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Living the Dream

(Whitman University #5)

really liked it 4.00  ·  Rating details ·  476 ratings  ·  45 reviews
An unfortunate and embarrassing incident that precipitated Audra Stuart’s breakup last winter sent her scurrying for cover, unwilling to show her face again at Whitman University. When her roommate Blair Paddington tracks her down and learns what happened, she convinces Audra that letting her jackass ex win is not the answer…but that maybe going to Sebastian Blair for help ...more
Published November 25th 2014
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Jenn I read it as a stand alone before reading the other books and I didn't have any trouble following it. Yes it refers to things that happened between ot…moreI read it as a stand alone before reading the other books and I didn't have any trouble following it. Yes it refers to things that happened between other couples in other books, but they're more background info I guess. The story is about Audra and Sebastian so background on the secondary characters while interesting isn't relevant to following the story.(less)
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really liked it Average rating 4.00  · 
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Lyla Payne
Sep 19, 2014 added it  ·  (Review from the author)
It's here!! YOU GUYS, SEBASTIAN IS WAITING FOR YOU! I can't thank you all enough for loving the kids at Whitman U as much as I do. I hope I've done Sebastian (and Audra) justice with this installment. <3

iBooks -
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You can read the first 5 chapters of LIVING THE DREAM right here on Goodreads!! Let me know what you think if you do!! (14 days until it's LIVE)!

Denise Grover Swank
When I heard Audra and Sebastian? How's she going to pull this off? Um... not only does she pull it off, but left me fanning myself. I love this book!
Aug 25, 2014 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: enda-abis
DNF @ 25%, Dec. 4, 2014.
I was anticipated about it because hello, it's Sebastian BUT then he blabs politics excessively it just bores me to death and I just can't continue no more. Sorry.

RD: Nov 25, 2014
Nov 24, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I have been waiting and waiting for my Sebastian book since we met him in Broken at Love. I have been intrigued with that sociopathic yet sexy villain from the get go, and I am sooooo excited we got to delve deeper into that mind. And when I heard he was pairing up with the lovely Audra Stuart for one more scheme, I knew this was going to be a book I could not put down-- and I was not disappointed.

The whole Whitman crew is made up of lovable characters that you can't help get invested in. Sebast
Hana Bilqisthi
Dec 25, 2017 rated it really liked it
I expected it to fun and quick read
And OMG I was so wrong
This book is not fun and quick read and surprisingly this book suck me in and made me care for Sebastian and Audra.
I don't understand myself.
The pace is so slow and I even thinking DNF this book. But after put this book away for 5 hours, I still curious about Sebastian and Audra so I continue this book.
The plot is kinda stressed me but had good job at being cliche and surprising as well.
I had enjoyable read in the end
Emily Pearson
Nov 26, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Holy crap Lyla is brilliant once again. Full review to come ♡
Dec 09, 2014 rated it did not like it
I wasn't really digging this story to begin with, but it was ok, perhaps a solid three star; I was semi-interested in seeing how the storyline played out for the characters. That all changed at the author's use of the phrase "right wing nut job." Since we all know that is code for "any Republican" I just want to sincerely thank the author for calling a portion of her readers "nut jobs" for having political disagreements with her.

I'm curious just what kind of "right wing nut job" has a soon-to-b
Feb 18, 2015 rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jan 05, 2016 rated it it was amazing
This is brilliant! M so smitten by it, i have no words! Sebastien stole my heart away!
Jul 15, 2018 rated it it was amazing
The best in the Whitman University series...
Feb 26, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: own, e-book
Yes I'm that horrible reader that started at the end of the series, but let me explain why. I heard mixed opinions about the writer and even reading the descriptions the characters didn't really sound like great people that I'd enjoy reading about. That said one of my favorite romance tropes is the fake relationship turned real so I decided if I was going to give this writer a try that I was going to go for a trope that I know I like and see how she makes it her own and if I enjoy reading that. ...more
Sep 20, 2014 rated it it was amazing

Opening line: "New York City is as awe inspiring as everyone claims but I didn't expect it to be so dirty."

 First thought after closing the book: Perfect ending is perfect! 

