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The Underdogs #1

The Guy on the Right

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Strike One-My mother named me Theodore after her favorite chipmunk.

Not cool, Mom.

I‘ve spent most of my life answering to Teddy, because I couldn’t make Theo work.

Except for here. College. The place where all bets are off, and I’ve managed to redeem myself.
There’s only one problem, my new roommate, Troy, is football royalty and looks like he stepped off the set of an Abercrombie shoot.

Doesn’t matter, I cook a mean breakfast for his panty parade, and we get along well.
And anyway, this year I got the girl. And she’s perfect.

That’s right. Theodore Houseman, former band geek, now marching band rock star has finally landed the girl of his dreams.

Everything is perfect.

That is, until Troy takes a good look at her.

I’m not going down without a fight. As a matter of fact, I’m not going down at all. As glorious as these days may be for my all-star roommate, Laney is my end game.

I may not know much about play strategy, but I’ve been the good guy my whole life. I’ve been listening and I know exactly what women want. Framed in a picture standing next to me, Troy may seem like Mr. Perfect, but he’s underestimating the guy on the right.

Spoiler alert: In this story, the underdog is going to win.

364 pages, ebook

First published July 29, 2019

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About the author

Kate Stewart

54 books14.7k followers
USA Today bestselling author and Texas native, Kate Stewart, lives in
North Carolina with her husband, Nick. Nestled within the Blueridge
Mountains, Kate pens messy, sexy, angst-filled contemporary romance, as
well as romantic comedy and erotic suspense. Kate’s title, Drive, was
named one of the best romances of 2017 by The New York Daily News and
Huffington Post. Drive was also a finalist in the Goodreads Choice awards
for best contemporary romance of 2017. The Ravenhood Trilogy,
consisting of Flock, Exodus, and The Finish Line, has become an
international bestseller and reader favorite. Her holiday release, The Plight
Before Christmas, ranked #6 on Amazon’s Top 100. Kate’s works have
been featured in USA TODAY, BuzzFeed, The New York Daily News,
Huffington Post and translated into a dozen languages.
Kate is a lover of all things ’80s and ’90s, especially John Hughes films and
rap. She dabbles a little in photography, can knit a simple stitch scarf for
necessity, and on occasion, does very well at whiskey.

Contact Kate- Email-authorkatestewart@gmail.com

Facebook Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/79348...

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Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/?hl=en

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Displaying 1 - 30 of 2,407 reviews
Profile Image for Christy.
3,915 reviews33k followers
June 28, 2020
5+ stars!

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I’m not sure if I’ve EVER had this much fun reading a book. Or laughed as hard while reading. Or had such a HUGE BOOK HANGOVER. I am obsessed with this story. Days after reading and my mind was still on Theo and Laney. I love a lot of books, but rarely do they stay with me like this or have such an impact. Especially the rom-com types, but this book was truly exceptional!

Have you ever heard the term ‘Nice guys finish last’? Theo certainly has. He’s always been the nice guy, the band geek, the sweetheart, and he’s never got the girl. He’s roommates with Troy, who is is opposite. Star of the football team and all around ladies man. Then Theo meets Laney. Way out of his league, but they click.
“We can hang out,” she smiles back at me as she rolls away, “ and live our realest life.”

Laney and Theo become the best of friends. Laney usually goes for the hot guys, the Troys of the world. It’s not that Theo is unattractive, he’s just overlooked. The closer these two become as friends, the more Laney begins to really see Theo.
We’re polar opposites. I’m way too country and he’s a whole lot of everything else. We shouldn’t fit, but we do, and our fit is nothing short of spectacular.

Friends to lovers is one of my absolute favorite troupes and this was done perfectly. You saw the build up right before your eyes. It’s funny how people become so much more beautiful to you when you truly get to know them. The friendship, the anticipation, the sexual tension, and the explosiveness when it finally comes to fruition… gah! I love it!

The Guy on the Right is by far the funniest book I’ve read all year and one of the funniest books I’ve read ever. There was one scene I laughed so hard I was crying. It was hilarious, had a ton of heart, and just the right amount of angst. I don’t say this lightly, but it was seriously the perfect book. There wasn’t one thing I didn’t absolutely love about it. Watching Theo and Laney fall for one another was everything.
I might’ve fallen slowly but I just landed impossibly deep.

Fellow readers, you need this book in your life. I read the entire thing from cover to cover in one night. I couldn’t put it down. I can’t recommend it enough. I love new adult romances and books that make me laugh, smile, and feel. This book had all that in spades. And as always, Kate Stewart’s writing was impeccable. The humor was spot on and it was just so great. I could go on and on about how much I loved it, but I think you get it by now! A top top favorite of the year and one I highly recommend!

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Profile Image for emma.
1,868 reviews54.5k followers
August 13, 2020
They say if you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all.

Unfortunately for you all, I don’t live my life by the rules. But if you prefer to live a life that is not cursed by negativity and darkness and occasionally has pleasantries in it, you may want to navigate off of this review.

And also all of my reviews, forever, until the end of time.

This book is the worst.

I usually dislike books for one of two reasons: either it’s not my cup of tea and I just don’t enjoy it, or it’s offensive and messed up.

This is the rare reading experience in which I hated every second of it for BOTH of those reasons. Making history over here!

Let’s start numbering our complaints, shall we?

1) If I thought jokes about Hitler and neurodivergent people were funny, I could be losing brain cells watching any standup special from 2011. Instead of by reading this book from (checks notes) 2019??? If you told me the only reason this was published LAST YEAR was because it’d been in a time capsule until then, I’d accept that as a more logical explanation immediately.

2) Our main character, Laney, otherwise known in my head as Quirky City, Population 1, is white. This does not stop her from dressing up as a black person for Halloween. She doesn’t do blackface but she does speak in a blaccent, and let me tell you I would start my life over from scratch and live from birth to this moment again if it meant I could do so without reading this white author write as a white person speaking like a black person.

