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They're Strictly Friends (Tough Love Spinoff, #1)
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They're Strictly Friends

(Tough Love)

3.97  ·  Rating details ·  131 ratings  ·  90 reviews

Outright enmity between France and England might be long past, but merry war betwixt two people from bookends of the English Channel comes easily to Lucas and Elodie. Verbal sparring, witty jabs, and a feverish dance of mutual interest, their friendship is a model uneasy détente.

Lucas Edwards is the consummate English gentleman…most of the time. He might get a bit

Kindle Edition, 417 pages
Published October 2019
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Erin It's not necessary. The characters in the first book are present but that's it. This one has different main characters and is truly a spinoff from the…moreIt's not necessary. The characters in the first book are present but that's it. This one has different main characters and is truly a spinoff from the first one. (less)
Chloe Liese This is a standalone, so it can be read without having read the original Tough Love Trilogy! You'll meet Lucas and Elodie in those stories but you by…moreThis is a standalone, so it can be read without having read the original Tough Love Trilogy! You'll meet Lucas and Elodie in those stories but you by no means have to read those books to enjoy Strictly Friends :-).(less)
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Average rating 3.97  · 
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 ·  131 ratings  ·  90 reviews

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Natalie ✩★ The Biblioholic ★✩
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They're Strictly Friends was an absolutely dreamy followup to the Tough Love trilogy! I fell in love with Zed and Nairne's hard-fought happily ever after and found myself quite smitten with a bloke by the name of Lucas. I knew he and Elodie shared a strong connection, but for some strange reason they were fighting it. I wanted to know what was preventing them from pursuing their own happiness. Chloe Liese wrote a beautiful story that
Jessie Sedai of the Black Ajah🥀🐍
3.5 Star Review

A genre-bending exploration of love amidst the chaos of grief and anxiety. Chloe Liese transcends the fluffy (and more times than not, shallow) rom-com archetype to delivery a story with wisdom and gravitas. Our main characters bear heavy burdens - Lucas has been diagnosed with a chronic disease that will leave him completely blind in a matter of years, while Elodie has been shunned emotionally and financially by her parents for not accepting an arranged marriage proposal. These
Laura • lauralovestoread
Friends to Lovers is one of my favorite tropes, and this story of Lucas and Elodie drew me in right away! I loved how relatable the characters felt, and it’s such a heartwarming, emotional story with plenty of sexual tension and steam.

There’s even a Spotify playlist that Chloe created to nurture the reading experience.

*Thank you to Chloe Liese for providing an advanced copy for review! All opinions are my own.
Nov 18, 2019 rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Carol | tilthelastpage
Smart, sexy, and heartwarming. Chloe is a new author to me, but I am in love with her writing. It’s authentic, alluring, and completely romantic! This book is a delight to read. Elodie and Lucas is an amazing dynamic. They have intense chemistry together and well-matched in a very proportionate way. I am beyond curious about their history and can’t think of any other way to phrase how I felt about this book, but a job well done. If you’re looking to read something to warm up your Christmas days, ...more
Kelsey Bollinger
Nov 29, 2019 rated it liked it
I am going to start out this review by saying that I know a lot of other people who have read this book and loved it. I am in the minority so please go and read other reviews before you decide to read this book or not. Reading is a subjective thing so some books work for some people while the same book does not work for others. That is the case for me and They're Strictly Friends. Do not continue reading if you do not want minor spoilers. Nothing that will ruin the plot but still. Trigger ...more
Pinki Jana
Nov 21, 2019 rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Nov 11, 2019 rated it it was amazing

What's not to love about an inclusive book that talks about disability accurately and also has more Harry Potter references than you can count? I loved everything about this book and I found so many quotes resonated deep in my soul. Of course Chloe Liese is a literary genius and I neeeeed her next book asap. She has quickly moved onto my top author list and has also found herself on my auto buy author list. If you haven't read one of her books, what are you waiting for?

Nov 19, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
[Thank you Chloe Liese for the complimentary copy in exchange for an honest review]

Sometimes I read a book that doesn’t entirely work for me, and I opt not to read anymore of that authors work. This was not one of those times. I read He’s a Brute a few months ago, and it wasn’t one that I loved (I’m very much in the minority, most people I know adored it). I learned I don’t know if mafia storylines (or BDSM) are really my thing. But when Chloe announced her new book They’re Strictly Friends, you
Nov 08, 2019 rated it really liked it
Thank you Chloe for sending me this ARC in exchange for an honest review!!

