Review: Not Here to Make Friends by Jodi McAlister

The third book in the fun and fantastic Marry Me Juliet series turns its attention to the two characters that I just love to hate, Lily Fireball and Producer Murray. Except ... it turns out that Lily Fireball wasn't always a reality television wannabe. Once upon a time she was Lily Ong, a show runner for none other than Marry Me Juliet and the best friend of Murray. Together, they created some remarkable game changing reality television. Then Lily's husband passed away, Lily and Murray caved into their feelings for one another that both had been fighting for years at an extremely inopportune time, and now they are estranged ... until one day Lily walks into Murray's life again as Lily Fireball, a ruthless and manipulative contestant on the series that he has been tasked with producing ... alone. Add to the fact that nothing is going right this season, from covid lockdowns to the fact that the contestants are all finding love in the wrong places, and Murray's life is about to implode. Is it possible, however, that his old friend Lily might just be by his side after all?

This was such a fun and entertaining read. Kudos to Jodi McAlister for creating two characters who are selfish and horrible, and who do things that I would find abhorrent  in real life, and making me want to cheer for them. The major storyline follows the same timeline and events as Here For the Right Reasons and Can I Steal You For a Second and I found myself feeling grateful for the duel narratives and flashbacks, which gave the story a slightly different edge. I enjoyed all of the happily ever afters and I liked the way that this one also included a bit about Dylan and Cece and Dylan G and Amanda. I also found it to be an incredibly interesting glimpse into reality television, not only what it is, but what it could be.

A fun read. 



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