3) “‘You don’t think this is a little politically incorrect?’ he asks as I shut my door and lock it.” That’s our other main character, Theo. Again, if I thought jokes about ~political incorrectness~ were funny, I’d be into 2011 standup. Or boomer Twitter.

4) The same WHITE GIRL CHARACTER tried to give herself dreads? And is white but constantly described as brown. I guess because she’s relatively tan. It’s just the f*ckin’ worst.

5) Same character travels the WORLD at the end of the book, and her main takeaway is...drumroll please...“I’m not a fan of foreign cuisine, like at all.” Genuinely, she says she ~learned some things~ on her trip, and that’s #1 with a bullet. She doesn’t like ANY GLOBAL CUISINE EXCEPT TEXAN??? Just say you’re racist and go!!!

6) And yet, there was no mercy from this unrelenting bigotry, because I didn’t even feel the relationship that much? It didn’t feel like slow burn or friends to lovers at all. Just straight up...two people who want to bone. Which is all well and good, but not enough plot to distract me from this suffering by a goddamn mile.

7) “You’re nothing like any other girl.”

Enough said.

Bottom line: Baby has a new least favorite book!


sometimes i read books even when i'm 99% sure i won't like them. it's the optimist in me. or the masochist
Profile Image for Bibi.
1,288 reviews3,234 followers
September 22, 2020
Oh my

This was incredible and exactly how slow-burn ought to be done. Love Theo so damn much. I suggest you do yourself a favour by reading this. 😍🥰
Profile Image for Malene.
1,227 reviews569 followers
August 8, 2019
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This is how you write a romantic comedy to my hearts desires. OMG! The Guy On The Right was a blast! Hilarious, cute and romantic as hell. I even got as close as to pissing myself. Yup that’s right. Theo and Laney are insanely funny. A hoot. So opposite but so so right for one another. They just work.
Theo is a good guy who doesn’t get all the girls. He doesn’t want all the girls. He wants the ONE and all the emotions that comes along with it. He’s not a one night stand kind of guy like his roommates.
Theo meets the outspoken and spontaneous Laney outside in the dark at a party. Even though they can’t see each other’s faces the connection is immediately. They unload on each other thinking they will never meet again. Well think again.

The second time the meet each other I was done for. Theo and Laney had me. Hook, line and sinker.
Their friendship and courtship was filled with so much humor, romance and laugh out loud moments. Starting with an instagram page. It was truly a beautiful friendship in the making and as they started to spend more time together, stripping layers of each other, they both discovered how special this bond they had created was. The build up was flawlessly written and as the story and their friendship progressed I started yearning for them to just give in and KISS. The pent up tension was insane and the reward was explosive. So damn hot and so worth it.
As opposites as Theo and Laney are they complement each other perfectly. Their families and friends especially Theo’s 3 older sisters and Laney’s mother and bestie Devin are fun and deliver memorable moments too.

The Guy On The Right is the perfect feel good, laugh out loud, swoon worthy summer book. Strangers who become best friends who become so much more than lovers. It’s a roller coaster of laughs and romance. From sniping hunting, to getting high to a tornado. Just to name a few highlights. It’s not even half of it. Just jump on board the Kate Stewart express and hold on for the ride.
Kate Stewart delivered comedy with her Balls In Play series and with The Guy On The Right she excels and has created a home run. Theo and Laney gave me all I could’ve ever imagined. A love story to remember. What a couple!

5 Taco & Grand Band Man Stars


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* Teasers used is off the authors facebook page *
Profile Image for Chelsea (chelseadolling reads).
1,479 reviews19.4k followers
December 31, 2019
3.5 stars. I have complicated feelings about this one. I LOVED the characters and the relationship between them, but there were times when the author chose to have them do and say things that honestly made me feel a lil uncomfy. The main character is a white girl but there were scenes that she was referred to as having "brown skin" and even a scene in which she spends the entire chapter imitating a famous black character and it just.. felt weird to me? Idk. Overall, I did enjoy this book but I can't pretend that there weren't some parts of it that really just made me feel a little... icky
Profile Image for ❥ KAT ❥ Kitty Kats Crazy About Books.
2,223 reviews8,031 followers
July 30, 2019
This book right here pulled me out of one mother of a book funk!
I’ve struggled for a few days with picking up books and putting books back down, nothing had been able to hold my attention..Until now!!

This was such a fun book to get lost in!! It took away the winter blues!! I giggled, I swooned, I sighed, I loved! I even wanted more!!

Unique, unputdownable, undeniably an easy 5 star read!! So so good!!
Profile Image for Lana ❇✾DG Romance❇✾.
2,055 reviews12.2k followers
September 13, 2019
We shouldn’t fit, but we do, and our fit is nothing short of spectacular. There’s no wool in the world thick enough to make me blind to that.

If you're a fan of the friends-to-lovers trope, this is simply a must read. The Guy On The Right was one of those books that sneaks up on you and makes you fall head over heels. It's cute, light and somewhat unassuming at first. You meet Theodor, Teddy to his annoying sisters, and his fall fast and hard for his subtle and down to earth charm. The guy is roommates with the biggest manwhore on campus and football royalty. So he's used to flying under the radar of Troy's hotness. After his last relationship left him decimated, he's not exactly the most confident of guys. But then an accidental meeting changes everything.
I’ve most definitely been friend-zoned, or in my case, Teddy’d.

Laney just got out of another disastrous relationship. After coming to the conclusion that she's been dating the wrong men, she decides that a break from penis is exactly what she needs.
I’m turning over a new leaf. I’m done with Batman.”
“It’s a syndrome. A type. I’m done.”
“Think about it, Batman is the booty call superhero. Sexy-half face, looks amazin’ in the uniform, BUT, he only answers to the signal, at night. He never takes off his mask and only reveals his true colors once he’s already bedded the girl. I’ve been dating nothing but Batmen.”

