ARC provided by the publisher via Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review.
“Maybe he’s 1 percent mine. That has to be enough.”
Sally Thorne’s long awaited and most anticipated sophomore release, 99 Percent Mine was truly a wild ride for me. I’ll be honest, it took me a while to warm up to this story and especially to this main character, but I ended up enjoying this one for the most part. But, sadly, it is no The Hating Game, or at least it wasn’t for me.
This story stars Darcy Barrett who is a wedding photographer who is currently working at a bar, while also living in a house that her grandmother left to her and her twin brother, Jamie, after she passed away. Darcy has never been known to stay in one place for long, but she can no longer find her passport, so she is sort of stuck in the town she has grown up in. Plus, the house that was left to Darcy and Jamie desperately needs to be completely remodeled.
And one night when Darcy is coming home from work at the bar, she realizes that the contractor on the remodeling job is none other that her and Jamie’s best friend, Tom. Who also is the one guy who has been able to get under Darcy’s skin and into her heart, except when she had the opportunity to finally have him, she completely blew it, and now he is engaged to someone else.
Sounds like a pretty good read, right? I actually adored the set up and the actual unique setting of this story. Okay, now that we have the basic premise out of the way, I want to talk a little bit more about Darcy and why she was the main reason I didn’t enjoy this story for the first fifty perfect. For one, Darcy is written to be so edgy and quirky and constantly let’s you know it. I lost count of how many times she or other characters remarked on her short hair and nipple piercing. (Side note, who gets one nipple pierced in 2019? Like, come on.) But basically, this was all super annoying and felt so forced to me.
Next, Darcy is living with a very serious chronic heart condition, which she completely ignores throughout most of the book. This ended up being very triggering for me. I don’t want to make this review about me and my family, but if you’ve seen a few other reviews I have talked about my dad’s heart condition before, and how much it has impacted me, my family, and my anxiety’s life. So, reading about a character that just didn’t give a shit was really bothering to me. Especially since she relies on her twin brother to literally save her life. Trust me, I completely understand depression and not caring to better yourself or take care of your health, but she just chose to rely on her brother and make really poor choices, no matter her mental state. And friends, I promise you, no dick is ever worth your health or your life. I swear to every higher power.
“I’m the client. I’m his best friend’s sister. I’m Mr. and Mrs. Barrett’s weak-hearted daughter. I’m the liability he swore to take care of.”
Okay, let’s talk some more about Tom. I loved Tom, completely. But sometimes Darcy’s over aggression and scary behavior towards him was too much for me. And all the ugly jealously and nasty things she would say about his fiancé? Like, come on, let’s not. Also, Darcy does some very grey-area cheating attempts in this book that made me kind of uncomfortable!
And the last thing that bothered me was the not so great sibling relationship. Plus, Jamie just read so insufferable! You all know my brother is my best friend in this entire world and I just don’t really enjoy seeing not great sibling bonds in stories, even though the story constantly tries to make you feel like they at least had a good relationship for most their lives. Especially since Darcy and Jamie’s dynamic was so weird and I felt like I was missing so much. I really think this book would have benefited from way more actual flashbacks for Darcy, Jamie, and Tom’s childhood. Like, I think it would have improved this book so much.
Oh my gosh, I sound so negative, but I promise I did end up enjoying this read. The sex scenes were 11/10, I won’t lie. And the angst and the payoff felt so damn satisfying. Also, Sally Thorne just knows how to write amazing banter in general. From making me swoon, to making me cry, to making me laugh out loud, this author really can weave words together so damn well. Oh, and I loved Darcy’s best friend, Truly, so much! Like, give me her book please! But only her, you feel me?
Overall, this was a fun read even if it took me a little bit to warm up to Darcy and all the situations she had going on. Plus, I think this was a really fun and unique play on the friends to lovers trope. The writing is great, the pace is fast and fantastic, the banter will make you giggle, and the romance will have you fanning yourself! I for sure think that if you enjoyed The Hating Game that there is a good chance you will enjoy this one, too, even though it really is completely different. But I’m mostly excited to see what Sally Thorne does next!
The quotes above were taken from an ARC and are subject to change upon publication.
Content and trigger warnings for talk of loss of a loved one, alcoholism, a very serious chronic heart condition (and threat of failure) throughout the entire book, assault (unwanted grabbing of her wrist in a threatening manner in a empty parking lot), and a few questionable comments/jokes made about people’s cultures (like going to bury nametags in the Japanese forest, Aokigahara).