A Modern Day Fairy Tale

Faith. Family. Fiction. Fun.

Thinking Out Loud by Grayson Long: Book Review

 *Book received for consideration. All thoughts are my own.

For most of her life, Eleanor Bailey has managed her emotions like a pro. Hence becoming a psychologist and helping other people manage theirs. But even the best professionals lose their cool from time to time. And it seems the time for Ellie, is now.

Ellie is experiencing what some might call a mid-life crisis. It seems being left at the altar and having to move back in with your sister can do that to a person. Not to mention having to take a job she considers demeaning to her academic abilities. Becoming Glendale High School’s new guidance counselor sounds less than ideal, especially when she’s just as irrationally grumpy and moody as the teenagers she has to meet with. Her plan? Just do the job and get back to her old life.

The old life where she struggles with anger issues and has no real friends? Seems like a good plan. Except for the fact that Glendale is irresistible. The lovable faculty, the quirky students, and the insanely attractive new boss, Benny. Ellie quickly finds her plans thwarted as they weasel their way into her heart with force. Caring deeply for the school and the people in it becomes inevitable.

As for Benny? He’s just your all-around good guy, with a pretty smile, and a pet cat. And he can’t seem to get enough of Ellie. The chemistry between them is undeniable and the thought of being more than coworkers is an appealing one. But there’s just one problem, it’s against the rules.

So what do they do? Will Ellie and Benny risk everything they've worked for to give love a chance? Or will fear of breaking the rules ruin everything and send Ellie running back to her old life?

Grayson is an up and coming author, with a heart for sweet stories filled with hope and humor. Her debut Thinking Out Loud is the first of many to come in her author journey. When she isn't writing, she can be found working as a Registered Nurse or spending time with her husband and daughter. You can find more information about Grayson on Instagram @authorglong or authorgraylong.com.

This was such a great debut for Grayson Long with so many things to love!

First of all, mental health is a huge part of this story. As someone who deals with various mental health issues myself, I always appreciate that representation, especially when done well. This one certainly was that. I loved that Ellie was a mental health professional who knew all the tricks and such, and still found herself struggling... which I think is such a great reminder that mental illness can and does affect anyone. While taking on some heavier topics, it does still have enough comedic moments to balance it out well. 

Ellie and Benny were just the sweetest together. Their attraction and chemistry are absolutely evident right away and I couldn't get enough of them together. I loved how Benny saw Ellie at her worst and loved every piece of her regardless. It was such a genuine and sweet romance! 

While I loved the romance in the story, I have to say the sense of community really stuck out for me on this one. This is a workplace/teacher-principal romance and I really just loved everything about the school community. The staff had such a fun dynamic, and I loved seeing how Benny and Ellie really cared about the students. The side characters caught my attention nearly as much as the main characters, making the story all that much more enjoyable. I really hope to see more from these characters in future books! 

If you love a good workplace romance, this is definitely one worth checking out. 

Thinking Out Loud is a closed-door romance with kisses only. There is some minor language throughout the story. 


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