Guys, guys, guys! I’ve written before of my love for Mariana Zapata, but this time I think she may have outdone herself! Or maybe the story was enhanced for me because I was listening on Audible. I don’t know. But From Lukov with Love is sooooo freaking good! Like, swoon…..
All of Zapata’s books are connected through characters, but in From Lukov with Love we get our closest connection yet. It is the story of Jasmine Santos and she is the sister of Ruby from Dear Aaron.
Jasmine is a pairs figure skater and she’s asked to partner up with Ivan Lukov for a season. He’s a world renowned gold medalist so that should be fine, right? Only they can’t stand each other… True he’s not a hockey player but I still immediately thought of a favorite from my childhood, The Cutting Edge! The banter! The passion! The skating!
I love how natural Zapata makes the transition from enmity to friendship to love feel between Jasmine and Ivan. She truly is a master of the slow burn. I, too, started off hating Ivan. But by the end?
Ivan and Jas give great banter! She calls him a bitch; he calls her meatball. It’s adorable. And through their love of skating, they learn to love each other, first becoming best friends (and their friendship is adorable) And the payoff at the end? It’s soooo satisfying! This may just be my favorite Zapata book and that is saying a LOT. I really love her books!
The audio version is mainly narrated by Callie Dalton, as most of Zapata’s audiobooks are. But Teddy Hamilton voices Lukov. At first I found this weird. Dalton voices all the other males in the novel and Lukov didn’t talk very much in the beginning so it would be a lot of Dalton and then one or two words from Hamilton. But as Jas and Ivan began working together, spending virtually all their time together, I grew to love the fact that Lukov had his own distinct narrator. It helped a lot when they were bickering quickly or even talking over one another. It really, really brought the story to life!
I can’t say enough good things about this story! It’s one I will definitely listen to again (and again and again). If romance novels were ice skating, Zapata would bring home the gold at every competition there is with this one!
5 Bazillion Stars!