Playing House Blog Tour Review

Welcome back all ya’ll! Today I’m talking about Playing House by Ruby Lang, a well-known contemporary romance author. This is her latest novel, a start to a fresh new series, and my first read of hers. No spoilers, but this won’t be the last for sure. Check out all the deets, and a chance to win below!

About Playing House:

I received this book for free from Goddess Fish Promotions in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Playing House Blog Tour ReviewTitle: Playing House
Author: Ruby Lang
Pub. Date: August 12, 2019
Publisher Carina Press
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance, W/M
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“ Playing House is relatable, heartwarming, and oh so sexy. I zoomed through this thoughtful and joyful story about two people finding themselves and each other.” —Jasmine Guillory, New York Times bestselling author of The Wedding Date and The Proposal

Romance blossoms between two city planners posing as newlyweds in this first in a bright new series by acclaimed author Ruby Lang

The last thing Oliver Huang expects to see on the historic Mount Morris home tour is longtime acquaintance Fay Liu bustling up and kissing him hello. He’s happy to playact being a couple to save her from a pushy admirer. Fay’s beautiful, successful and smart, and if he’s being honest, Oliver has always had a bit of a thing for her.

Maybe more than a bit.

Geeking out over architectural details is Oliver and Fay’s shared love language, and soon they’re touring pricey real estate across Upper Manhattan as the terribly faux but terribly charming couple Darling and Olly.

For the first time since being laid off from the job he loved, Oliver has something to look forward to. And for the first time since her divorce, Fay’s having fun.

Somewhere between the light-filled living rooms and spacious closets they’ve explored, this faux relationship just may have sparked some very real feelings. For Oliver and Fay, home truly is where their hearts are.

One-click with confidence. This title is part of the Carina Press Romance Promise : all the romance you’re looking for with an HEA/HFN. It’s a promise!

excerpt from playing house:

In all their years as wary mutual acquaintances, Oliver Huang never expected Fay Liu to be so happy to see him. But here she was, in this showcase home on the Mount Morris Park historic house tour, flashing Oliver a huge, almost desperate smile. She stepped right up to kiss him heartily on the lips, and in the process knocked his glasses askew, smudging them.

Then as he reached up to adjust them, she commandeered his arm and linked hers through his.
Fay was a fellow urban planner and, most importantly, she was a partner at Milieu. They had mutual friends. He’d even sent her firm a CV, and had finally received a follow-up from one of her partners expressing interest just that morning. For a fuzzy moment, he wondered if she was here, had sought him out directly, to arrange the interview. Still, he hadn’t expected Fay to be quite so warm and, well, handsy? lipsy?—was that a word?—about greeting a potential employee.

And wasn’t she married?

But she gripped him more tightly and snuggled into his side. She felt good tucked into him. So, he allowed himself to relax, to enjoy touching another human body again, to almost hug someone, to feel needed, and wanted, and seen.

It was such a fleeting, wonderful connection. Fleeting, because in less than a minute, he understood what this was.

A man clomped up to them and scowled at the picture Oliver and Fay presented, standing in the upper hallway of the brownstone, looking for all the world like a pair of proud new homeowners.

Such a lovely illusion.

IMHO: Playing House

Playing House starts with fake dating between acquaintances that run in the same circles for years when happenstance ensures they get closer than ever before. I love the sparse history between the two that turns out to mean more than anyone could’ve guessed.

It’s a short novel, packed with plenty to love and enjoy, with my only caveat being could’ve been longer! I would’ve been quite tickled with more fake dating time, more of the real deal, or any stage in between really.

Don’t get me wrong though. The characters are well done, the plot worked through, and it sticks the landing so it’s not like there’s anything missing necessarily. I just would’ve liked more time there, is all. So obviously, I can’t wait to get the next installment in this series. I’m particularly interested in Oliver’s little brother’s story, and as well as Fay’s business partners.

 The Rundown:

  • › Cute, short, & sweet.
  • › Quick & easy read
  • › Left me satisfied & wanting more
  • › Knew nothing about urban planning going in. Enjoyed their mutual geeking out and community concern
  • › Love their touch flirting and comfort & calm between them.
  • › The enthusiastic consent.
  • › The hot & realistic sex scene with a bed on the floor.
  • › Yesssss my lost struggling millennial cohorts.
  • › Real talk about feelings re: traditional jobs and freelancing for Oliver and Fay’s upstart business with friends.
  • › Fay’s apartment unpacking stalemate and her BFF chats.
  • › Oliver crashing with his gay younger brother
  • › Already itching for more of this series!
  • Haven’t read any of Lang’s work before and will be soon!



About the Author:

About Ruby Lang

Ruby Lang Author Picture

Ruby Lang is pint-sized, prim, and bespectacled. Her alter ego, essayist Mindy Hung, has written for The New York Times, The Toast, and Salon, among others. She enjoys running (slowly), reading (quickly), and ice cream (at any speed). She lives in New York with a small child and a medium-sized husband.


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