TEN RULES FOR FAKING IT is a delicious, slow-burn romantic comedy about two broken souls.
Everly, a radio station producer and her station manager, Chris, have 1001 reasons for not becoming a couple. The most obvious reason is work-related: he’s her boss. More subtle reasons include her social anxiety, Chris’s demons from being raised by a manipulative father, and a huge secret Chris is hiding from his colleagues. Their attraction is mutual, but they barely acknowledge each other.
Everything changes when she accidentally rants on air about catching her soon-to-be ex in bed with someone else on her 30th birthday. The station’s owner wants her fired, but phone lines and social media outlets light up with messages of support. To save her job, Chris creates a bachelorette type promo, which would send Everly on a series of fake dates and allow listeners to weigh in on her choices. Aware of her anxiety, Chris realizes this could be outside her comfort zone, and leaves the decision up to her.
Can she confront her ultimate nightmare: socialize with strangers as the world watches? The answer is yes, because she’s incredibly courageous. Chris applauds her bravery, never judging her for the anxiety others routinely mis-read. He puts safeguards into place to protect her during the dates, and tells her she can always pull the plug. (What a guy!)
With Chris by her side, we see her flourish and flounder. She even lowers her guard to call him after a panic attack with the words, “I need a friend.” That friendship becomes special to both of them and another roadblock to coupledom. But they can only avoid the truth for so long …
Bravo to the author for creating a charming love story while taking the reader deep inside a crippling, easily-hidden anxiety disorder.