Linnea Larson is appalled when a Hollywood hunk is hired to star opposite her at her family’s theatre. Known for playing a superhero onscreen, and a super stud off screen, doesn’t convince her he has what it takes to share her stage. Due to a pact with her best friend, she never dates actors.
Despite his fame, fortune and an endless string of women, Luke is dissatisfied with his picture perfect life. He escapes to his theatrical roots to find wary cast mates, a best friend convinced the show will ruin Luke’s career and an adorable costar who refuses to date him.
Far from Hollywood’s spotlights, can he find happiness in the footlights of a tiny Theatre? Despite Luke dragging her into his paparazzi nightmare, Linnea can’t deny his irresistible charm. Their fling has a guaranteed expiration date. Why risk the inevitable heartbreak? Their job is to act like they’re in love, but will they decide it’s worth the leap to fall in love for real?
Act Like We’re In Love by Christi Barth is such a fun read. Linnea and Luke are the perfect match for each other but every time things seem to be going their way something happens to knock things off course.
Linnea loves the theater more than anything and she is concerned when her father brings in a ringer for their production of Guys and Dolls to drive up ticket sales. Times are tough all over and Linnea’s family theater is suffering like everything else. She has some ideas to help revenue but her father doesn’t want to hear her ideas, he has everything under control.
After taking some time off to care for his mother, things have been “off” for Luke since he came back to the acting world. It doesn’t hold the appeal it once did for him. He doesn’t know what’s wrong and wants time to figure out what is bothering him. He gets his best friend/business manager to book him a stint working at a local theater so he can get back to his roots.
The characters are complex and interesting. Linnea is a diehard theater actress trying to save her family’s business. She and her best friend have a pact that they won’t date actors and she is determined to stick to it, even though Luke is very tempting. She loves her family but feels like her father doesn’t trust her with the theater and won’t listen to her ideas. Luke comes across as a playboy, love ‘em and leave ‘em type but there is definitely more to him than meets the eye. The chemistry between Luke and Linnea is instant and the sexual tension is evident from the beginning.
The supporting characters are a hoot. I love Ingrid and Wes too. They have great chemistry and play off of each other well. Ingrid is a free spirit that is just the right medicine to loosen Wes up and he makes her crazy because he doesn’t succumb to her like all her previous boyfriends. The scenery is fun too. I love the theater and the descriptions of everything tied to it. The back story is appropriate; it gives you enough information but doesn’t overload the story with past events.
One of things I loved about this story is that every time Luke and Linnea try to get together, something happens to mess it up, whether it’s a photo op for a politician or a conniving stalker. One of my favorite scenes was the scene at the ballpark when they are in the box. It’s the point Linnea realizes that she is falling in love with Luke and is willing to fight for him.
One thing that distracted me a little, but didn’t really take away from the story was the fact that there is more or less a sub story going on at the same time with Wes. He and Ingrid are really as much a part of the main story as Luke and Lienna and sometimes it was a little too much going on. I would like to see what happens to them after he starts his own agency, will she finally loosen him up and get him out of his high dollar suits?