 Thoughts on the cover: The guy isn't exactly MY Sebastian, but I do like it. 

 Is it a standalone/series?: Standalone. 

 Do you have to read the book(s) before?: Yes and no. We see pretty much every character from the previous books, but this can be read as a standalone as you won't be lost to wha
Jaime Arkin
You all know I’m a huge fan of Lyla Payne. Her stories are always fun and sweet and have just the perfect amount of drama in them to keep me riveted to the story… and Living the Dream is no exception.

I wondered and wondered how Payne was going to write a story about a character that I’ve spent 4 books basically hating and make me change my mind about him.

 photo grinch-hate-hate_zps934529e8.gif


She did it.

 photo 849498_zps83e36cbf.gif

Even from the outset I was prepared to dislike him, I wasn’t giving Sebastian the benefit of the doubt and for good
ɑƨħŵɑɡ ♥Team Magnus Damora FOREVER♥
Initial reaction: I am drowning in feels.. SOMEONE SEND HELP!


Later: Review

My relationship with this series has been instant love with Broken at Love and continued on this trend with each book proving Lyla Payne's super ability to connect you to a romance in the most amazing way.

Living the Dream is even better.

For girls like me who have a soft spot for bad-guys redeeming arcs then this one will definitely be for you.

I honestly don't remember Seb from Broken at love, it was all about Emili and
~nikki the recovering book addict
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
I'm sad to see the Whitman University series end, but if it had to end, I'm glad it was with Sebastian's story. To say I was anxiously awaiting this story is an understatement - I've been curious about Sebastian since the start of the series. There's nothing better than a guy who is kind of a douche bag, but also wickedly smart. Sebastian has a kind of clever evil that I haven't seen in a long time - it reminded me a bit of Sebastian from Cruel Intentions actually. So I couldn't wait to see a gi ...more
Manon Meyers
Nov 08, 2014 rated it really liked it
A book I've been waiting for quite a while. The author made my day by "saving" Sebastian. He intrigued me since the first book and I knew there had to be some good in him. Sebastian is the character you love to hate. He’s always lurked in the background bad boy image in full effect, but I just knew that was one of many layers that he had on. Everyone has secrets and things that weigh on them. Sebastian is probably the most complex character in the whole series and one of the most interesting one ...more
Resch Reads
Sep 18, 2014 rated it really liked it
Such an excellent story but so sad to see the Whitman University series come to an end. These are characters I fell in love with and lets just say this was Sebastian’s road to redemption. Sebastian is a con man, trouble maker and I just flat out hated him…until this book. Over the progression of the story I slowly started to like Sebastian and dare I say it, I was swooning for him at the end?! I know it is a shocker, especially if you read the other 4 books, you know Sebastian is a special kind ...more
Char Sowers
Nov 17, 2014 rated it it was amazing
There is a remarkable enchantment that Lyla Payne has been gifted with which enables her to transform a character, Sebastian Blair, who has been almost "villainous" and convert him into one of the most vulnerable heroes in her Whitman University series. Audra Stuart has been one of my favorite side characters, coming across as level headed and able to hold her own, so I was thrilled that she was getting her own novel but pairing her with Sebastian??? This novel is truly a Love Story based on imp ...more
Kelly Mccurdy
Dec 04, 2014 rated it it was amazing
~~I received this in exchange for an honest review~~

Its finally Sebastian's turn!! He is the bad boy in the group. Everyone expects him to do something in exchange for something else. But, what he doesn't expect is Audra. She needs something from him, and he needs a new reputation.

This book has tons of feels to it. I was angry at one point and was yelling at the book, don't do it!!! But Lyla has a way to make the good in people come out. She takes a normal love story and makes it into a great
Ashlee Lau
Jul 27, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I won't say it is my favorite this time....(I won't say it but I am thinking it).

