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Speakeasy (True North, #5)
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(True North #5)

4.16  ·  Rating details ·  2,877 ratings  ·  435 reviews
Sometimes you fall for Mr. Right. And sometimes for Mr. Right Now…

Did you hear the one about the girl who walks into a bar and catches her live-in lover kissing someone else? No? You’re the only one in town who missed it.
Luckily Alec is there to wrap me up in strong arms and carry me out the door before things get too ugly. And that’s not all Alec is good at. Our une
Kindle Edition, 274 pages
Published May 29th 2018 by Tuxbury Publishing LLC
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Susi It can be read as a standalone but I recommend to read the previuos too to have a better view of all the connecting storylines and secondary…moreIt can be read as a standalone but I recommend to read the previuos too to have a better view of all the connecting storylines and secondary characters(less)

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May 19, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2018-four-stars
4 Stars!!!

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Sometimes you fall for Mr. Right. And sometimes for Mr. Right Now…

Sarina Bowen has done it again! Her True North series is strong and I've enjoyed every book! I was excited to get to May Shipley's story. She's one I've been curious about since Zach and Lark's story. Boy did she meet her match with Alec! I absolutely loved their pairing! 

The last place May Shipley expects to be is a bar. As a recovering alcoholic, she tends to avoid them. When she sees her girlfriends car in the pa
Astrid - The Bookish Sweet Tooth
May 21, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: arc


The best recipe for a book slump is a Sarina Bowen book. I said it before and I'll say it again. And again. And...again. She's one of my favorite authors. She's dependable to deliver an engaging, beautiful story with lovable characters and even if it's a well used trope, she always puts her own twist on it. I don't think I've rated a book by this author below four stars.

With Speakeasy we are back with the Shipley family. May is the child that causes the Shipleys const
Stacey is Sassy
***IT'S ALIVE!!!***

It’s easy to exceed low expectations…

A wee bit spoilerish if you haven't read this series yet, please, proceed with caution.

I can truly sympathise with both May and Alec because I too suffer from…Middle Child Syndrome. Scoff all you like, but it’s a known fact that we, the middle child, are overlooked, forgotten and misjudged. I too have seen the shock on relatives faces when, surprise, surprise, I do something well. For me - *Oh, you’re a book reviewer? I didn’t even know y
Jul 28, 2018 rated it really liked it
Oh yeah, I love when a book character makes me feel well-adjusted.
May is a girl that is a complete hot mess. She's been a background character throughout this series and was previously in love with her best friend, who was a female (and straight), and then decided she is bisexual. Then, she became a drunken mess and realized she is an alcoholic. Oh, an alcoholic with a cheating, bitchy girlfriend.

I had an alcoholic friend once. Great designated driver!
I remember this one time we went out to a c
May 19, 2018 rated it really liked it
4.5 stars

Wow!! Not only did the book-cover completely enchant me, the story on its own was absolutely stunning!!!

Speakeasy is honestly next to Bittersweet my most favorite True North story to date.

May and Alec were a stunning couple. And I can only applaud the author for writing a story that embraced May's sexuality, her believes, and her beautiful soul in such an amazing way. The way May connected with Alec was entirely genuine, and surprisingly sexy. She was a wild one. And I absolutely loved
May 17, 2018 rated it really liked it
Amazon US * Amazon UK

Speakeasy started off a little confusing for me since at the beginning May is dating a woman, and then even has an inner dialogue about her female best friend. It seemed a little odd to me to have that much attention on the fact that she was into girls all while the hero was more of a background character. I'm in no way, shape, or form saying I had a problem with her being bisexual, just that it had questioning if she was even going to end up liking the hero in a ro
May 06, 2018 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Sarina Bowen Fans, Romance
4 Do Not Underestimate Stars
* * * * Spoiler Free It's Live!!
You know you are a hardcore fan when a specific author's book lands on your kindle and you drop everything to read it...That's what happens when Sarina Bowen graces me with her words. I have found for me, she handles universal human issues so incredibly well...She takes the ugly, the insecurities and the questioning thoughts we all have experienced at some point and shows how we are all in this together... no one is immune.

In all of th
Optimist ♰King's Wench♰ & MANTIES Champion
ALL THE STARS!!!!!!!!!!

True story. When I discovered that this one wasn't going to feature Roderick and Kieran I had a sad, because something is up with those two! But I soldiered on and guess what happened?

I fell in love with this book! I might even like this better than Bittersweet! Bold statement I know, but this book filled up my love tank to bursting.

And now I’m going to squee. A lot. So brace yourselves.

This series always feels like coming home. I love the atmosphere in this sleepy littl
✰ Bianca ✰ BJ's Book Blog ✰




We all remember May from the first books. She's the Shipley's 'problem' child. She's an alcoholic. And nobody in the family really trusts her to make sensibly decisions about her love life and her life in general. Now she's living with a girl - Daniela - and hoping that for the first time in her life something is going her way. Hopefully forever. BUT, of course it's not - Daniela is cheating on her.