*PLEASE NOTE: I put a trigger warning at the end of my review that contains spoilers!

If you're a fan of The Flatshare, you'd totally love this book - it just addresses (in my opinion) more sensitive topics.

LOVE(s): the fact that Elodie is a sexy, full figured woman - who deals with PCOS (Polycystic Ovary Syndrome...which MANY women are affected by) - who is ALSO A BADASS BUSINESS WOMAN WHO TAKES NO SHIT. Sign me up
Dec 10, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: romance, arcs, ebooks
Elodie and Lucas... I think you broke me!

How do I even start this? What I went in knowing about this book was that it's a spinoff of a series of Liese's. I had not read the series but knew that this could be read as a standalone. What I didnt know was how emotionally invested I would become. I have read quite a few books this year and frequently confuse those stories with others. I feel that this one will not have the same effect.

Lucas and Elodie are just magnificent. Liese uses perfect
Dec 20, 2019 rated it really liked it
“You said you’d rather be a fool for my love than a wise man without me.”
“Because, that’s love for you, Though I amend my statement. Love works both ways, not exclusively. It humbles and elevates us. It makes both fools and wise men of us, doesn’t it?”

my first book by Chloe Liese and I loved it , this spinoff book about Lucas and elodie was a well written Heartwarming, sweet, emotional and sexy story. I need to read the first series by this author because I was in love with the Characters of Zed
Dec 02, 2019 rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2010-s, arcs, 2019
I received an Advanced Reader Copy from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
Spoilers ahead.
TW: Miscarriage, pregnancy loss, PCOS

I'm going to start by saying that I have not read the other books in this series. If I had, maybe I would have a different opinion of this book. Overall, I did not enjoy it. I find it very hard to suspend my disbelief while reading stories that are billed as contemporaries. The circumstance of Elodie's pregnancy and miscarriage were too much and, honestly, a bit
Pooja (Penningtales)
3.5 stars
Elodie Bertrand likes Lucas Edwards and she feels he likes her back. So when he suddenly stops pursuing her and ignores all her attempts at flirtation, she’s left confused and slightly hurt. Lucas sees what his actions are doing to Elodie, but after a grim diagnosis, he’s determined to not draw her into his life only to condemn with him. They must remain ‘strictly friends’. But when fate throws them together and Lucas finds his resolve slipping, will he able to protect Elodie? Or can
I felt misled by the blurb for this book (and the title) which made it seem as though the book would all be about the dance between an uptight Englishman and a fiery Frenchwoman as they flirted but never quite got together. Instead, Elodie and Lucas get together quite early on in the novel.

Lucas is about to take over his family business when he receives some bad news from his doctor, news which puts his career and his life plans in jeopardy. Irritatingly, we don't know exactly what this news is
Nov 23, 2019 rated it really liked it
This is probably a 3.5 stars book, but I bumped it to 4 because I really loved the first half.

This is my first book in the Tough Love Series, so I wasn't too aware of the other characters and their stories. However, I don't think this was an issue when reading this book.

We start with Lucas receiving some bad news, he has a threatening condition that purposely stays hidden at the beginning of the book, and because of it, he has sworn off love. But Lucas has been having strong feelings for his
Mollie's Bookshelf
ARC generously provided by the author, all thoughts are my own.

Where do I start? Firstly, I have been anticipating reading Lucas & Elodie's story since finishing the Tough Love series where I first met them. I fell so hard for Lucas nearly immediately and Elodie barged right in easily. Elodie is one of the strongest heroines I have read, highly intelligent and headstrong but also vulnerable and caring.

As the story begins, Lucas has learned of a life altering diagnosis. He already cares
Calista Andrechek
Dec 02, 2019 rated it liked it
Thank you to NetGalley, Chloe Liese and NetGalley Connect for the free e-book in exchange for an honest review.

This novel was pleasantly surprising in that there was a fair amount of romance, sex scenes that could make you blush and an actual real life problem that needed real life solution that causes relationship problems that I feel like we can all sort of relate too. I adored the characters in this novel and the problems that they had throughout their lives were things that we could all
Nov 19, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I first met Elodie and Lucas by reading the Tough Love series from this author. Elodie and Lucas flirted then and you could definitely sense there was real chemistry. Fast forward to this book and wow! Elodie moves to London after a fall out with her parents over the future of her life. She immediately wants to fall into Lucas's arms but he's dealing with some health issues that he's not quite ready to share. Once the issue is revealed, Lucas struggles with his health and trying to be the ...more
Brook Obsessed
Dec 13, 2019 rated it really liked it
This was such a beautiful and endearing read! I loved the diversity of the characters and how Liese portrayed people, their problems , and love in such a realistic and dynamic fashion. Very cool!