When Theo accidentally overhears her drunken breakup and later runs into Laney again, an unlikely friendship blossoms between them. This soon turns to something that catches both of them unaware. The bond between them becomes so strong that it soon leads to the realization that there's definitely something else beneath the friendly jokes and camaraderie. Something that Theo and Laney are both too nervous to act on so that they don't ruin their friendship.

Admittedly, the first 40% of the book had a lot of dialogue. The buildup between these two was very much a slow burn. While I love a good slow burn, I did struggle a little to get into the story. There's a lot of camaraderie that happens that was cute to read about but didn't feel...necessary. At least not for me. But then, right around the 40% mark, the story totally snuck up on me and clobbered me over the head with the cute feels. I was completely enamored with the characters and the story and couldn't bear to put it down for even a second. I was totally sucked in!

The second half of this book was absolute swoony perfection. I loved watching Theo really come into his own and let that hidden dominant side out. I loved that he was a genuine nice guy but still very much an alpha. I adored his protective and sweet side. And I absolutely fell head over heels for his insecure and vulnerable side.

Laney was a wonderful heroine. I loved her sass and backbone and the way she wasn't shy about fighting for Theo, even if it was Theo himself. I loved how she loved him. But I especially loved watching their relationship slowly and organically blossom into something more. At first I was afraid that she had more chemistry with Troy and Theo would fade into the background. But I was so happy that wasn't the case. Theo was very much the center of the story.

This was one of those light hearted and funny romances that's slow to start but sizzles oh so hot when it finally gets going. Adorably sweet with just the right amount of sexy, it stole my heart and kept a smile on my face from beginning to finish. I can't wait to get Troy's story next!

ARC courtesy of author in exchange for an honest review

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Profile Image for Shabby  -BookBistroBlog.
1,516 reviews817 followers
July 26, 2019
B.E.A.U.T.I.F.U.L. & S.P.E.C.T.A.C.U.L.A.R., fairy tale story of an underdog and a nice boy who DOES finish first. He DOES get the princess. The Princess rescues him actually and kicks his Ass while doing so.
This story is like a softly played tune, a gentle summer breeze, a subtle scent of citrus and mint.
They don't overrun your senses but creep slowly and surely till you forget what life was before you experienced this magic.
"Years from now, when we tell our story, I know my version. It will be about a young girl who went from hopeful to a hopeless romantic in a few notes that only her Prince Charming could play. He didn’t show up on a white horse declaring that she hops on before he gallops away. No, this prince got off his horse, fell on his ass, and stumbled in the mud with her until she could mount her own stallion. And then, in one last act of bravery, he gently trotted beside her into the unknown."


NEVER HAVE I EVER read a story like this...
Never have I ever been this bowled over by Kate's immense talent...
Never have I ever been MORE in love with her beautiful soul, than I have been after I closed this book..
Gentle romance with a real hero- Theodore "Teddy" who doesn't wear a cape. He gets swallowed in the shadows of hunky chiseled Alphas he stands next to, until a Gypsy Heart wanders over in her Rust colored Dinosaur and rescues this adorable boy from the Ghost Pains.


I'm not telling y'all a single thing no more, you need to go in blind and fall in love with a big THUD. Like on-yo-ass with no-falling-out kinda love with this amaze balls story yo'self!
It's a guide to look beyond the superficiality of buff good bods and peek in the beautiful heart within instead.
"I’m unsure if I’m worthy of such a gift. The gift of knowing him, of seeing him this way, of being on this side of his affection. I might’ve fallen slowly, but I just landed impossibly deep."
Real, feel good story about living the Realistic Life and not what people project on instatories (I loved the hashtags.)
It's full of REAL emotions, REAL insecurities and REAL feelings of simple average people who don't have ripped linebacker bodies but have MABS-maybe abs. Who don't throw OTT grand gestures of love but silently hold your hair when you puke and are there for you when your heart breaks...in other words which you generally Friendzoned or "Teddy'd"


"My gypsy heart no longer beats that beatnik way. It now thrums in a happy and monogamous rhythm, spelling out his name every four beats. Theo’s carefully carved his place in my life and over my heart. It’s etched all over me."
I'm so hungover, so enamored, I'm still lying in those pages.
My only problem- I wanted it to go on and on.. Hilarious situations are scattered throughout between Theo and Laney, Theo and his demented Trio of sisters, Theo and his Housemates, it's just heartfelt and sweet and cute and makes you shed tears and tickles you, you uproariously laugh and grin wide throughout the book😀


P.S I married the Guy on The Right and got my Happily Ever After
#TotallyHungover #KateIsMyBae #INeedTheo #LivingMyRealestLife #ReadingTheBestestStories
#GranismsAreLife #BestRomComOfTheYear #UnderdogsWillRuleTheWorld #NiceGuysFinishFirst #TroysAreOverrated #CrazyLaneyAndTheGrandBandMan#NotAllHeroesWearCapes #TheTuffMan #CountryGirlGetsAllOtherMusicMan #BeatThePrince #ItsJustUs
#TheGuyOnTheRight ❤️
6 stars for men who worship clitoris
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Profile Image for Patty ~ Wrapped Up In Reading Book Blog.
1,260 reviews10k followers
July 28, 2019
*****FIVE STARS*****
{ARC Generously Provided by Author}

I want more, but I would rather go without than lose him. It’s fear that has me shaking in his arms. I’ve never felt so much in my life at once. Passion, lust, fear, ache, need, hope.

I have been a fan of Kate Stewart for years now. She is the Queen of the “slow burn” romance and she pulls it off magnificently once again with ”THE GUY ON THE RIGHT”. Theo wasn’t your typical swoon-worthy Hero. At first, he comes off as being the nerdy and somewhat awkward sidekick. Theo and Laney are so completely different that I didn’t think these two could ever have “white-hot” chemistry. I should have known that Kate would eventually ignite the spark between Theo and Laney in such a way that my heart was fully invested in this couple. Theo Houseman went from band geek to a sexy as hell book boyfriend, and Laney might be one of my most favorite of Kate Stewart’s Heroines.

