Book Review: The Ground Rules by Roya Carmen

Happy Friday,  Bookworms!!!


Today I’m going to review a book that just left me SPEECHLESS. It’s on my TOP 5 of Favorites for this year for sure!!!


I just LOVE finding books like this.  Specially when I discover them before all the hype around them stars. Don’t get me wrong, I love when the books and authors I love get known and become successful, but sometimes (well, most of the times lately), when a book gets a lot of hype I sort of lose the interest in reading them. Actually when there’s a hype around a book I usually wait a bit to read it, although sometimes I read them fast, otherwise I won’t. #BookwormProblems


Well, let this review starT!!!



The Ground Rules





1. Don’t sleep around.

2. Don’t kiss and tell.

3. Be nice.

4. Don’t text or call.

5. Don’t fall in love.

The rules are simple…until they aren’t.

I have everything I ever thought I could want: a nice home, a job I love, two beautiful girls, and my husband, Gabe – my high school sweetheart who still rocks my world. If you ask anyone to describe me they would say, “Oh, Mirella? She’s such a nice girl.” And I was…until a mysterious, peculiar man and his beautiful wife enter our lives.

Weston and Bridget Hanson are no ordinary couple—they’re stunning, enigmatic, and sexy as hell. During the course of one unexpected evening, my ordinary world is turned upside down. How could it not be when Weston and Bridget propose the unthinkable? And when the unthinkable is so very tempting, giving in becomes inevitable.

It sounds so logical and simple. Just five rules and we can all have what we desire. But the heart doesn’t follow rules, and now passion, jealousy, and confusion threaten to tear everything apart.

Two beautiful couples. Five simple rules. One hot mess.




5 stars5 stars5 stars5 stars5 stars





I first discovered The Ground Rules in Goodreads. I saw someone added it to their TBR list and it really intrigued me. I asked people in some of my favorite Facebook book groups and no one had read it yet, but I just HAD to read it!


And I’m so GLAD I did!!!


THIS BOOK!!!! It’s not only  one of my Favorites for 2015, but one of the BEST books I’ve ever read! EVER!!!


The love story is supposed to be quite wrong, but it feels so right, we don’t even remember why it’s not supposed to be that way!


And yeah… It’s about swinging. Actually more like couple swaping. But there are no orgies here. It all starts when our heroine, Mirella, and her handsome husband, Gabe, go to a much needed date night to a nice restaurant and end up meeting, and having dinner with, another couple. The beautiful and elegant Bridget and Weston Hanson. From this first dinner Bridget and Gabe hit it off and start flirting with each other. And Mirella is attacted to Weston and his intelligence (he is a HOT nerd) and so is Weston, despite of him being a bit stand-offish. They have a lot in common.


What she doesn’t know (but we get from their interaction) is that Weston is pretty attracted to her as well. She can’t take him off of her had and Gabe even jokes with her. The thing is, the beautiful couple become their friends and Weston make Mirella a proposition tha shocks her, but also intrigues her. Weston and Bridget have done swinging twice before that.

But they have rules: they have to be monogamous (they can only have relations with their spouses and them), they can’t talk to their spouses about their dates, they can’t contact each other (Weston’s PA makes all the arrangements for his dates with Mirella and Bridget and Gabe’s), they can’t give gifts to each other and they CAN’T fall in love. It all seemed very easy, after all they all just wanted an adventure and a physical relationship.


We don’t get much about Gabe and Bridget’s “dates”, because our main characters are really Weston and Mirella. And I LOVED them!!! I mean, Gabe and Mirella have a good wedding, they have two girls and they have been together for eighteen years. Gabe was Mirella’s first and they love each other. And I get it isn’t fair that Mirella gets to be jealous of Gabe and Bridget while she and Weston have an even “deeper” relationship. But from what I got from the story, since the beginning Gabe and Bridget have been all over each other, sometimes even disrespectfully (in my opinion). Also, we don’t know this, but from what I got from Weston, his marriage is not as great as Mirella’s, it seems quite superficial  to me. Even though he also love his two children. I don’t know, I get a feeling Bridget doesn’t really love Weston, not as much as she loves his money anyways. Plus she is always trying to change him.


I wouldn’t call this story as a “cheating” story. The swaping is consensual and I think that if something is consensual it’s okay. The thing is, the lines are so very blurred because clearly Weston and Mirella fall in love. And for Weston I don’t know if he loves Bridget for real or not, but Mirella loves her husband, so it’s an even bigger conflict to her. Well, for Weston too because he doesn’t want to fall in love.


I don’t like Bridget at ALL. I like Gabe, but I LOVE Weston. And I LOVE Weston and Mirella, but I don’t see how they can be together, not without causing some complications and heartache. I really hope Roya Carmen sees them together thouth!!!


You all know I don’t particularly like love triangles, I started to HATE them, actually. But this book doesn’t really feel like one to me, not one of those I hate. We don’t have a wishy-washy heroine here.


I don’t know, this story is so real. And it’s so relatable, even though it’s quite different from most people’s realitly.


The Ground Rules is provocative, not only because it’s HAWT AS HELL, but it’s also thoughts-provoking. It makes us think. It’s a true mind-f*** too, withouth being dark. You shouldn’t think it’s right for them to be together, but you just CAN’T think they are meant to be!


My God! This story is GRITTY, it grips you, makes you think about how the lines get blurred, makes you want to BREAK the rules.


The story bursts with reallness and feeling. I really liked the main heroine and as I said, I’m completely in love with Weston.


Mirella is such a strong female character, she doesn’t complain, she isn’t wishy-washy, but she has flaws, like any human being. I mean, it must already be difficult when you are married and are attraced to another man and keeps thinking of him, imaging doing that with the endorsement of your own husband! I mean, as I said, Gabe is jealous of Weston. But he also doesn’t want Mirella to be jealous of Bridget. And at first he doesn’t realize how deep Mirella and Weston’s connection really is.


The Ground Rules is an incredbly well-written, thougth-provoking love story. It’s sexy, it’s edgy, it’s hot, it’s sweet and it’s completly addictive.


I can’t honestly wait for the second book. Even though it doesn’t end in a cliffhanger, the story is not done. And thank God for that, because I need more Weston.


The only thing I didn’t like, which isn’t about the story at all, is the cover. It looks like a Paranormal cover about vampires (one of my friends actually asked me if it was a vampire book). Also, I can’t decide if there is a woman and a man or two women… But then that doesn’t make a difference at all in my rating.


As soon as I was finished reading it, I already wanted to start it all over again! For two reasons: one, the story is THAT good. I didn’t want to let go. Second, I couldn’t part with these characters. I didn’t re-read it yet, but I usually don’t re-read books that I LOVE with this intensity. I mean, I’ve re-read (many many times) books that I love, but when I feel this sort of connection with a book, I love to have the feeling of reading it for the first time inside myself!! I know, I’m such a book nerd!


Really, really amazing work, Roya!!! I can’t wait for the rest of their story. It’s so intriguing and I can’t wait to be even more intrigued for what’s yet to come!!!


Meanwhile, I’m gonna find a tree to carve Weston + Carol, I mean, Mirella 4EVER!!!! LOL



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5 thoughts on “Book Review: The Ground Rules by Roya Carmen

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