Review: Muffin Top (The Hartigans #2)

I received this ARC from the author and Social Butterfly PR in exchange for an honest review.

Muffin Top, a hot romantic comedy from USA Today bestselling author Avery Flynn is available now!

The only thing about me that’s a size zero is the filter on my mouth. I’ve got a big personality, a big rack, and a big number on the scale. And I’m perfectly fine with that.

But when some random guy suggests I might not be eating alone if I’d ordered a salad instead of a hamburger I’m shocked silent, which is a feat, trust me.

That brings us to one sexy fireman named Frankie Hartigan. He’s hot. He’s funny… And he’s just apologized for being late for our “date” then glared at the fat-shaming jerk. Next thing I know, he’s sitting down and ordering himself dinner.

I have no problem telling him I don’t need a pity date . . . unless of course it’s to my high school reunion next week. Oops where did that last bit come from? And what do I do now that he’s said yes?!

Because this is no make-over story, and I think Frankie is using me for something. I just have to figure out what…

My rating: 4 Stars

As soon as I read the synopsis for Muffin Top, I knew I wanted to read it and when I read an excerpt, I was salivating for the book. I was so happy when I learned that I'd been chosen to get an ARC. I read it as quickly as I could in only a couple of days. I loved Muffin Top and it is one of my favorite romance reads this year. Frankie and Lucy were delicious together and the both of them cracked me up on more than one occasion. The whole road trip thing and going to Lucy's class reunion just added this fun factor to the book and made it that much better.

Lucy was such a strong character who knew what she wanted and went for it. It was clear she was insecure about her weight by the way she always joked about it and had something derogatory to say about it before anyone else could say something. She didn't feel as if she deserved Frankie or ever felt that he could actually like her. She was always questioning his motives and dismissing the things he did. I did find that annoying but after finding out what happened between her parents and being bullied and teased in school, I could understand why she acted the way she did. I still loved her and she's one of my favorite female leads. Frankie was funny and sweet and not what you would have thought of a big, red-headed Irish man. He was fiercely loyal to his family and did whatever he could to protect them being the oldest of seven children. He was funny and I liked that he didn't deny his feelings for Lucy for long. He tried to get her to see that he actually did like her but her insecurities and her need to not be hurt like her father, made her push him away. The two of them together was steamy and amazing. they fit together perfectly and were hilarious in their banter. I enjoyed the secondary characters as well. The siblings of Frankie that the reader met were awesome and funny. I will say Gus the dog was my favorite secondary character. That dog had me laughing out loud on multiple occasions. I enjoyed Lucy's father as well.

Flynn did a great job of exploring the insecurities that women have to deal with if they are not model size and how men and women may look at them. She created a character that you could relate to and feel sympathy for and outraged on her behalf when you learned of the things she had to deal with because she wasn't a size 0. Lucy was flawed and wanted love but could not figure out how to get that or accept it when it came into her life. Flynn was masterful in her approach to this story. I liked seeing how Frankie started feeling insecure and wanting more from life when he found out how he was viewed around town. Frankie and Lucy were both working through things and had to figure out how to let themselves and Flynn did a marvelous job bringing it all together so that it worked out for them.

Overall, this was a fun and fast read that I am glad I read. It was entertaining and helped me lose myself for a few hours. I cannot wait to read more books by Avery Flynn! Be sure to get your copy of Muffin Top, available now!


The temptation to say “Yes, Frankie, please squash him like a bug while I clap and watch” was so, so strong—like, the guys who pull semi trucks with their teeth strong. Instead, Lucy played along with her best friend’s fiancé’s brother— OMG, that was now the name of her imaginary all-girl ska band—and smiled sweetly up at him.

“He was bothered by my dinner order, honey.”

“Really?” Frankie looked down at her plate, over to the dipshit, and then right at her. There was no missing the devil in his eyes right before he turned his attention back to the other man. “What’s wrong with what my girl’s eating?”

Mr. In Her Business blanched. Literally. The color drained out of his face so fast that he resembled one of those swipe right before and after photos on makeover blogs. How in the hell she managed to not laugh out loud she had no frickin’ clue.

“N-n-nothing,” the man stuttered.

Nope. He was not getting off that easily.

She looked up at Frankie, still standing next to her chair, his big hand braced on the back of it, and said in the clueless voice that anyone with a brain would know meant there was danger ahead, “He said I should have ordered a salad, then I might have a chance to move from a five to an eight. I’m a five because I have great tits.”

Thunderous didn’t begin to describe the dark look of pure vengeance that crossed Frankie’s face, making even the freckles that crossed over the bridge of his nose look scary. Mr. Buttinsky made a little squeaking noise that reminded Lucy of the sound of air coming out of a balloon when someone pulled the tip taut as it was deflating. Frankie took a step forward, menace vibrating off of him in waves. The other guy didn’t bother to say a word, he just took off, weaving his way at a fast clip through the crowded bar and out the front door. Lucy liked to imagine that he peed his pants a little as he did so.

“Thanks, Frankie,” she said to the man still staring at the departing figure of Mr. Peed His Pants. “I owe you one.”

Her ginger knight in well-fitting jeans and a T-shirt made some kind of noise that maybe was a response in the affirmative. It sounded kinda like “no problem.” Whatever. She was used to that from guys. She was only of interest until a hotter, skinnier, or prettier woman came along. It

was the universal fat chick cloaking device.

Determined not to let it annoy her as much as it usually would, she turned back to her jalapeño cheeseburger, spicy fries, and soda. Now she could finally enjoy her dinner in peace.

Alas, it wasn’t meant to be. Frankie clunked down a three-fourths filled mug of beer on the other side of her table, pulled out the chair across from her, and sat down. Before she could even ask what he was doing, he waved the waitress over and told her he wanted whatever Lucy was eating, plus an extra order of fries and another beer. Once she’d left, he turned his attention to Lucy and gave her what could only be described as a vibrator smile. She named it that in her head—thankfully only in her head—because she now had a desperate need for her vibrator and maybe a fresh pack of batteries.

“You’re not gonna make me eat alone now that we’re on a date, are you?” he asked, swiping one of her fries.

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