Laney and Theo both have been burned by their past relationships. They vow to be strictly friends and for a while, this works for them, until one day they no longer want to remain in the friend zone. I’m not going to lie, it took quite a while for things to heat up but once they did, I 100% felt the chemistry between them. Their relationship was as equally heartfelt as it was passionate. But when demons from their past come back to haunt them, their love is put to the ultimate test.

Here are my overall ratings:

Hero: 5
Heroine: 5
Plot: 5
Angst: 4
Steam: 5
Chemistry Between Hero & Heroine: 5

”THE GUY ON THE RIGHT” is currently available. This was such an entertaining and heartwarming story. I highly recommend it!!

AMAZON US: https://amzn.to/2y8wVdl
AMAZON UK: https://amzn.to/2MlHL7Q
AMAZON CA: https://amzn.to/2GHUBtR
AMAZON AU: https://amzn.to/2Y7gixQ
Paperback: https://amzn.to/2SFt3dc

Profile Image for Hulya Kara Yuksel.
932 reviews1,094 followers
July 30, 2019
OH MY GOSH!!! I LOVED this book soooooo much. I had a really great time with Theo & Laney. <3

And I must say this book is one of the best of 2019. ;)
Profile Image for NMmomof4.
1,548 reviews3,978 followers
August 1, 2019
4 Stars

Overall Opinion: This was a great surprise! I really enjoyed the banter and sarcastic humor between the mcs. Not all authors can pull off sarcasm, but I think Ms. Stewart did amazingly! I also loved the H soooo much! My one and only gripe was the ending. I don't get why NA books never have good endings! I get that they're young and they might not be there yet -- but why not a jump ahead epilogue?! I usually am drawn by and enjoy NA books, but this is a consistent problem for me. Will it stop me from reading NA books? Obviously not, but just thought I'd throw my 2 cents out into the universe again in case anyone is listening 😜

Brief Summary of the Storyline: This is Laney and Theo's story. Theo had been burned by his ex and is shocked to find out that he lost his virginity in the worst way at a college party and he can't even fully remember how it all went down. He meets Laney after unintentionally eavesdropping her phone conversation in dumping her now ex. They hit it off right away but remain in the dark where they are able to fully be themselves and vent over their rough nights. They meet again and the easy rapport and friendship returns instantly but with an uunderlying attraction since they see each other for the first time. That attraction grows stronger as they become inseparable best friends and they finally give in to it and fall in love. There are some insecurities at play, some funny laugh out loud moments, some hot sexy times...and they get a HEA ending.

Point Of View (POV): This alternated between Laney and Theo's POV.

Overall Pace of Story: Good. I never skimmed and I thought it flowed well.

Instalove: No, they are friends first that develop stronger feelings.

H (Hero) rating: 5 stars. Theo. Theo, Theo, Theo! I loved him!! He was super cute and romantic, sweet, sarcastic (my favorite), and sexy!

h (heroine) rating: 4.5 stars. Laney. I really liked her. She was sassy, smart, and wasn't ashamed of her sexual side.

Sadness level: Low/moderate. I shed a few tears, but I never needed any tissues.


Heat level: Hot. They have some hot tension, chemistry, and scenes -- but not so much it takes away from the story.

Descriptive sex: Yes

OW (Other Woman)/OM (Other Man) drama: Yes

Sex scene with OW or OM: Not on page

Cheating: Not between mcs

Separation: Yes

Possible Triggers: Yes

Closure: This had a cute epilogue but nowhere near enough closure for me!! My greediness is showing, I know, but I wanted so much more of this couple!

Safety: This one should be Safe for most safety gang readers
Profile Image for Lau ♡.
416 reviews343 followers
March 29, 2021
I’ve just met the man of my life and his name is Theo Houseman.

Sadly for me, he’s the hero of a book I’m not part of and he’s already taken. Excuse me as I follow the example of his lucky GF and gorge myself on Doritos ice cream to digest this terrible break up.

Tears apart, The Guy on the Right is a college romance, slow-burn friends to lovers with the cutest couple, a lot of fun and great secondary characters.

Laney (h) is a hard working, independent woman. All her relationships have been a disaster and she is beginning to think there isn’t a man she would be able to fall in love with.

Theo (H) is a good guy with a big heart. He is tired of seeing women falling for playboys like his roommate Troy. He wants a girlfriend to worship, to treat her like a princess. Instead, every day he makes breakfast to the random girl Troy spent the night with.

She lifts to her toes and presses a kiss to my cheek.

“You keep doing that,” I say, my voice coated in whiskey and arousal.

“You keep letting me.”

I lean down and kiss her cheek before slowly pulling away. Her eyes widen before she smiles. “What was that for?”


Theo is the man every girl dreams about. He is always making tiny priceless details to show his love and is not afraid of expressing his feelings. Also, he plays the piano, along with seven more instruments. (I played the cello when I was younger, we will make the perfect duo 😉) *sighs* Why is he so perfect?? I know he has insecurities and he’s too hard on his roommate but, I’m my opinion, it only makes him more human.
I don’t even know who to describe him to do him justice, but if you love beta heroes, you are going to fall head over heels for him.

I open it to see Theo standing at my door, holding the largest bouquet of flowers I’ve ever seen. (..)

“Good God, man, did you buy the whole flower shop?!”

“I asked for one of each.”

“So I could finally decide on one?”

“No,” he leans in pressing a gentle kiss to my lips, “so you could have them all.”

I’m warning you: this couple is so cheesy you are going to need a shot of insulin to lower your amount of sugar in blood while reading it. But if you are looking for a sweet romance, this is perfect for you.

“So, Theo?”


“As in Theodore?”

I grimace. “Unfortunately.”

“As in Teddy?”

“Absolutely not,” I say with such authority, I’m rewarded with a giggle that strikes me right in the throat.

But this book is not only sweet romance. Theo and Layne are really fun together and they are always messing with each other. They click since the moment they meet, and they quickly become best friends. I love that their banter doesn't stop when they get together, they are still best friends - but with benefits - and adorable scenes in between.

