Review: Level Me Up by Lauren Helms

Posted March 22nd 2018 by The Faerie Queen in Blog Tours, Reviews / 0 Comments

Review: Level Me Up by Lauren Helms

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Level Me Up (Gamer Boy, #1)

Review: Level Me Up by Lauren HelmsAuthor: Lauren Helms
Narrator: Lacey Gilleran
Series: Gamer Boy #1
Also in this series: One More Round
Publisher: Lauren Helms
Release date: June 5th 2017
Genres: New Adult, Contemporary, Romance
Pages: 230
Length: 5 hours 46 minutes
Format: Audiobook
Source: Audible

I voluntarily read and reviewed an advanced copy of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

Add to TBR: Goodreads
Purchase: Amazon UK | Amazon US | The Book Depository | Audible

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Star rating:
Heat rating: two-flames

The last thing Morgan Lawson is looking for when attending Comic-Con is love. But even prior to exchanging first words, Morgan is drawn to Dex, a drop-dead sexy gamer boy who lives and breathes video games. Before she realizes it, Morgan finds herself caught up in all things Dex.

Dex Roberts knows from the moment he first sees Morgan, he wants more. He falls hard and fast but isn’t surprised when his job as a professional video gamer takes a toll on their relationship.

Once Morgan decides what truly makes her happy, there’s no time to waste. But without warning, life threatens to destroy what both Morgan and Dex want most... each other.

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The Faerie Queen’s review

I have found my niche: gamer romances. I’m a gamer myself (though not of FPS… first person shooters), and the Boyf loves his DOTA2. I’m only just discovering that there’s a whole subgenre of geeky new adult and adult contemporary romance. And this even fits the sports romance theme this month, as esports is a legit thing! (It brought in $1.5b in revenue in 2017, and The International 2017 winners won $10,862,683. That’s the biggest DOTA2 major, and yes, I watched some of the games with the Boyf.)

Everything started out really great. I started listening on my way to a convention – RARE18 London, a huge romance event in fact. I thought it was fitting when the book starts at ComicCon (and I am actually going to the London Film & Comic Con with my boyfriend in July). Bookish Morgan tags along with her friend to SDCC, where she meets Dex, a professional gamer. They cross paths a few times, an adorable connection clear from the start. It made me all giddy, as gamers and readers are good matches (and I would know).

They learn they both live in Chicago, so everything keeps going well. But Morgan is really insecure, and the regular travelling that Dex has to do for his job puts a strain on the relationship. Yes, ok, Morgan did take it quite hard, and some might find it annoying. I, however, found it relatable. I don’t care what age someone is; if you’ve never been in a long-term relationship before, or if you’ve had previous experiences that affect your ability to trust people…well, you’re going to have some teething problems. Plus, at the start of a relationship, when you’re still developing a bond, it’s normal to be working out your feelings and your dynamic together. So while I was shaking my head sometimes at Morgan, I could also empathise. She’s a work-in-progress, as are all of us.

And you know what? Dex was a sweetheart about it all. He really cared about Morgan, and while other men might have found some of her behaviours a bit intense, he understood where she was coming from. Different people have different needs, and that’s ok; it’s all about meeting your match, and that’s what Morgan and Dex found.

This was more of a sweet romance, a lot more innocent than new adult romances typically are. While there was some sizzle, it was all fairly tame and centred around feelings of love, understanding, and belonging, as well as being brave enough to fight for love when things aren’t honeymoon perfect.

The end was unexpected and dramatic, but it tied up nicely. Plus, groundwork was definitely being laid for more books in the series, and I must admit I’m curious. Bring on the gamers!

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Listen to the first chapter!

If you like that taster and want to continue, you can find the book on Audible. And if you’re not yet a member… get your first book for free!

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About Lauren Helms

Author Lauren Helms has been an avid reader from a young age. After starting a book review site, that launched her fully into the book world, she decided to take the plunge and write her first novel. Since she was working for a video game strategy guide publisher at the time, she decided to mix what she knew best, video games and romance. Jumping all in, she joined NaNoWrimo and a month later had a 50K word first draft. Lauren lives in Indianapolis, IN with her video game playing husband, two little girl book nerds, and a little boy who will hopefully be a gamer boy too some day!

About Lacey Gilleran

Lacey is a voice actor and audiobook narrator/producer from Connecticut. Her credits include audiobooks like Level Me Up, Up for Grabs, The After of Us, The Summer of Lost Wishes, and The Boy I Hate. She has over 12 years of experience in audio and video production, and holds a Masters degree in Digital Multimedia Production from Sacred Heart University in Fairfield Connecticut. When Lacey isn't recording audiobooks, she's managing social media and marketing at LeftField Media for events like Awesome Con and Rose City Comic Con, or fangirling about Star Wars.

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