Sincerely, Carter by Whitney Gracia WilliamsSincerely, Carter by Whitney Gracia Williams
Published April 2015
Genres: New Adult
Format: eBook
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Just friends.
We’re just friends.
No, really. She’s just my best friend...

Arizona Turner has been my best friend since fourth grade, even when we “hated” each other. We’ve been there for one another through first kisses, first “times,” and we’ve been each other’s constant when good relationships turned bad. (We even went to colleges that were minutes away from each other…)

Throughout the years, and despite what anyone says, we’ve never crossed the line.

Never thought about it.
Never wanted to.

Until one night changed everything.
At least, it should’ve ...

Carter James and Arizona Turner have been friends since fourth great, and have always remained completely platonic: they are inseparable best friends. However, one day and out of nowhere, they both act on a mutual spark and engage into a more physical relationship.

But this “new” relationship type they are unable to define might be threatened as college is just around the corner and choices have to be made. Is what they have just physical – or an itch they need to scratch – or could it be more?

What I loved about this book:

  • The great characters
  • The perfect book boyfriend that Carter became
  • The e-mail/texts/letter exchanges

What I felt needed improvement:

  • How the story begins
  • The manwhore-turns-one-man-woman/friends-to-lovers-story gets a bit old
  • Pace issues towards the middle of the book

Sincerely, Carter had garnered quite a lot of good reviews on Goodreads so I thought I should just give it a go. After all, I am a sucker for a good friends to lovers read, even though I dislike the ever repetitive plot of “manwhore gets intelligent and sexually shy girl and performs a full 180”.

“I’m in love with you, and I need you to know that… I think I’ve loved you for most of my life.”

I really loved the writing, which made the characters feel extra real and extra endearing. The dual POV writing (1st person) allows the reader to get into the bottom of both main characters’ minds.

As I said, the characters are super endearing, even if they are in some ways complete opposites. She’s the foodie, culinary freak and sexually gun-shy person; and he is the ex-jock turned lawyer, but with a full-sleeve tattoo and a lot of female attention – sounds unlikely (and quite frankly an age-old opposite-attracts story), but it worked in this context! I absolutely loved the fun and the banter between those two and their friends.

And while I couldn’t always agree with Ari (even though she had her reasons), I absolutely loved Carter and how devoted he was to her once the spell was broken, and even before that. The casual texts and e-mails they exchanged as best friends turn into actual letters and Carter starts turning into the perfect book boyfriend. Swoon-factor ten thousand: all the quotes in this review are from him!

“I recently had sex with someone who might’ve ruined me for others.”

Also the side characters were really nicely pictured, and held a special place and a special importance as the story moves on.

The only things I didn’t like about Sincerely, Carter are quite important points, but I am having a hard time deciding whether they should weigh my rating down considerably or not.

The first thing concerns the “launch of the story”: I found it a bit abrupt that after years and years of pure friendship, from one second to the other (within the first 2 chapters), the main characters start crushing on each other physically and mentally – out of nowhere and at the same time. This came across as quite unnatural and unrealistic, but oh well, I would assume it was a way to get the story started (although it could have been just a tad more subtle).

The second thing that had me eyerolling was how age-old the manwhore-turns-one-man-woman/friends-to-lovers plot is. But then again, I must mitigate this statement by saying that the author successfully made this one unique by introducing us to a unique set of characters.

The third thing I disliked was the pace around the middle of the book, or rather the fact that the story line became a tad boring. Thankfully the full intrigue picked up towards the last 25% – that’s when the angst kicks in and the story does a total 180. Oh yeah. And so did Carter.

“You’re more than ‘just’ my best friend, and I never want to be ‘just friends’ again.”

Unfortunately, it was also a quite short read, because I managed to read it within 2 working days. But in the end, I ended this book on a positive note (even though I would have loved a thorough epilogue), and found it to be a nice read as a whole, so I will be gentle with the rating and recommending this to all fans of the  friends-to-lovers genre.

Also, it’s rare to find a standalone book with decent characters and a story that works out well (unless you’re reading a Colleen Hoover book), and Sincerely, Carter is definitely one of them!

Detailed Rating
4 Stars
5 Stars
4 Stars
All the feels
5 Stars
Overall: four-stars