This was such a frustrating reading experience for me. I started out really engaged. I loved the tone, the characters were interesting, I loved the pugs and I wanted see how Rose and Ash would come together. By a third of the way through I was flagging and by the end I was frustrated.
Rose is single, successful, the owner of two pugs, and a little bored. Rose is on track to become partner in a business consulting firm. Ash is struggling, her career and self esteem are in tatters. she had been an up and coming film maker, half of a power couple on the rise. After a terrible car accident, her wife decided she was taking too long to recover and left her. The ex-wife got the good press and the clout in the divorce. Rose finds Ash interesting and takes her on as a pro bono client to prepare her for a pitch to an eccentric investor.
There were a couple of things that didn’t work for me. I felt like the plot was getting in the way of the story. I don’t know what the magic is that allows some stories to have a lot going on and still feel satisfying, but that magic wasn’t there for me in this one. When Stetz-Waters let the characters just be, they were lovely. And yes, I am a dog person, so there were times when I was wondering where the pugs were and who was taking care of them. There were also some conversations that needed to happen much earlier in the book for me to buy that these characters were adults who could carry on a successful relationship. Maybe I wanted more vibes and this was all plot.
There is quite a bit of trauma in Behind the Scenes. Rose lost her parents when their small plane crashed and now she has a fear of flying. Ash has some sexual disfunction as a result of a car crash.
I received this as an advance reader copy from Forever and NetGalley. My opinions are my own, freely and honestly given.