Last but not least, here are some Grannisms because they made my day:
*(Grannism: Granny’s best quotes)

↬"If someone truly cares for you, you won’t ever have to wonder about it."

↬“The world is full of assholes, don’t be one of them”

↬“You aren’t hungry, you’re bored.”

I recommend The Guy on the Right to everyone who enjoys: friends to lovers, slow burn, light and fun romances, beta heroes and kind, hard-working heroines. Thank you to all the friends who recommended me this book!! I LOVE it!!❤️

“I think about you all the time. If I’m reading, I think about what you might think of the book. If I’m driving, I wonder what you’ll think of the song playing.”

River Flows in You (Just because it's my favourite piano song and I was imagining Theo playing it)

↬ Series:
1. The Guy on the Right: 5 stars❤️
2. The Guy on the Left: 2 stars.
Profile Image for MELISSA *Mel Reader*.
1,360 reviews1,442 followers
July 30, 2019
5 Stars!
(ARC provided by author/ Wordsmith Publicity)

-She’s a second look kind of girl. The first look at her is for simple appreciation for the stunner she is. The second look is a realization of what an idiot you were for not looking longer the first time around.

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Theo Houseman is a 21 yr. old junior at Texas Grand University. He lives in College Station where he rents a place with two football athletes who are every woman’s dream. He’s a former band geek, who grew up with three older sisters who called him Teddy. Now he’s Theo. A college guy with a fresh start who knows what he wants. He might be the dependable good guy, but he shouldn’t be underestimated, because when he finally lands the girl if his dreams, he will do anything to keep her. This feisty, independent brunette is his opposite in every way, but she gets him.

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Laney Cox is a senior at TGU. She’s decided she’s done dating for a while, and then she meets Theo. He’s not her usual type, but something about him is really appealing. They just click, and it’s easy and effortless between them. They become the best of friends who form a real, genuine connection. They talk about everything and are inseparable. As they spend more time together, they become even more drawn to one another. Together they just make sense. Neither wants to ruin this friendship that’s so important to them, but feelings are getting harder and harder to ignore.

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-No man has ever looked at me the way he did after he kissed me.

-He’s with me, utterly and completely lost in our connection.

-“You, sir, have single-handedly brought magic back into my life.”

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The Guy On The Right by Kate Stewart is a hilarious friend’s to lovers college romance. Let me start by saying Theo Houseman is freaking awesome!!! This is a guy who is nice, but knows his worth. I loved that he wasn’t willing to just settle, and his confidence was super sexy. Then his heart... this man’s heart was stunningly beautiful, and one of a kind. I couldn’t quit laughing and smiling while reading this book. It’s pure joy, and one of the best romantic comedies I’ve ever read! Kate Stewart will now have two books on my tops reads of 2019. I can’t stop thinking about these characters. Pick up this book! You are in for a treat with Theo Houseman! ❤️❤️❤️

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-Grannism- Not all men are created equal. Half of them were created due to God’s sense of humor.

Profile Image for mel ☽.
367 reviews8,587 followers
January 3, 2020
#1: the guy on the right5 stars
#2: the guy on the left3 stars
#3: the guy in the middletbr

but can we have more “guy on the right” type of heroes though??

friends to lovers, slowburn, perfect amount of drama, college setting, funny af scenes, TONS of sexual tension, and how they talk about the clear difference between lust and love? damn this book has everything i like.

ive been reading so many romance novels where the MCs say they love each other but all they did was have sex so i don’t really believe em when they say the L word, but here, we get to see the progression of their relationship that comes so naturally to me that i BELIEVE them when they said their i love you’s. honestly, this is one of the most important things i look for when im reading romance and im so glad it was well done here!

seriously tho, i have the biggest crush on Theo and i literally want to marry him. and Laney? she’s so crazy, i love her.

and can someone please tell me if Lance (H’s recluse roommate) will get his own book? will Troy (OM; H’s man ho/jock/arrogant roommate)? ahhh i need to know because they seemed so interesting!

anyways, this is definitely one of the best friends to lovers i’ve ever read ♡.

update: I definitely picture Theo as the actor who played Carter from the Happy Death Day and Josh To All The Boys I've Loved Before.
Profile Image for EmBibliophile.
531 reviews1,354 followers
August 2, 2019
4.25 ‘#livingourrealistlive’ stars

We’re polar opposites. I’m way too country and he’s a whole lot of everything else. We shouldn’t fit, but we do, and our fit is nothing short of spectacular.

This book brought joy to my life. It was there for me to cheer me up after my awful dentist appointment. It was there to entertain me during my long seven hours shift, where I don’t even get paid! This was such a hilarious adorable romance that brightened my mood.

”We get an A plus for chemistry, Houseman.”

Theo is such a nice guy, kinda geeky, with some insecurities, and he’s so good! He has always been the nice good guy who never gets the girl. Completely different from his roommate, Troy. A football star and a ladies man. Then he meets Laney. Both are completely different and she’s kinda out of his league. What starts as a sweet adorable friendship turned to something more when they slowly developed feelings and their chemistry became undeniable.

”And don’t think for one second I won’t toss you in front of me at the first sign of danger, because I’m not that guy. You will die first.”

Friends to lovers romance is such a great trope when it’s done right. And this book nailed it! It was such a hilarious adorable book, With a very likable characters. I enjoyed their banters so much. And those “Grannisms” were so freakin awesome!

I might’ve fallen slowly but I just landed impossibly deep.

Song recommendation:

Crazy he calls me by Billie Holiday
If I can’t have you by Shawn Mendes
Profile Image for Julia.
623 reviews564 followers
August 2, 2019
3 'I'm deeply conflicted' stars.

In the span of this book I was prepared to give this any star rating imaginable. The beginning was 2 then it went up to 4, then back down to 3 and.... you get the idea.

