Book Review: Birthday Girl by Penelope Douglas

This book pleasantly surprised me! It was such a refresher, such a quick, fun read. I found the excerpt at the end of Credence, and since I wanted to give the author a second chance, I went for it. I didn’t regret it one bit. My book review of Birthday Girl by Penelope Douglas is going to be pretty short, as I thoroughly enjoyed it.

(Review contains potential spoilers.)

Book review of Birthday Girl by Penelope Douglas

Birthday Girl official cover art
Birthday Girl official cover art

My rating: ★★★★★ (5/5)

Summary: Jordan Hadley is about to go to university, but she’s already drowning in bills. Moving in with her longtime best friend-slash-boyfriend, Cole, didn’t help. On the night of her birthday, Jordan goes to the theater to wait for Cole after her work shift. But she drops her phone, spills her drink, and the only person to help her with her little mess is a much older man. They end up watching the movie together, but Cole still isn’t there to pick her up afterwards. It turns out that Cole ended up at the police station, and they got evicted from their apartment because of the wild birthday party Cole threw. Cole’s father offers them temporary housing… but Cole’s father is the stranger from the theater.

Genre: Romance, Comedy, Drama

Audience: Adult

Themes/potential trigger warnings: age gap, sexual scenes

Fun Writing Style, Even Funnier Characters

I already liked Douglas’ writing style in Credence, so I knew there was at least going to be one aspect of the book I’d enjoy. I like how she keeps things simple while describing characters with their own quirks and mannerisms. They all seemed real, and I must say that in this book, the side characters were outstanding. While I enjoyed Jordan, Pike, and even Cole sometimes, I knew the best was about to come whenever Dutch or Cam appeared. The snarky comments and their “get real” attitude were very rom-com.

Well Developed Romance

While the age gap trope is fun to me and something I wish people would write more about, I was scared that Jordan and Pike would just jump in bed together. I’m really thankful they didn’t. There was no cheating on Cole, and the author really took her time to develop Jordan and Pike separately first, and then together. It made the outcome even more satisfying. While the ending is a little cheesy, I felt it was fitting, given how the characters were crafted.

Definitely a book I recommend.