Take the Lead by Alexis Daria #BookReview #Contemporary #RomanceBook #DWTS

Gina Morales wants to make it big. In her four seasons on The Dance Off, she’s never even made it to the finals. But her latest partner, the sexy star of an Alaskan wilderness show, could be her chance. Who knew the strong, silent, survivalist-type had moves like that? She thinks Stone Nielson is her ticket to win it all―until her producer makes it clear they’re being set up for a showmance.

Joining a celebrity dance competition is the last thing Stone wants. However, he’ll endure anything to help his family, even as he fears revealing their secrets. While the fast pace of Los Angeles makes him long for the peace and privacy of home, he can’t hide his growing attraction for his dance partner. Neither wants to fake a romance for the cameras, but the explosive chemistry that flares between them is undeniable.

As Stone and Gina heat up the dance floor, the tabloids catch on to their developing romance. With the spotlight threatening to ruin everything, will they choose fame and fortune, or let love take the lead?


What’s it about (in a nutshell):

Take the Lead by Alexis Daria is the story of Gina Morales, a professional dancer, and Stone Neilson, a reality star, and their pairing to participate in Dance Off (which is like Dancing with the Stars in the US). They each hold many secrets, and those secrets quickly build a wall between them, but they need chemistry to win, and for that, they need to let each other in.

Actual Reading Experience:

I thought the dance competition aspect of the story was fascinating, and I felt like I was genuinely backstage learning all the ins and outs of this type of show. I loved how the unreality behind reality tv is brought to the forefront and is a significant factor in the story, especially for Stone’s story but also for the dance competition. Let’s face it; everything has a spin to maximize the number of viewers.

I loved the character of Stone. He has a pure heart, and his main goal is always to help his family, even if it costs him his dreams. I found him very relatable and authentic. However, I struggled with Gina, and I didn’t feel like her reasons justified her actions, so she just came off as mean and unapproachable to me.

There are many steamy open-door moments in this story but very few laughs. I don’t know that I would classify it as a romcom but rather a contemporary romance story.  

Read if you like:

  • Contemporary Romance
  • Dance Competitions
  • Slow-burn romances

Thank you to the publisher and NetGalley for a free advanced copy of this book to read and review.

24 Replies to “Take the Lead by Alexis Daria #BookReview #Contemporary #RomanceBook #DWTS”

    1. She was just so… well, mean… to the male lead. So you have this great guy being stomped on by this woman – it just didn’t win her any brownie points from me.


  1. I’m not a fan of straightup romance, but I do enjoy the occasional romcom. Too bad this one didn’t have more humor. Sounds like you still enjoyed it, Tessa. Nice review!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I read this one too, and felt the same about Stone. But, I did like Gina a bit more than you did. Wonderful review, Tessa.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Thanks for the insights Tessa. I have this book to read, so will be ready to fast forward through those steamy, open door scenes. Too bad Gina came across as so unlikable.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I guess I just didn’t buy into her reasoning. Maybe you will have a different experience. I know Wendy (Bashful Bookworm) liked her more than I did.

      Liked by 1 person

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