Poor May packs her bags and with the help of bar owner and her teenage crush Alec
Ⓐlleskelle - teamSøren♗ ⊲I like big b00ks⊳
There is just something so heartwarming about this whole series, even when the premise doesn't necessarily speaks to me from the get go, I always—ALWAYS— end up swooning my heart out.

It's about the quiet, easy, light and tender moments.
It's about the real, honest, messy feelings.
It's about the awkward, non-reharsed, spontaneous sex scenes.
And it's about friendship, lovable family, endearing secondary characters.

All in all, Sarina Bowen creates very relatable characters, engaging dialogues, a swe
Jennifer Kyle
May 31, 2018 rated it really liked it
Carole (Carole's Random Life in Books)
This review can also be found at Carole's Random Life in Books.

I loved this book! May and Alec were just great together and I really loved that this story was a little different. I only recently stumbled upon this series when I read the fourth book, Bountiful, and immediately fell in love with the characters, the setting, and the style of storytelling. I have since went back and read the first book in the series but I can assure you that each book in this series works well as a stand alone story
Angela (Reading Frenzy Book Blog)
4.5 stars

Top 5 Reasons Why You Should Read Speakeasy

1. The cover is gorgeous! I know they say you can’t judge a book by its cover, but seriously. It’s sexy yet classy. Both the cover and the story make me proud to be a romance reader.
2. Alec. From his corny bar jokes to his extreme loyalty, I loved every inch of this underestimated man. Despite his ambition and hard work, he can’t seem to shake his slutty party boy image or the voices in his head that tell him he’s not smart enough to succeed.
Geri Reads
Jun 06, 2018 rated it did not like it
DNF @24%

This hurts my heart. I enjoyed all of Sarina Bowen's previous books but unfortunately, this one didn't work for me.

Number one reason is I didn't really feel the chemistry between May and Alec. I loved May. I wanted her story since book 1. Her struggles and her bisexuality were handled wonderfully by Sarina Bowen, but I just didn't feel invested in her romance with Alec, maybe because I wanted to turn back time and have her be together with Lark. :(

Number two reason is Alec. I didn't dis
Five stars for Grandpa Shipley! He's like my favourite character.

In all seriousness, though, this is the first True North I've really liked since STEADFAST. Sure, there were parts maybe I wasn't too fond of, but my favourite Bowen is the Bowen who goes dark. And she tackles some heavy in SPEAKEASY (May's alcoholism) but then offers us a character like Alec. Who is just one big loveable delightful charming unflappable goofball. Other than Grandpa Shipley, he gets my stars.

I want more of May than
Kate's Corner
Actual rating 3.5 ☆

This is a mixed bag of I don’t know, I really love it and well why I feel as if something is missing. I love Ms. Bowen’s work especially the True North Series but I really did see how this was going to work. In the end it did but it felt one sided sometimes.

Characters & Chemistry.

May Shipley is the apparent black sheep of the family. Okay so none of her life choices have been ideal but she has picked herself back up time and time again. Now a lawyer she is trying to live
Bookgasms Book Blog
May 10, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: shelly, ratula
There's something about the True North series that resonates with me - every book, every time. Perhaps the fact that these are real life people dealing with real life issues. Perhaps that the friendships and family relationships are written so authentically that by this, the fifth book in the series, I actually feel like I'm part of it all. Perhaps it's just Ms. Bowen's gift of storytelling in such a way that draws you in, holds you captive, and leaves you - in the end - feeling a little breathl ...more

❝But love is messy, unpredictable, and occasionally loud.❞

Sarina Bowen's True North series makes me want to explore Vermont! With each book, she gives us new information about small town living and beautiful imagery of the North Eastern part of the US. This city girl needs to get go out and explore!

Sarina Bowen is a one-click author for me.  I never read a blurb because I couldn't care less what it's about, I just know that if she writes it, I want to read it.

❝The minute I let myself want so
Guilty Pleasures Book Reviews

Sarina Bowen’s True North series, encompasses everything I love about small town romances, and easily become one of my top series. The Shipley’s, are humble, relatable characters, who live their lives not all that different from the rest of us, complete with all the drama and relationship dynamics that stem from them.

I’ve been watching May’s backstory unfold and was unsure how much I’d enjoy reading about her and love interest from the previous books. I just didn’t ever feel like I was attached
A straight-out confession here: ‘Speakeasy’ isn’t my favourite in Sarina Bowen’s ‘True North’ series, unlike Jude’s and Sophie’s story that wore me to the ground.

I’m lukewarm about May and Alec—that is to say, I wasn’t invested very much in them for some reason—with the former’s issues getting me to shake my head while I winced at the latter’s lack of substance. May Shipley, however, was a more fleshed-out character than Alec Rossi and in turn, I felt that I could understand and appreciate her
Sandra ~ ♥ Cross My Heart ♥
Really enjoyed this addition to the True North series. Sweet, sassy, and oh so very sexy! Great story that deals with some real life issues and addictions. A Must Read!
Sep 19, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Speakeasy was the fifth book in the True North series by Sarina Bowen.

