REVIEW: The Guy on the Left by Kate Stewart

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Contemporary Romance

Stand Alone

Designer: Q Design



It started with a lie. A night of blurred lines between a teacher and a student.

I wasn’t her student, yet it was the single most defining night of my life.

I’ve never been the man she thinks I am.

Most people have no idea about the life I’ve lived or the words that ring true when it comes to me—still waters run deep.

But you’d be hard-pressed to find a coed on the TGU campus who knows otherwise…because I’ve never corrected them.

The clock is ticking down, it’s Fourth and Inches with the ball inside the one-yard line and the focus is on me, The Guy on the Left. I’ve never felt like a football god, inside I’m…just Troy.

It’s time to set the record straight.

For my son, I‘ll find the strength.

In her eyes, I’m determined to gain redemption.

I will have them both, even if I have to take my eye off the ball. 

*The Guy on the Left is a stand alone novel in the Underdog Series. This is Troy’s story.

My Review

In Kate Stewart’s The Guy on the Right, readers were introduced to Troy Jenner, the ‘guy on the left’, but we met him through Theo Houseman’s eyes, not his own, and for that reason, readers only saw the part of Troy’s personality that Theo wanted us to see or maybe what Theo saw as completely contrary to himself. Either way, we were given a bias perspective and led to perceive Troy in the exact light that the main characters in the first book wanted us to view him, which means that Troy appeared to be nothing but a womanizing douchebag – a guy who only wanted one thing from girls and didn’t mind doing whatever needed to be done to achieve his goal.

It’s amazing what a change of perspective does for an outsider’s view of someone and now that readers are privy to Troy’s own thoughts and the reasons behind his actions, it’s clear that he was misjudged or perhaps simply shown as one-dimensional, but this time, we see him in all his glory, which is exactly how a hero like him deserves to be characterized because it’s clear there is way more to this complicated guy and while the young guy he was, was not completely honest or upfront, the way he transforms himself to be someone Clarissa and Dante deserve is what truly makes him an amazing book boyfriend. 

In my opinion, there’s nothing like a father fighting for his son…to have a relationship with him…to show him just how much he’s wanted and needed. Troy missed out on the beginning years of Dante’s life due to a lie that categorically changed many people’s lives, which means he has a lot to make up for, and that’s exactly what he wants to do, so when he finally gets to be a constant presence in his son’s life, those scenes are incredibly rich with feelings of love and devotion.

There are times in the story where I truly didn’t understand why Clarissa continued to punish Troy for his past mistakes. Don’t get me wrong, I completely understood the hurt and anger she felt when she found out that he lied to her, but he proves himself time and time again when he comes back into her life, so I just couldn’t wrap my brain around the fact that she refused to see just how much Troy has grown up and that he deserves a chance, not just with his son but with her as well.

There’s something about second chance romances that stand out among the other romantic tropes, and I know I’ve said numerous times how a foundation between the hero and heroine is an aspect of these stories that I adore, but it truly solidifies the connection, and in the case of Troy and Clarissa, it allows for an understanding of the slow burn of their second chance, especially given the fact that their one-night stand all those years ago created Dante who both would do anything for.

The Guy on the Left is such a great story, and while I agree that it illustrates, in some ways, Troy’s redemption, what I think it does more so is demonstrate the man he is and has worked to be, not just to prove himself to Clarissa or even himself, but to be the man who Dante needs him to be.

4.5 Poison Apples 

USA Today bestselling author and Texas native, Kate Stewart, lives in North Carolina with her husband, Nick, and her naughty beagle, Sadie. She pens messy, sexy, angst-filled contemporary romance, as well as romantic comedy and erotic suspense. Kate’s title Drive was named one of the best romances of 2017 by The New York Daily News and Huffington Post. Drive was also a finalist in the Goodreads Choice awards for best contemporary romance of 2017. Her works have been featured in USA TODAY, BuzzFeed, and translated in five languages.

Kate is a lover of all things ’80s and ’90s, especially John Hughes films and rap. She dabbles a little in photography, can knit a simple stitch scarf for necessity, and on occasion, does very well at whiskey.

Contact Kate-

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1 Comment

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One response to “REVIEW: The Guy on the Left by Kate Stewart

  1. Pingback: The Fairest of All Book Reviews’ Year in Review and 2019 Top 22 | Fairest Of All Book Reviews

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