I think this book is all about second chances. Second chances at love, at being the person you never knew you wanted to be, and learning to be comfortable in your own skin. It is about taking your life back. And owning it. And doing it while falling in love with someone you never saw coming because fate put you together? Even better. Sebastian, despite his complete douchebaggery ways manages to win you over, despite
Jennifer Scharf
Nov 19, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Lyla Payne wraps up her Whitman University series with the same mix of interesting characters, energy, and steam that we see in the first 4 books of the series. However, the depravity of the male lead was unparalleled in any of the earlier stories which brings this book to a whole new level. This installment of the series brings the reader full circle, wraps up the earlier story lines, and leaves the reader feeling that there is a true sense of closure. Another fantastic effort from Lyla Payne!
Abby Legrange
Jun 06, 2014 rated it it was amazing
This book was so much more than fantastic. I wasn't sure if I could handle a whole book dedicated to Seb, but, of course, Lyla made us not just like him, but even love him. The writing is crisp and realistic. As with all the books in this series, it was easy to get emotionally invested. I tore through this book in fewer than 3 days and really enjoyed it. I loved the dialogue between the characters and the way I could relate to their emotions, both good and bad.
Aug 09, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Its definitely sad to see the Witman U stories come to an end, but damn does Payne know how to go out with a bang (no pun intended). When i first saw Sebastien in Quinn and Emily's story, im not going to lie, i thought he was a creepy sleaze ball. But as i read more of the series, i kinda hoped he would find someone to turn into a better person! Living the Dream was awesome, it didn't turn him into a new person, but made him less sociopath-y and im not going to lie, i totally loved him!
Robin Shawn
Dec 02, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I have really enjoyed this series and was really curious if the author could actually redeem Sebastian. I must say I'm impressed she did it. He was such a jerk in this series. This book didn't take the easy way out with him. He was suffering for his sins throughout. I thought Audra was a perfect fit for him. I also loved the ending (Quinn and Emilie!) but kind of wish the epilogue was even further into the future. It would be great to get a novella that shows all the characters in the future!
Chloe Barlow
Dec 04, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I love this series and this book! Lyla Payne has such a beautiful writing style, and it really comes through in this installment of what I hope is not really the last in this wonderful series. Audra and Sebastian are sexy, thoughtful, fun, angsty, intense -- they have it all. The plot is also timely and thought provoking. Ms. Payne doesn't shy from tough issues, and I really like her approach with this book. You have to pick this book up, it's wonderful.
Stephanie D
Feb 20, 2015 rated it really liked it
Oh Sebastian, how I waited for you. He's a villain in the previous books. And I've always wondered what makes him tick, what makes him do the things he does. And if he actually enjoys it.

And amazingly, this book shows it. His side of the story. Im pretty sure, Sebastian's character resembles chuck bass from gossip girl. You want to hate him, but then there's this likability factor.

So I enjoyed him in his misery. Ha! i had fun reading this book :)
Dec 10, 2014 rated it really liked it
I really loved these characters! I was a bit confused because I thought I remembered the first book telling us that Sebastian was odd looking? Anyhow, my only issues were the liberal comments regarding politics, and the whole fake engagement thing-it was pretty ridiculous. I loved watching Sebastian grow, though, and liked that Audra was a strong, confident woman.
Angi Naerebout
Mar 25, 2015 rated it really liked it
Oh my gosh, so good!! Sebastian redeemed was really good. I love Audra and I loved the whole thing. I thought it played out perfectly and they completely worked and I loved it. My favorite is still Kennedy and Toby, but this one is definitely a favorite. I'm so incredibly sad it's over though.
Jul 08, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: new-adult
4.5 stars!!! Oh my gosh that ending was perfect!!! I love Lyla Paynes books but that ending was so good, probably one of the best I've read for new adult, so many happy tears! What a way to end the series
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I've been publishing New Adult romance novels for a little over a year, starting with Broken at Love and continuing with the rest of the Whitman University series. I adore telling stories, discovering the little reasons people fall in love, and uncovering hidden truths in the world around us – past and present.

In my spare time I cuddle my two dogs, pretend to enjoy exercising so that I can eat as

Other books in the series

Whitman University (5 books)
  • Broken at Love (Whitman University, #1)
  • By Referral Only (Whitman University, #2)
  • Be My Downfall (Whitman University, #3)
  • Staying on Top (Whitman University, #4)

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