REVIEW: Need Me (Broke and Beautiful #2) by Tessa Bailey

Tessa Bailey is an auto-read for me. I go into each and every Tessa Bailey book expecting a smutty escape, not much more. Let’s be honest here, those of us who love Ms. Bailey’s books aren’t reading for the intense story lines.

I really wanted to love Need Me. Unfortunately, it just didn’t work for me.  Based on Chase Me, I was expecting something light-hearted and sexy. Instead Need Me became a wanna-be deep caricature of a teacher-student/taboo trope. There were just too many plot points that were too convenient or plain not plausible to even enjoy its smut factor fully.

Ben is a 25 year old English professor at Columbia University…yes, THAT Columbia University.

Honey is a 19 year old pre-med student. She’s driven and smart. She left her small hometown in Kentucky to come to New York City while her parents scrimp and save to help pay for her very expensive Ivy League education. Yet, she’s going to throw caution to the wind and seduce her professor risking all she’s worked for so easily.  And Professor Ben is going to risk all he’s worked for to be with his student?

And the Lolita references. Ben and Honey are only 5 years apart. Since when is that comparable to Lolita?

I tried to just roll with it. Really, I tried. Alas, I couldn’t.

Lastly, Ben was too squishy and emo for my liking.  His moments of dirty alpha didn’t feel authentic either. Then, what he does to Honey and how she forgives him repeatedly…

This story felt rushed and not well researched for the sake of getting another book out on the heels of Chase Me.  What saved Need Me from a lower rating was the supporting cast of friends to Honey and Ben. I enjoyed getting to know more about these characters as a “supergroup.”  Together they gave me the light-heartedness of this series that I desired.

Rating: ⭐️⭐️½

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