Blog Tour, Excerpt & ARC Review: Bad at Love by Karina Halle

Bad at Love, an all-new contemporary STANDALONE by New York Times Bestselling author Karina Halle is LIVE!!!



Amazon US  |  Amazon UK  |  Paperback

(Free in Kindle Unlimited)


She’s bad at love, but he’s even worse…

Marina is hot, blonde, and wickedly smart, but when it comes to men? She’s hopeless. Between her quirks and her lack of filter, there isn’t a man in Los Angeles that will stick around after the third date.

Her handsome, charming friend Lazarus has the opposite problem. Everyone wants to be his girlfriend, but he gets bored and moves on quickly.

There’s only one way to figure out why neither of them has cracked this love thing– they’ll date each other. On paper, it’s the perfect experiment. But in reality, things between Marina and Laz get complicated quickly.

They might be bad at love, but they are even worse at being friends.



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4 “I’m your weirdo” stars

I love this book! A fun, sexy, standalone friends-to-lovers romance with wonderfully quirky characters and a chemistry-filled, heartfelt love story. I laughed, I swooned, and I fanned myself at all of the hotness, and I had a great time reading this one.

And before I start my review, take a moment to fawn all over that cover, because it’s just perfect. It IS Laz and Marina, and it captures their spirits so beautifully *dreamy sigh*. Anyway, on to the good stuff.

Laz and Marina are bad at love. Laz is a “serial monogamist” who bounces from girlfriend to girlfriend, never allowing himself to be single, but never fully investing in his relationships either. Whereas Marina can never get past the third date. When they meet, Marina is instantly attracted to sexy poet and rocker Laz, and his English accent, but of course he has a girlfriend, but there is an easiness between them which becomes a natural friendship. Four years later and they have become the best of friends, but they’re still both bad at love.

“I wish it was as easy as this”
“As what?”
“You and me. Talking. I wish the guys I dated got me the same way that you get me.”
He grows silent for a moment and I look over at him. He’s frowning, his attention focused on the road. “Maybe you’re just dating the wrong guys,” he finally says.

When Laz finds himself single (for a change), he suggests to Marina that they ‘date’ each other. Going on real dates, acting as if they don’t know each other and behave as they usually would on a date so they can give each other advice to get out of their dating ruts. And as they really start to open up, that’s when things begin to get complicated.

“I want to find a guy. I want to fall in love. I want a future with someone, maybe marriage and babies, maybe right now all I need is to have someone’s arms around me as I fall asleep. I want love. I feel its absence in my life, every day.”
You’re breaking my heart, sweet girl.
Her words are gutting me right now. Here in my car, Marina is opening up her soul to me in ways she hasn’t before and I’m…floored by it.
I want her to have all that. I want her to know that…fuck. I love her. I care for her. As a friend though, and I know that’s not what she’s talking about.

Laz and Marina are fantastic together. They laugh, they joke, and they just get each other. They both have their quirks, which make them incredibly endearing, and I love how they appreciate their ‘weirdo-ness’ and the things about each other that others find ‘different’. They are so much fun, and their banter and flirting is fantastic, and balances out the deep and meaningful moments really nicely. It’s so easy between them and as they begin to spend time together in a way they haven’t before, long-buried feelings start to emerge and everything begins to change.

His body pressed against mine, our mouths joined, the heat we created, that felt right. That felt more than right. That’s the us that should have always been.

Her eyes, her skin, her lips.
Her fucking soul, that pure light that comes from within her, shines through all that darkness that shrouds her. I feel like I’m one step closer to possessing it, something I never knew I needed.

Just writing this review I’m reliving all of the chemistry all over again and it has me all tingly. I could feel everything that was happening between these two. The feels are there, and the sexual tension is sensational as it builds to the inevitable and oh holy damn, it’s hot! With all of that experience, Laz is a bit of a sex-god, and the sexy time is steaming!

I want to feel him again, taste him again, hold him again. I want to see what he can do when we’re both free of restraints, free of the lines we’ve drawn up around each other but never dared to cross.

But as quickly as it all start to happen for them, it isn’t a sudden thing. There has always been an attraction, but it’s one that neither of them have acted on. Their fall is both surprising for them but absolutely natural, and I felt it every step of the way.

This shift that grows bigger and bigger each day, like two fault-lines sliding against each other, inches at first until, over time, you can’t bridge the gap. You can only fall into the void between the people you used to be to each other.
Marina will never stop being everything to me. She always was. But now…she’s becoming more. She’s no longer a part of my life, she is my life.

But as good as things are between them, there are still demons that need to be wrestled. It’s emotional and angsty and heartbreaking, but anything worth having is worth fighting for. Laz and Marina just need to figure that out.

I really enjoyed this book. It was fun yet still with lots of heart, and the book had a great feel to it. That’s because Karina Halle’s books always have a unique feel to them that is something uniquely hers. In this case, I think Marina’s quirkiness made this book something really special, especially when mixed with Laz’s easygoing, accepting nature. They are so perfect together, and as their relationship changed, it all just felt right. There is some drama, which is tied in nicely, and it all finishes off beautiful with an epilogue that left me grinning like an idiot.

“I love you. I’ve always loved you. And I am absolutely, brilliantly in love with you.”

I loved it. 4 stars!

An Advanced Review Copy was generously provided by the author in exchange for an honest review.



The place is called Tanner Smiths and is one of those trendy bars with a prohibition theme. It’s packed and dark and there’s a small dancefloor by the door so that when you walk in, you’re sucked into a group of people grooving all up in your space. Beyonce blares from the female DJ in the corner and everyone is drunk and

“I approve of the vibe,” I say to Laz.

“What?” he yells back mockingly over the noise, cupping his ear. Then he leans in, close. Very close. “What you havin’ to drink, sweet girl?”

His breath is hot on my ear and I momentarily close my eyes, letting the feeling sink along my skin, down my back, all the way to my toes. “Anything,” I manage to say.

I open my eyes and his face is still at my neck, lips at my ear. “I had no idea you were so easy to please,” he murmurs and I swear his lips are grazing my skin.  Goosebumps spread and I’m hot and cold all at once.

My throat feels thick as I speak. “Only when it comes to drinks. Anything else, you might have to work at it.”

“Is that so?” he says, pulling back enough to look me in the eye.

There’s fire inside him. God, how I want to burn.

“We’ll have to see, won’t we?” I tell him.

His languid gaze drops to my lips, his nostrils flaring with impatience.

Fuck, do it, just fucking kiss me.

Kiss me.

Kiss me.

He leans all the way back, gives my hand another squeeze before letting go.  “Don’t you dare go anywhere.”

“Bossy,” I comment, my stomach summersaulting like crazy.

“You have no idea,” he says. Then he winks, a bit of a smile, and heads down to the bar to place the order.

I watch him. I watch him and I watch the girls in the bar watching him and I know tonight, tonight he’s mine. I have him.

I’ve never felt so alive before, a swarm of electricity underneath my skin, my heart happy, happy, happy with anticipation, knowing what might finally happen between us.


*oooooh… chills!*


Meet Karina

Karina Halle is a former travel writer and music journalist and The New York Times, Wall Street Journal and USA Today Bestselling author of The Pact, Love, in English, The Artists Trilogy, Dirty Angels and over 20 other wild and romantic reads. She lives on an island off the coast of British Columbia with her husband and her rescue pup, where she drinks a lot of wine, hikes a lot of trails and devours a lot of books.

Halle is represented by the Root Literary and is both self-published and published by Simon & Schuster and Hachette in North America and in the UK.

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