Going Up by Amanda RadleyGoing Up by Amanda Radley is a delightful thawing the ice-queen romance. It is also a story about opening your heart and taking a chance on love despite how daunting it may seem at first.

Two headstrong women plus a couple of priceless opportunities equals a world of never-ending possibilities.

The old adage was right after all—the sky is certainly the limit and Selina Hale is steadily working her way toward the top floor of Addington’s. She is hell bent on getting a promotion to the thirteenth floor as a board member and she won’t allow her oblivious boss, annoying family members, an inconvenient divorce and a homeless vagabond in the carpark to stand in the way of her imminent success.

The social services, family and friends have all failed Kate Morgan and she wound up homeless and invisible to the rest of society. She is determined to find her own way back to social and financial independence without owing a debt to anyone. Selina Hale is the last person in the world Kate would ever accept a handout from because she knows that Selina despises her own nephews. However, life has a funny way of bringing two completely different women together despite the fact that they can’t even stand each other.

Will Selina and Kate be able to put their differences and pride aside and allow their hearts to lead the way toward the love and happiness they have always desired?

The Characters

Selina Hale is the operations director at Addington’s. She has a one-track mind when it comes to getting a job done and striving for a promotion to the thirteenth floor. I’m going to come clean and admit that even though I was a bit peeved at Selina’s harsh, no-nonsense approach to her subordinates and her own relatives; I was still crushing on her because I just love a mature woman who isn’t afraid to command attention and take up space with the kind of bold confidence Selina exudes and that always makes me swoon.

Kate Morgan is living on the streets of Parbrook but she is fiercely proud and independent. From the moment Kate entered the story, I fell arse over tits in love with her because she is such a tender-hearted, understanding, fun-loving and feisty woman who is not afraid to stand up to Selina and put her in her place when she gets out of line. I really wished Kate was a real woman because I would have loved to meet her and I’m pretty sure that we would have had a friendship filled with hilarious moments and insightful conversations.

The Writing Style

I can always count on this superb author when it comes to creating unforgettable and endearing characters that I can totally relate to and fall in love with. A. E. Radley has given me beautiful descriptions of Parbrook and the quirky individuals who work at Addington’s. This author has also allowed me to peek into the hearts and minds of Selina and Kate and she did a fabulous job of portraying their unique personalities because I could easily picture them in my mind.

The Pros

Did I ever mention how much I adore ice-queens who are socially awkward and straightforward to the point where they are considered rude yet they possess a heart of pure, untainted gold? Well, forgive me if I’ve been rather lax but I must admit that I adore everything about Selina even though she is a piece of work. I got to have my cake and eat it too because this story has two strong-willed women who are like oil and water but the sizzling chemistry between them is undeniable. I also enjoyed the dry sarcasm and the witty banter between Selina and Kate. 

The Cons

I really wished this book was longer because I just finished reading this lovely story and I miss Selina and Kate already!

aprils favourite booksThe Conclusion

At first, this story may come across as a simple romance between the have and the have nots but it is so much more than that because this story emphasizes the fact that some LGBT people become homeless when they are rejected by their families. It also highlights the way society treats the underclass and impoverished people in their communities. I must say that this story touched me in ways that I can’t even describe because Kate’s anguish and isolation tugged on my heartstrings and I began to think about the numerous things that I would usually take for granted.

Excerpt from Going Up by Amanda Radley

Kate stared at the drink. She lifted her head and watched the woman walking away.

How dare she! Kate fumed. She can’t even be bothered to look at me. Or say something. Just… dropping off a drink. To make herself feel better. Make her think that she’s a decent human being when she clearly isn’t.

Kate grabbed the drink and held it up.

“No, thank you,” she called out loudly.

The woman stopped walking. She slowly turned around, a confused look on her face. A paper bag of food and a second takeaway mug were clutched in her free hand.

Kate gestured the cup up towards her, eager for her to return and take it back.

“It’s free,” the woman explained.

“I don’t want it.”

The woman paused for a few moments.

“I’ll have to call you back, Janine,” she said before hanging up her call. She approached and looked down at Kate with barely hidden disdain. “You should probably learn to accept charity, considering your situation.”

“I don’t need to accept charity from someone who can’t remember the names of her nephews and calls them ‘snivelling little runts.’”

“How dare you eavesdrop on my conver—”

“Eavesdrop? You were shouting. And I don’t want your charity. It’s not for me, it’s for you.”

The woman stared at Kate in shock before spinning on her heel and walking away. Kate lowered the cup. She debated whether she should drink it or throw it away. She took a tentative sniff.

Coffee. Probably not poisoned. But who knows?

Deciding there was no sense in wasting the drink, she took a tentative sip. The burst of bitter flavour danced across her mouth. It had been a while since she’d had a good barista-made cup of coffee. Tasteless instant powder at the shelter was all she had these days, with as much sugar as she could stomach to mask the taste and keep hunger at bay.

Maybe it had been rude to not accept the drink at first, but she’d do so again in an instant. Kate may have been homeless, but she was proud that she hadn’t lost her sense of self. She was still Kate Morgan.

When she’d lost everything, she was quick to realize that personal possessions flowed away with considerable ease. But her thoughts, feelings, personality traits, and actions were her own and could never be taken away.

Even if that sometimes meant pride caused her loss. She’d rather not have something than accept a gift from someone she couldn’t stand. 

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