September 29, 2021

ARC REVIEW: The Better Bully by Roxanne Tully

The Better Bully by Roxanne Tully
Rating: 3.5 Stars
Release Date: February 16, 2021 (eBook) September 16, 2021 (audiobook)
Format: eBook and Audiobook

The Better Bully by Roxanne Tully is a quick and enjoyable sports romance read with a slow burn relationship and a happily ever after ending for the two main characters. 


Reed and Violet are both very complex characters. Both of them have compassionate sides and would do anything for the people they care about, but with what happened in high school it takes a while for them to be open to learning that about the other person. Reed’s cocky and arrogant persona as the captain of the football team hides the softness he previously only showed his sister and some past family issues. Violet was hurt by her previous boyfriend and transferred schools to escape everything surrounding that, but she’s working on her insecurities and coming into her own person. 


In my opinion, The Better Bully reads more like an enemies-to-lovers romance than a full-fledged “bully” romance. Yes, Reed did make Violet’s life miserable in high school. But he put a hard ban on ever bullying her physically and stepped in when others took things too far. You also learn why he made the decision to ban Violet from going anywhere near the football stadium during his last year, which gave him more of a redeemable quality in my eyes. I certainly don’t like what he did, but the reasoning behind his decision makes sense. 


With regards to the narration, there was some room for improvement. I would have LOVED to hear more bite in Colleen Daley’s narration, especially when she was snapping at Reed during the story. The same goes for Micah Matthews, who was narrating Reed’s parts. The performance left me wanting, they didn’t produce the same tension I felt when I was reading the eBook. 


I hope Roxanne Tully does a book covering Max and Piper’s story in the future. I would enjoy getting to see how their romance plays out given how much it was played up in this book. I would recommend this book to adult romance readers who love the enemies-to-lovers trope, don’t mind lots of sports references, and are fans of happily ever afters. 


Thank you to the author and Midnight Readers Book Promotion for allowing me to listen to an early audiobook listening copy (ALC) at no cost to myself. I voluntarily read and reviewed The Better Bully; all opinions expressed in the review are my own and not influenced in any way. 





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