180 Seconds is my first Jessica Park read. I have several book friends who have raved about her in the past, which tends to make me a little nervous, but the blurb drew me in and I knew I wouldn’t be able to resist. I went into the book expecting a YA/NA story of self-discovery and romance and, while the book definitely delivered on both fronts, it turned out to be so much more than the sum of its parts, an ode to love in all its forms and hidden in places you least expect to find it.
There is something inherently relatable about Jessica’s characters, right down to the supporting ones. Their quirkiness, emotionality, and authenticity can be found to some varying degree in any reader and it’s truly a gift to be able to write characters with whom a wide array of readers will be able to connect. This book made me feel on such a deep level that at times I found myself putting it down, just so I could take a minute to focus on the way those moments had touched me.
I don’t think I could overstate how perfect Esben is as the romantic lead. He is the kind of guy that I wish for my daughters to find as they grow older and I hope they don’t settle for anyone who doesn’t possess his levels of patience, gentleness, empathy, and ability to love freely. In a time when it feels like the alpha male reigns supreme as the romantic hero archetype, 180 Seconds provides proof positive that the romance world needs more of these incredible, highly underrated beta men.
A lovely and refreshing breath of fresh air, 180 Seconds is perhaps the most heartfelt, joyful novel that I have had the pleasure of reading in quite a while and I highly recommend it to anyone in need of a little life inspiration. You’ll love what you find hiding between the pages.
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