Blurb: Lucas and Elodie have been friends for awhile, but when things start to heat up Lucas backs off big time. He’s hiding a big secret that will soon affect the rest of his life.

Lucas doesn’t want to complicate anyone else’s life, so he tries to push Elodie away, even though life has other plans.

Amy [Book Addict Reviews]
Dec 08, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Chloe Liese is a new to me author and I really enjoyed reading this book. If you’re looking for a friends to lovers rom com this is definitely one to check out. I’m adding the previous books to my TBR. That being said this is a spin off of a previous series, but can easily be read without prior knowledge of the other books.

I loved the chemistry between Elodie and Lucas. They are friends, but there is no denying the tension between them. Of course, they can only deny it for so long before they
Living My Best Book Life
Dec 01, 2019 rated it really liked it
They're Strictly Friends is an friends-to-lovers romance that pulls at your heartstrings. I enjoyed meeting Elodie and Lucas because they are so different. Those differences bring them closer together as the story goes on.

Lucas and Elodie were introduced by their friends and they didn't really get along. When Lucas gets some news, his perspective changes and although he always wanted Elodie he knows they can never be more than friends.

After they spend time alone, it becomes even harder to deny
Dec 14, 2019 rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Dec 16, 2019 rated it liked it
I would have gone for 4 stars but the book was redundant and kind of boring in the middle. The plot was interesting though.
Dec 06, 2019 rated it it was amazing
{Thank you to Chloe Liese for my complimentary review copy.}
This is the first book I've read by Chloe and it will not be the last. I immediately added the first series to my TBR list when I finished this book.
I fell in love with Lucas right from the start. I felt such heartache for him without even knowing what his diagnosis was in the first chapter. I knew this had a HEA so it wasn't a fatal diagnosis but still huge. It is huge. Absolutely life changing.
Elodie had me from the moment she left
Dec 08, 2019 rated it it was ok
** I received an ARC in exchange for an honest review.**
I love a romance that can tackle tough subjects and still keep me interested and rooting for the couple. However, this book really got bogged down in internal musings and conversations that went nowhere or took place during really inappropriate times.
Neither of the characters caught my attention and I felt like I was peering into their story instead Of being in their story.
Mikaela (Booklover1974)
I really like when a romance book isn't just fluffy but also contains more serious issues, like disability in this story. The author did a good job writing about the anxiety and the hurdles that comes with a disability.
If it weren't for all the repetitive description about Lucas and Elodies physical appearance and how everybody just fell in love with them for their good looks, the rating would have been much higher.

Thanks to the publisher and Netgalley for the free copy in exchange for an

I so enjoy a good rom-com, and I loved that it was a friends to lovers romance. Chloe Liese is a new to me author and after reading They're Strictly Friends, I so want to read The Tough Love Trilogy.

Elodie and Lucas are the perfect friends and make the most perfect couple. These two eventually succumb to their sexual attraction. Lucas may be stubborn and angry about his newfound disability, but Elodie is just as stubborn by proving that she will be there for Lucas despite his
Thank you to Netgalley for the e-arc in exchange for my honest review.

First off I want to say I loved the representation that happened in this book. Lucas going blind is something we don't ever see happening in most books. The way he denied it and avoided it for so long is a very real thing for a lot of people in the disability community because like it was mentioned in the book your angry and grieving all at the same time that it's progressively getting worse. It's hard to explain that to the
Nov 13, 2019 rated it really liked it
Elodie and Lucas are friends who have some more than friendly feelings for each other but don't act on them. They are strictly friends!

That is until they are spending more time together after Elodie is moving in with him in order to get on her feet. The tension and feelings between them don't stay hidden for long.
But they are still having to deal with some difficulties that are keeping them apart.

The book is talking about some very important issues and it shows very respectful how people can
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Chloe writes stories that, like people, resist categories. Portraying marginalized, underrepresented voices and experiences, her books are hot, witty, full of heart and keep you on the edge of your seat. She’s an avid reader, Harry Potter lover, and eats more peanut butter cups than she probably should.

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Other books in the series

Tough Love (3 books)
  • He's a Brute (Tough Love, #1)
  • She's a Spitfire (Tough Love, #2)
  • They're a Match (Tough Love, #3)