Waiting in the Wings
by Tara Frejas
Genre: Romance / NA / Contemporary
Release Date: February 21, 2017
At twenty-three, theatre actress Erin Javier has yet to fall in love or kiss a boy offstage, away from the klieg lights. She is the perfect leading lady—whose heart men would fight for, win, and protect—unfortunately, only until the curtains fall and the lights go down. In real life, Erin is a certified NBSB whose heart has been hoping for a song to dance to for quite some time.
But when two (two!) men enter from stage left and right, Erin is confused. Who deserves to take center stage in her heart—Mr. Theatre Royalty whose attention and displays of affection make her pulse race, or a good friend whose steady support has helped steer her to success and fulfill her dream?
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Waiting in the Wings serves up HEA in spades. It’s a fun and happy read that packs a punch of happy feelings as things progress. Of course, along the way, I can’t say the same. One of the things floating in my head while reading it was, this is one character away from A Midsummer Night’s Dream, and as messy (in love) as it.
One of the things I love about Waiting in the Wings is how we see both MC and LI struggling to find things in life: love and career, respectively. While there are books who treat the LI as human as the MC, a lot of books still set up the LI as a perfect piece of flesh, meant to be desired and admired throughout the text.
Waiting in the Wings brings a refreshing LI in Ramon Figueroa’s character. We rarely see an LI owning up to self-esteem issues that usually plague the MC, but here’s the thing: flaws create character and depth that makes your LI, or any character for that matter, more dynamic. Dynamic characters are always a good thing. It endears the readers to them and creates for a more complex book.
I just love how we see Ramon try and build himself up. I especially love how the book portrays him as someone who would do things to better himself. We don’t see much of that in books. Ultimately, my reading of Waiting in the Wings is a coming-of-age of both main characters, overcoming obstacles and growing together. I especially love how they both figured out things for themselves together.
Erin Javier is the cutest character I have read so far. She is this cuddly ball of sunshine, and in Ramon’s words, people just can’t help but fall in love with her. And it’s true. At her very core, you know Erin just wants to help out. But for me, her character begins her development a little earlier than Ramon. With her conscious decision to wait in the wings (see what I did there?), to allow herself to experience the things she usually portrays on stage, seemed not quite an easy decision to make for someone as giving and kind as Erin.
But, this kindness of her is also her character flaw. She tries so hard to be there for and to help Ramon but it does more harm than help. But you have to give it to her, her grand gesture was one of the most beautiful Grand Gestures I’ve ever read—realistic, not too gaudy, artistic, and fits their characters just right. I am so down with that kind of Grand Gesture.
Should I talk about Pio? Okay, I guess so. Pio Alvez is the foil to Ramon’s character: he is confident, his career is stable, and there is just a deep rooted sense of self with him. He is the obvious, no-brainer choice for Erin’s LI if you think about it logically. But Pio is also the shiny boy you’d just love to stare at. I feel like Pio could be a great character but this is not his book yet and he is emotionally unavailable for Erin. His schedule and all his rules (baggage, tbh) make him just unfit for this book. It’s not his turn to grow yet. He is a prime character for another MC, though, but not for Erin.
There are lots of reasons to read this book: the characters, the growth, the story. And to add more reasons, read it for the intertextual material. There are wonderful songs penned for this book that snatches my heart and I can only just imagine if they were really singing in real life for a stage adaptation. I can’t even wrap my head around writing songs, for me that’s such a big task. Like writing poetry.
I just love this book to pieces. Ramon is a great character to fall in love with, and yes, I really identify with Erin’s affectionate character (hehe). And hey, I just realized now how ripe Pio is for a celebrity romance story! Heh. I hope we see a sequel with Pio.