My main issue with this book is the blurb and how it didnt match the story. I was expecting a story about an OM that relentlessly tries to get between the MC's undying love for each other. Not what happens. In fact Troy, who is supposed to be the OM, was barely in this at all and the blurb doesnt fit the story until the 95% mark. So now youre just reading chapters and chapters and c.h.a.p.t.e.r.s. of the H and h being goofy with each other. Normally I wouldn't mind this but there was just so much of it and none of it was romantic in my eyes. I'd say 75% of their interactions are platonic and had zero chemistry. Even at the 40% mark of the book the h was still trying to decide if she liked the H, and the H was still a little jealous over his ex. I skimmed ALOT because there were alot of chapters where nothing was happening.

The misleading blurb had me very distracted because I kept reading and expecting something different. Or imagining how I would have written this if I was the author.

While there were alot of things wrong with this I will mention the things this author got right.

First! A hero that is a normal 21 year old man. He felt real and authentic. He wasnt a billionaire bachelor or whatever alpha-hole everyone else writes about. He was an underdog in all the ways that make men like him attractive to read about. I want more authentic male representation in books so im not constantly reading about men who are literal scum of the earth that get a HEA.

Second! The heroine had more sexual experience than the Hero. By alot. THANK YOU!

Third! This book didn't rely on overused stereotypes. None of the characters fell into your typical college 'buckets'.... maybe except for Troy who is the typical sports star manwhore. But as for the main characters, they were fleshed out and not what you would normally expect.

Safety: Man, this is where you lost me.

-Hero is a virgin at the beggining of the book right. Sounds good right? Wrong. He loses his virginity to a random girl at a party. He feels like shit for it and goes outside so he can sulk. This is where he finds the heroine breaking up with her boyfriend. The H and h than have a heart to heart about how he lost his virginity. <---- im mad this happened. Why did the book have to start off this way?! it left a really bad taste in my mouth that lingered for almost the entire book.

-Troy, OM, hits on the h like... twice. And then causes drama at the end. H thinks the h is interested in OM and causes them to breakup for a few weeks.

-Slight OW drama. H's ex pops up once but she doesnt want him back. H's ex has sex with Troy and the H finds her in their apartment the next morning.
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
Profile Image for Astrid - The Bookish Sweet Tooth.
794 reviews891 followers
August 25, 2019

AUTHOR: Kate Stewart
RELEASE DATE: July 29 2019
RATING: All of the Stars!


Kate Stewart's climb to the top is unstoppable. If you had asked me if this author could top DRIVE, my favorite book by her and one of my top favorites of all times, I would have said no. Good thing I didn't put any money on that because with THE GUY ON THE RIGHT Kate Stewart has done exactly that. May I present: My new top favorite by this author (by a tiny fraction but still).

Laney is my kind of gal, my spirit animal, the yin to my yang. Quirky, funny, open, fiercely independent, brutally honest and so incredibly sweet, I wanted to be her best friend. She had sass and a hilariously smart mouth. Theo thought the same, obviously. He makes nice look sexy. He is dependable as they come, hilarious and not as cocky and self confident as we are used to and for some reason that makes him even more swoon-worthy. He was cursed blessed with three busybody sisters who couldn't keep their noses out of his life.

When the meet, they both aren't ready for relationships but they damn sure become each other's best friend fast. Their friendship was so solid, so exemplary, so tight, the best wingmen covering your six, the sidekicks everybody should have. I fell hard for both of them.
We’re polar opposites in some ways. I’m too country, and he’s a whole lot of everything else. We shouldn’t fit, but we do, and our fit is nothing short of spectacular.

The build up of their attraction and sexual tension was almost subtle but oh so delicious - while I was still basking in their beautiful friendship, they were like "nope, game over" and, whoa, all of a sudden I was witness of one of the hottest kiss scenes. From then on I was lost. Lost to both characters, irrevocably in love. We know that Kate Stewart is also a masterful storyteller, so a little angst on the side is a must - but fear not, it's the perfect amount to keep things interesting.
“She’s my favorite person in the world, and I can’t imagine not knowing her.

If you follow Ms Stewart on social media you know what a quirky, funny bird she is. We know that she can write angst like a fiend but I was waiting for her to finally write a RomCom and I wish she'd never write anything else. OK, that's a lie, but I'd so be up for more of her brand of hilarity. I had such a blast with THE GUY ON THE RIGHT and I can't recommend it enough if you need a pick-me-up.
“Your accent. You keep forgettin’ the G.”
“I’m well aware my accent is thick. Some people think it’s charmin’.”
“Like the toilet paper?”

Profile Image for Arini.
857 reviews1,766 followers
March 28, 2020
#1 The Guy on the Right — 4 Stars
#2 The Guy on the Left — 4.5 Stars
#3 The Guy in the Middle — 4.5 Stars

These two quotes pretty much sum up my relationship with this book if you just replace Theo’s name and his related pronouns with the title of this book.

“How did I not see this? How could I not have seen this incredible man for what he is? In a matter of life-altering hours, Theo has just become the most irresistible man I’ve ever known. If I’m completely honest, I’ve been falling for him, in pieces, since the night we met.”

I’m so glad I didn’t skip out on this bcs it was LOL hilarious and unputdownable. I was taken by surprise bcs this didn’t feel like the Kate Stewart book I’d read in January. I suppose this was bcs it’s a romcom while the last one I read was more angst ridden adult romance.

“I might’ve fallen slowly, but I just landed impossibly deep.”

The characters were refreshing even though the H could get quite annoying when he was all judgy and whiny. The h is batshit crazy and unapologetically herself. The banter had me cracking up with tears in my eyes. The story had a ton of heart and just the right amount of angst. The romance did ‘slow burn’ justice.

Admittedly sometimes I felt like the book was going nowhere bcs the H and h kept goofing around with each other until a little more than halfway through the book. In addition, I think the blurb is quite misleading bcs the OM drama didn’t fully manifest until about 80% into the book.

