Review: The Accidental Pinup by Danielle Jackson

Posted October 13, 2022 by Angie in Book Reviews / 0 Comments

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Review: The Accidental Pinup by Danielle JacksonThe Accidental Pinup by Danielle Jackson
Published by Berkley on July 19, 2022
Genres: Adult Fiction, Contemporary, Romance
Format: eBook (314 pages)
Source: Library
Purchase: AmazonIndieBound
Add Book: Goodreads

Rival photographers are forced to collaborate on a body-positive lingerie campaign, but they might have to readjust their focus when sparks fly.

Photographer Cassie Harris loves her job—her company Buxom Boudoir makes people look beautiful and feel empowered with her modern twist on classic pinup photography. Cassie’s best friend, Dana, is about to launch her own dangerously dreamy lingerie line and wants Cassie to shoot and direct the career-changing national campaign. But company politics and Dana’s complicated pregnancy interfere, and Cassie finds herself—a proud plus size Black woman—not behind the camera but in front of it.

Though she’s never modeled herself, Cassie’s pretty sure she can handle the sheer underwear and caution tape bralettes. She’s not sure she can work so intimately with the chosen photographer, her long-time competitor in the Chicago photography scene, Reid Montgomery. Their chemistry is undeniable on set, however, and feelings can develop faster than film…


Proceed With Caution:

This book contains a dangerous pregnancy and racism.

The Basics:

The Accidental Pinup follows Cassie, an up-and-coming photographer who is hoping to land a major campaign photographing her best friend’s new lingerie line, and Reid, an established photographer who seems to be everywhere. But when Dana’s pregnancy takes a turn for the worst, she must step down as the main model and recommends Cassie for the job! Cassie was hoping to get the photographer role, but her nemesis Reid Montgomery edged her out once again. But Cassie is a professional, so she takes on the roles of model and art director….and photographer’s girlfriend.

My Thoughts:

I was so excited for The Accidental Pinup! As a curvy Black woman who dresses retro, I was immediately hooked by this premise! And it’s rivals to lovers! Awesome! Unfortunately, I wasn’t into it at all. Right off the bat, this book rubbed me the wrong way. I still think the premise is great, and Cassie was likeable. But I could not stand the love interest, and the plot points were kind of convoluted and confusing. Sometimes less is more.

Reid is pretty hot photographer in Chicago with a similar style to Cassie, but he gets all of the jobs that she goes for, because of course, he’s a white dude. This job is the first time he and Cassie come face-to-face and she makes sure to let him know what this shoot could mean to her career. She has to work so much harder to get recognition and has to remain super professional at all times, simply because she’s a Black woman. Reid’s response? He thinks she needs to let loose and offers to be “unprofessional” with her during their time together. Even after Cassie tells him no, they need to remain professional. Gross.

On top of Reid just being unprofessional and pushy right off the back, because Cassie is superhot and he gets to photograph her in barely-there undergarments, he’s also just icky. He saves his “favorite” shots from their first photoshoot together. Not because they’re great pictures for his portfolio. For his spank bank, because Cassie is sexy as hell. That is so creepy! I mean, yes, he took those pictures himself, but to keep them for personal use is weird. Especially after that whole “let’s be unprofessional” conversation. Needless to say, I did not like Reid at all.

Then there’s Reid’s personal plot. I was confused, because there were too many moving parts thrown at us right off the bat. I liked the part about his brother constantly having these big ideas, and get rich quick schemes, where Reid financially helps him out and then gets screwed over. That would have been all well and good. But then we’re told about his gambling problem, which Reid has bailed him out of. Then their parents are awful, so he needs to buy their house to get rid of them, but buying the house is also another harebrained scheme from his brother? I don’t know. It was too much and not really explained well.

But all of that was directly related to the relationship drama, which I also could not get behind. Reid is paid a bonus to keep tabs on Cassie during the photoshoot. The executives backing it want to make sure too much of Cassie’s vision doesn’t come through so they can get the look that they want. Obviously, he accepts this offer before knowing Cassie. And during their time together he never does anything to sabotage her (gotta make sure he’s still the good guy!). I know he couldn’t say anything to her about it, because she had to find out in a horrible way to peak the drama and have a breakup. But he could have told her and helped her prepare for that final shoot where everyone was present.

The Accidental Pinup was just overall disappointing and made me feel icky. Reid is a horrible love interest.

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