REVIEW: Lonely for You Only by Monica Murphy

Posted February 8th, 2024 by in Blog, Contemporary Romance, New Adult, Review / 7 comments

In Lonely for You Only by Monica Murphy, Wealthy heiress Scarlett Lancaster’s decadent eighteenth birthday party was a raving success–just not in the way she thought it would be. Instead of finally cementing her relationship with a guy she’s been crushing on for a few years, Scarlett finds herself in the arms of former boy band member Tate Ramsey. And kissing him. Unfortunately, or maybe fortunately, their sexy kiss was captured by a journalist which, when released online, sent their names skyrocketing on every social media platform in existence. While it did boost her name (and followers count), Scarlett is happily surprised to find out that it also created interest in Tate’s more mature voice and persona. What she didn’t expect was to realize they were considered a package deal: in order for him to get a record contract, she would have to pose as his girlfriend to the public.

“I believe in you,” I say, my voice firm. “You can do whatever you set your heart on. Conquer whatever challenge comes your way.”
His smile is faint. “Right now, all I can think about is conquering you.”

Tate has been waiting on a chance to prove himself as a capable singer and songwriter for years. After cleaning up his act–and distancing himself from Los Angeles–he gets the break of a lifetime. Performing at Scarlett’s opulent birthday bash was wild. The steamy kiss with the heiress was even more crazy. But it’s when Tate is offered a new recording gig that the crazy train suddenly speeds ahead, full steam. And it all hinges on Scarlett agreeing to enter into a fake relationship with him during the recording process to keep their popularity soaring. Getting her to agree was just the first step. What happens afterward manages to change their lives forever, testing their newfound friendship, growing feelings, and pushing them nearly to their breaking points. But when the dust settles, Tate has a feeling he and Scarlett will still be standing strong together.

“I’m more than just an heiress,” she retorts.
I lean in close, my mouth hovering above hers once more. “Prove it.”

A new adult romance about the roller coaster that is social media, the many sides of fame, and a fake relationship that quickly became real, LONELY FOR YOU ONLY was an angsty read from Monica Murphy.

‘We may have signed an agreement to pretend to be together, but there’s nothing phony about what’s happening between us.’

CW: View Spoiler »

Part of the Lancaster Prep series, but a book that can be read as a standalone, LONELY FOR YOU ONLY took fake dating in a very modern direction. Author Monica Murphy touched upon how the use of social media and creating the sense of a true relationship through strategic appearances and photo ops can be useful in the public eye. But it can also backfire if not handled carefully.

Murphy did a nice job building the tension between Tate and Scarlett, layering in angst and the craving for approval from those around them. They each had their own reasons for wanting that attention. Tate wanted to redeem himself in the public eye and get a second shot at a music career. Scarlett wanted to make a name for herself on her own, without her wealthy family’s name paving the way.

I’ll admit that I had moments when I was not so impressed with either main character. Tate could be smug and self-absorbed. And naive Scarlett (so, SO naive) even pointed out herself when she became whiny like the true spoiled heiress she was. But I loved that this was written in dual POV. We got to see the disparity between Scarlett and Tate. She was quite sheltered and young–having just graduated high school–and was ready to become her own person, to not just be known as a Lancaster.

Tate was only twenty-one, but he was jaded from his tumultuous teen years as a member of a successful boy band who spun out of control due to addiction. Tate went from making millions to currently having to scrimp and save. Murphy showed the contrast in not only Tate and Scarlett’s social and financial lives but also in their world experiences. It made for an interesting dynamic between them while adding a few complications to overcome to find their HEA–which they did in a sweet, over the top way.

QOTD: Monica Murphy included a huge, uber romantic “grand gesture” at the end of this book. Are you a fan of this element in love stories?

Book Info:

Publication: Published: February 6th, 2024 | by Blackstone Publishing | Lancaster Prep

From New York Times bestselling author and BookTok sensation Monica Murphy comes a swoon-worthy new adult romance full of love songs.

Young heiress Scarlett Lancaster is delighted when her father tells her he hired a famous pop star and former boy band member to play at her eighteenth birthday. But delight becomes utter disappointment when it turns out he wasn’t talking about Harry Styles. No, Scarlett’s dad hired Tate Ramsey, former lead singer of the band Five Car Pileup, who hasn’t been popular for years.

Tate, after years of alcohol- and drug-fueled partying, is sober and ready for a comeback. He is in top form at Scarlett’s party and blows the audience away with his performance—though Scarlett herself still isn’t impressed. But when they talk after he leaves the stage, their encounter ends in a kiss that surprises them both—and immediately goes viral.

The viral kiss and the video of Tate singing at the party do wonders for both of their burgeoning careers. So after some careful negotiation, the two of them agree to start a fake relationship. But before long they discover their feelings might not be fake after all …



7 Responses to “REVIEW: Lonely for You Only by Monica Murphy”

  1. Amy R

    QOTD: Monica Murphy included a huge, uber romantic “grand gesture” at the end of this book. Are you a fan of this element in love stories? yes

  2. Glenda M

    Most of the time I am a fan of the grand gesture, but there are times when it just doesn’t work for me. Thanks for the review!