May Shipley was the sister to Griffin (Bittersweet, book one). She was an attorney and had several issues that were played out in previous books. It was good to see her come full circle with her own story - as painful as it was at times.

Alec Rossi was the brother to Zara (Bountiful, book four.) He was the fun, irresponsible sibling that most didn’t take seriously. However, he was so much more underneath and I enjoyed getting
Elle's Book Blog
Release Date: May 29, 2018
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Actual Rating: 2 stars

Unfortunately, I didn't care for this one. The previous books in the series were great but this one didn't work for me at all. First and foremost, I loved May when she was a secondary characters in the books before this one. She seemed like a woman with a heart of gold and a deep love for her family. I didn't feel this AT ALL in Speakeasy. In fact, I felt that she had a lot of disdain for them even though they clear
May 15, 2018 rated it really liked it

★3.5 STARS★

The True North series is a series that truly keeps on giving. Although Speakeasy is fifth in line, there appears to be no let up when it comes to my enjoyment of the stories Sarina has to tell about her Vermont natives.

If you’re already a fan of the series, you’ll know that May Shipley is little sister to our favourite grumpy farmer, Griff. We know enough about May to establish some of her background. She’s a recovering alcoholic, and her relationship with her girlfriend appears to
Beneath The Covers Blog
May 30, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2018-reads, arcs, sonal
Full review can be found HERE -->

*ARC provided for a voluntary honest review.* ~Sonal
Jun 02, 2018 rated it it was ok
Shelves: chick-lit
2 Stars

To be honest, I don't know how to review this book without it sounding strange. I will try my best.

I like the series and I like Sarina Bowen's writing. What I didn't like was the relationship of May and Alec.

The book starts with May discovering that her girlfriend's cheating on her. May is, obviously, bisexual and that's okay. Totally fine. What was not fine is that I didn't believe in her relationship with Alec.

Sometimes authors are able to make two completely different people perfe
*The Angry Reader*
May 31, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: arcs, 2018
***ARC received for an honest review***

5 stars for writing something I’ve read countless times and keeping me involved in the story the entire time.

May is coming off of a bad break-up. Alec is a hook-up King. There has to be 6000 contemporary romance books with this plot. But Bowen makes me care.

Each of these characters struggle with self-doubt. We watch the tendrils of that self-doubt wind their way through a relationship and wreak havoc. Between May’s alcoholism and Alec’s new business they
Sarah - Musings of the Modern Belle


Gah! Sarina Bowen has made me fall in love all over again with the True North series. I swooned over Alec, my heart hurt for May, and I yearned for these two to find a permanent place in each other’s lives.

Alec is more than words. He is fun, seemingly carefree, and his sense of humor draws readers in. Underneath his boyish charm, though, is man who isn’t as okay with his playboy reputation. Alec is a man who wants to be taken seri
Allison ❤️Will Never Conquer Her TBR❤️
Speakeasy, book five in the True North series, highlights May Shipley, a bisexual, and her budding romance with the Gin Mill owner Alec.

I must’ve forgotten May’s backstory from reading past books, because I must admit, FF tropes aren’t my cuppa... like, at all! No worries here, as it’s not FF but as a forewarning. May is coming off a relationship with a woman in the first part of this book. There’s no sex scenes with women though.

Jake...ah, sexy bartender and bar owner extraordinaire! He’s not
Jun 24, 2018 rated it liked it
3 1/2 "All for Alec" Stars!

I didn't love this one like I wanted to. But it certainly wasn't bad. I just didn't get much into the romance portion of the story. I was much more focused on Alec's business. And I just liked him a lot more than I did May. She seemed like a completely different character than she had been in the previous books. That could be unfair as I wasn't getting her perspective in those books; and she had some serious things going on. Anywho... I wasn't bad. If there will be mor
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New Adult Book Club: Sarina Bowen Signed Paperback Giveaway 38 101 Jun 08, 2018 03:34PM  
Sarina Bowen is the USA Today bestselling author of many things, including: the True North series, Him/Us and the WAGs series with Elle Kennedy, The Ivy Years series and the Brooklyn Bruisers. And more!
Are you looking for a friends-to-lovers story or maybe even a secret baby book? You can read a list of Sarina's books broken out by trope and style.
Need to know what's coming next ? Get all the l

Other books in the series

True North (6 books)
  • Bittersweet (True North, #1)
  • Steadfast (True North, #2)
  • Keepsake (True North, #3)
  • Bountiful (True North, #4; Brooklyn Bruisers #4.5)
  • Fireworks (True North, #6)
“Isn’t that everybody, though? Who walks around every day feeling perfectly worthy of love?” 1 likes
“Will you think less of me if we do this?" "Will you think less of me if I beg you to?” 1 likes
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