That being said, I wasn’t at all turned off by this. The humor had enough in it to help me fly through the pages and the writing was flawless. I’d for sure recommend this, especially those who love friends to lovers books! Or if you’re currently in a slump, I think this book might just be the one to save you.
Profile Image for Jessica .
2,129 reviews13.8k followers
July 30, 2020
Updated 7/30/20: After hearing some recent reviews for this book, I am dropping my rating down to 3 stars. The main character dresses as Madea for Halloween and it is harped on over and over how no one understands who she is dressed as while she imitates the character (she is not actually in blackface, she just dresses as the character) and that is definitely not something that's okay. It felt tasteless, especially upon reflection. I have never watched Madea nor know much about the character, but there isn't a reason for that to have happened in this book and was not funny as the author intended it to be.

I was also made aware of a line referring to someone as being "special" and the statement following that was very gross and ableist in the book. Overall I did enjoy the romance, but these things shouldn't be looked over and I regret that I didn't realize these issues as I was reading it last year for the first time.
Profile Image for Melanie A..
1,086 reviews421 followers
August 13, 2019
"I love that you can fill every role in your own life. But I don't want anyone to ever take mine."
GAH! By the end, the romance in The Guy on the Right had melted me into a loose-limbed puddle on the floor. SO FABULOUS!

Plot: Laney's a smart, beautiful university senior who's a bit flaky, but she's sticking to her one firm decision: no more hot men. She's done with them.

Theo's just a regular university junior who wasn't just burned by his high school sweetheart, he was singed to a crisp.

This unlikely pair meets and strikes up a friendship.

So my love for this story ran DEEP, but it sure didn't start out that way:
0-50% ===> 3 STARS
50-100% ==> 5+ STARS
During the first half, I was CURSING Kate Stewart. Here she was, presenting me with a nice, likable, polite, all-round decent Hero and all I could do was grimace . . . because Theo Houseman wasn't just a beta, he was a BETA!

Yes, Ms. Stewart has proven beyond a shadow of a doubt that I am the shallowest reader on the planet.

And it wasn't just Theo's lack of assertiveness that I had a hard time with. Honestly, I felt like I do when I watch an episode of The Office: uncomfortable. Laughing, yes, but so damn uncomfortable; the 'bathroom' humor between the guys, the way Laney laughed at Theo's expense. Ugh.

BUT . . . and I can't stress this BUT enough . . . it was all leading to such WONDERFUL things.
If I'm completely honest, I've been falling for him, in pieces, since the night we met.
Me too, Laney. Me too.

Ms. Stewart went from my nemesis to a genius of epic proportions, one who had orchestrated an INCREDIBLE love between two people who had hidden depths and turned out to be perfect for each other.

Theo and Laney, TLF. <3

I HIGHLY recommend, especially if you're a fan of the friends-to-lovers trope.
Profile Image for h o l l i s .
2,476 reviews1,893 followers
April 11, 2021
So, funny story, I had never actually read the synopsis for this book, only inferred from the cover what it might be about, plus friend reviews and word of mouth, and I'm glad I didn't glance over it before one-clicking and picking this up, because I don't think the summary is accurate to the vibe of this book at all! My advice? Don't read it, just read the book.

That said, I'm left feeling a little bowled over by this read. I had been hearing rave reviews from friends for ages but, like most good things, kept putting off actually reading it. But after a recent string of disappointing fantasy reads I though, well, I need to mix things up anyway, so..

I'm so glad I reached for this.

"I've got mabs."
"Maybe abs?"

This is a nice-guys-don't-finish-last best-friends-to-lovers romance and it might be my new favourite friends to lovers story. I don't read many of them, it's just not the trope I lean into very much, but this one? Puuuuurrrrfection.

We shouldn't fit, but we do, and our fit is nothing short of spectacular. There's no wool in the world thick enough to make me blind to that.

The enduring hilarity and loveliness of this friendship, the epic tension and build to the shift in their relationship, the steamies.. everything was (chefs kiss). I expected the big blow up, and the why, and I never really love that anyway, and so I didn't really love this one either, but the grovel, the make up, moment? Oh wow. Fabulous. Grand gestures don't always land for me, but this one? It fit so beautifully.

Both characters are a little offbeat, a little unexpected, though neither come off as a manic pixie dreamgirl or the alternative loner that another author might have made them out to be, and the complexity of both characters is what makes them feel real, genuine, and like people you'd want to be friends with. It rounds out the story and makes the whole thing that much more memorable, too.

Also, that cover? So perfect with context.

If you want laughs, feels, swoons, and just a really great feel-good story (she says, with tears drying on her face)? You need this in your life.

4.25 stars


This review can also be found at A Take From Two Cities.
Profile Image for Jenny••Steamy Reads Blog••.
987 reviews1,850 followers
July 30, 2019
Lord oh lord how I absolutely love this book. I read this on an entire flight, seriously capture my attention and didn't let it go. Six hours into a 9 hour flight and I was like HOLY CRAP theres no way its been that long. A total catch you book❤️

This read, it is everything. I enjoyed it, had so much fun reading it. Completely fell in love with Laney & Theo. And yes, I laughed my butt off, fell head over heals, may have shed a couple EXTREMELY happy tears, seriously just everything in a perfect book was included in this amazing read. It's the friends to lovers trope, its the slow burn you on fire book, and this is a book that stays with you its that damn sweet!

I can't recommend this one enough to you romance lovers. This author has knocked my socks off with her writing in the past, but this book, this one has to be my favorite by her. IF you haven't got this one ordered yet, DO IT! You'll need this book in your life❤️💗💜

Profile Image for Deanna❤Pink Lady❤️.
819 reviews842 followers
August 6, 2019
4 #sweetromance Stars

This was a very sweet, cute, light, romantic, feel good read. It’s a slow burn, friends to lovers trope set in a college town. I may be a little biased as I went to college in College Station, Texas.

The band geek, Theo, is smart, sweet, and musically gift. But the band geek is also a really great guy who just thinks that he falls short. He’s friends with the football players who are everything. He’s been burned by a girl that he loved and is very hesitant to let himself fall again.

