At First Spite by Olivia Dade

A Delightful Romp through Love, Laughter, and Lust in “At First Spite” by Olivia Dade

Olivia Dade’s “At First Spite” is a delightful rollercoaster of emotions, seamlessly blending absurd situations, humor, and serious issues such as depression and fatphobia. The author’s unique ability to infuse a narrative with both depth and levity shines through, making this book an enjoyable and unexpected experience.

The heart of the story revolves around Athena, whose life takes an unexpected turn when she’s dumped by her fiancé just days before their wedding. Dade skillfully navigates the aftermath of this heartbreak, revealing the complexities of relationships, familial ties, and personal growth. While the plot might not be overly intricate, the character development is masterfully executed, keeping readers invested in the journey of Athena and those around her.

Athena’s move next door to her ex-fiancé and his brother sets the stage for a humorous and touching exploration of love and self-discovery. The dynamic between Athena and Matthew, her ex’s brother, is the beating heart of the narrative. Dade crafts a slow-burning romance that blooms into a beautiful connection, showcasing the evolution of their relationship from initial attraction to unwavering support and genuine care.

The exploration of serious topics like depression is handled with sensitivity and authenticity, adding depth to the narrative without overshadowing the overall lighthearted tone of the book. Dade masterfully weaves these elements into the fabric of the story, creating a harmonious blend of humor and emotion.

The intimate scenes in the novel contribute to its allure, providing a sensual and tasteful exploration of desire and connection. The sex tropes, while specific, add a layer of relatability and authenticity to the characters, making their journey even more engaging for readers.

“At First Spite” is a testament to Olivia Dade’s storytelling prowess, seamlessly combining elements of humor, emotion, and sensuality. The slow-growing affection between the characters, coupled with the well-executed exploration of serious themes, makes this novel a thoroughly enjoyable read. Dade’s ability to balance the ridiculous with the heartfelt creates a narrative that is sweet, funny, poignant, and undeniably sexy. This review, based on a complimentary copy of the novel, offers a sincere and objective perspective on the book’s merits.

Book Stats:
Rating: 4/5
Series: Harlot’s Bay #1
Tropes: Neighbors, ex-brother, forbidden, Small Town, nerdy heroine, rom com, plus size heroine, rivals to lovers, close proximity, virgin hero
CW: depression, grief, loss of young brother off page in the past

Other Olivia Dade Books reviewed by Becky