned out to be very confusing. It first started with Emma, who is made out to be a very quirky person, talking at the speed of light, and throwing weird comments into her phrases at all times.

“You can’t understand half the crap she says sometimes.”

Yes, that’s about right. But in fact the whole book is like this. You have huge difficulties understanding who just spoke (and since most scenes have at least 4 participants, this gets very confusing), and sometimes you don’t even really understand what they refer to, especially since lots of insider jokes get thrown into the picture too.

And story-wise, the plot is pretty straightforward: girls calls off the “casual relationship” with guy because she’s falling for him and believes her feelings are not mutual. Boy doesn’t understand break-up and since absence makes the heart grow fonder, boy realizes feelings are actually mutual and looks for the girl. Girl is still totally heartbroken when guy finds her. Guy thinks ahead and wonders if he’s made for commitment, but reckons he’s not, yet he cannot help acting like a boyfriend around what should actually be is ex.

So you get it: there’s a whole lot of beating around the bush here. And damn if that bush is not a messy one because on the way, Emma and Jake discover each other’s secrets and what actually made them to be such pretend loners in the first place. There will be a whole lot of details told for a storyline that comes down to something rather simple.

I was also a bit disappointed about the end, which came too easily and abruptly, even though I must admit it was a relief to me as a reader. I really had a tough time connecting with this book (and I don’t know whether I could connect at all). While I couldn’t stand Emma and her messed-up ways, I did however manage to warm up to Jake, who turned out to be the very thoughtful and lovely non-wannabe-boyfriend, even though I wanted to punch him too, because he couldn’t see good when it bit him in the butt sometimes.

Other reviewers mentioned they fell in love with Jake’s brothers. I couldn’t really build up that link yet, though. They could be a good starting point for a sequel, but I hope they will not all turn out to be the standard manwhore-experiences-instalove-and-devotes-himself-to-only-one-woman plot.

So even though I really wanted to like Getting By, it just didn’t work out for me. But considering how great Where Life Takes You was, I will definitely give Claudia Burgoa the benefit of doubt on Getting By and read any other releases coming from her.