The girl, Laney, is a Spitfire. She’s beautiful, sassy, confident, and is tired of dating the wrong kind of guys. She juggles jobs and classes and lives at home with her mom. She just lost her Gram and her best friend is getting married.

The first part of the story was solidifying Theo and Laney‘s newfound friendship. I will say that it was a little slow start for me but around 45% the story really picked up. I found that going from friends to lovers is when the story really opened up for me. I loved that the story was filled with sweet humor as it was wrapped around new love beginning to bloom. And what shined through in this book was that people’s personalities are what matters in the end. Getting to know a person and seeing past beauty or imperfections is what brings people together. Theo and Laney had undeniable chemistry that started from honesty and deciding to open up to one another. But while this relationship all was too good to be true, an unavoidable hiccup happened and the angst, the anger, the hurt and the pain felt so very real and relatable. I will say the cast of secondary characters were absolutely wonderful. I enjoyed them all and they definitely added sparkles to the story.

This cute and light story made me smile, giggle, feel good, and reminded me of my fun college days. This author captured the essence of friends to lovers in the most sweetest of ways. She wrote great banter between the characters, had them connecting through being themselves and added the quirky and zany moments that had Theo and Laney rethinking being just friends. A delightful romantic read that will make your summer all the more brighter.

*advanced copy provided by author in exchange for an honest review*
Profile Image for Angie - Angie's Dreamy Reads.
689 reviews13.5k followers
July 28, 2019
I have a book hangover. The WORST book hangover. This story is incredible. I'm writing my review now, but it must be said, YOU NEED TO READ THIS BOOK. It's feel good romance with all the laughs, swoon, feels, and sexy! PERFECTION.
Profile Image for  Nayeli ✨.
111 reviews116 followers
June 17, 2022
⭐ 4.5 stars ⭐

(I'm changing the rating because I miss this series so much, and this book was everything🤧)

❝If someone truly cares for you, you won't ever have to wonder about it.❞

➻English Review

I loved this book! It was cute, fun and fast paced. This is a friends-to-lovers and rom-com book, so if you like that kind of stories, you may want to check this out. 🙆🏼‍♀️

Theo was such a great, handsome and very very funny character. He's 100% boyfriend material, I need a Theo in my life asap! 😍
Laney (our heroine) was such a strong and determined woman, and very funny too. Tbh they were the perfect couple, loved every single moment of them. Their chemistry and friendship *chef's kiss*

I highly recommend this book if you want to read something quick and adorable. Spoiler, you're going to laugh a lot!

#livingourrealestlife ❤️

❝Love 'em enough to let them brake your heart but learn enough so they don't break your spirit.❞

➻Reseña en Español

¡Me encantó este libro! Fue muy lindo, divertido y rápido de leer. Es una comedia romántica de "amigos a enemigos", así que si este es tu tipo de libro, deberías chequearlo! 🙆🏼‍♀️

Theo fue un personaje increíble, guapo y muuuy divertido. Estoy 100% segura de que es un protagonista que tiene todas las características para ser un buen novio jajaja. ¡Necesito un Theo en mi vida! 😍
Laney, por su parte, fue un personaje de carácter fuerte y determinado, y muy divertida también. Estos dos sin duda alguna eran la pareja perfecta con todas sus rarezas incluídas😂 Además, la química entre ellos dos y su amistad, puff...fue increíble!

Lo recomiendo si quieres leer una historia rápida y adorable. Spoiler, vas a reír mucho!

#livingourrealestlife ❤️
Profile Image for Ley ♡.
110 reviews114 followers
June 11, 2020
5 stars ✨

"If he’s paying attention to the right things, you’ll rarely ever have to give directions."

What a lovely read!! Both MCs are two lovable fluffy cheesy humans and I love them together. I am in love with Theo. He is the sweetest and being a musician made him even more perfect. I have a soft spot for someone with a passion for music. They are just that attractive.

Also, this quote is just beautiful I HAVE to put it here.

"this prince got off his horse, fell on his ass, and stumbled in the mud with her until she could mount her own stallion. And then, in one last act of bravery, he gently trotted beside her into the unknown."
Profile Image for Ainhoa.
382 reviews17 followers
November 27, 2022
I’m always late to the party with hyped up books and sometimes it’s a shame because they’re actually good.

This time the four stars go to the texan cuteness Laney was. Don’t get me wrong, I understand why everyone’s obsessed with Theo but she was definitely something else and I loved the strong woman vibes she was sending everywhere and everyone 🥺

So I’m in love with her. And a bit in love with her nerdy band boy as well.
Profile Image for Sentranced Jem.
1,118 reviews580 followers
August 5, 2019
The Guy on the Right was the most unexpected book of the year for me. And what an awesome book it was!
This book was surprisingly a breath of fresh air. I loved Theo. He definitely was not the typical bad boy book boyfriend that I usually swoon over.. nah uh.. Theo is one the good guys. He's the nerdy band geek we tend to pass over while we swoon and go gaga over the bad boy. Shame on me cause I may have missed out on hundreds of Theo's in my endless list of favourite book boyfriends.

Laney... I loved this character too. I loved her weirdness, I love her love of tacos. I loved how unapologetic she was about herself.
I am jealous of her bond with Devin, her best friend. true example of sister from another mother.

I couldn't have found a more perfect love interest for these two characters.

now, lets get back to Theo. Man... Theo is one of the good guys. I don't think he has a bad bone in his body. I love his family. I love his interactions with his sisters (A scene stealer for sure!)

The Guy on the Right was an unexpected one. This one creeps up on you and weaves it's magic around your heart.
Before you go and perhaps think "oh it's one of those cute romance stories", let me just stop you right there... This book is insanely good. yes its cute and funny. Yes it's a story of friendship, love and trust but let me tell you, Kate Stewart doesn't pull back on the unbelievable chemistry and scenes between Theo and Laney. My kindle was buzzing! When they get together? OH MY LORD!! 🤯it's electrifying. Insanely hot sex scenes *fanning myself*

A must read!

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