The Flatshare is a charming romance that happens to be part of the new crop of romance novels being packaged as women's fiction. On the cover, O'Leary is referred to as "the new Jojo Moyes," but if you've read both, you won't think that. No one dies at the end, for example. It's closed door, like Moyes, so maybe that's what they were thinking?
Little reviews of The Unhoneymooners, Fluffy, and One Fine Duke.
Although the book deals heavily with grief and strained family relationships, Don't Date Rosa Santos is a feel-good summer romance that made me smile. Reminiscent of Jane the Virgin, Rosa's Cuban-American family consists of her, her mother, and her grandmother. (More on this later.) They live in a multicultural small town in coastal Florida that feels a bit like Gilmore Girls' Stars Hollow... but not so white.
For a book that pretty much opens with heartbreak, Her Royal Highness is a fairly low angst young adult romance, which means it’s totally my speed. And the charm of the book rests in how Millie (a scholarship student from Texas) and Flora (the Scottish princess) reveal their weaknesses and hurts to each other to become both friends and girlfriends.
Sometimes it’s hard to jump into the last book of a series. As a reviewer, this can happen a lot. Sometimes it can feel like you’re always playing catch-up while reading, and it’s easy to get distracted by the details. But sometimes you find a book that makes you want to go back and read the entire series. Crashing Into Her was that for me. Mia Sosa showed me a world I wanted to know more about, and even though I came in late, I’m so glad I found it.
The Chai Factor is a beautiful contemporary romance with a message. It’s fun but not fluffy, engaging but not light. Amira and Duncan’s story isn’t unseen in romance - a girl from a traditional family falls for a guy outside of her culture - but Heron tells it in such a way that’s it’s new and refreshing.
True confession: this book should not have worked for me, and yet, it totally did. Somehow between all of the things I don’t typically like (celebrities, closeted characters, a queer character hung up on a straight person), I inhaled Breaking Character. Such a satisfying slow burn.*
Meet Cute is one of those books with a cute cartoon cover that disguises some serious subject matter within. I'm starting to get used to these, but it still throws me if I don't carefully read the blurb. In the prologue, we meet Daxton and Kailyn, both attending law school together. The title refers to their first and second meetings, in which Kailyn walks right through Daxton's frisbee game and then spills coffee all over herself when trying to get into the seat next to him in class, the only seat available. Oh, and Daxton just happens to be the star of Kailyn's favorite teen drama of all time, so she fangirls and then is horribly embarassed. (He's essentially Dawson from Dawson's Creek.)
Sometimes I want to live in a haze of fluffy romances filled with heroines who are underestimated and stodgy heroes who need to loosen up. And The Lady Is Daring fit the bill perfectly. Is there some suspension of disbelief needed? Obviously. Is there a moment of “I know something bad is going to happen, why don’t the characters see it coming?” Yes. But here I am before you as someone who loves wrapping herself up in these stories.
Arctic Wild is about second chances, new adventures, and the dynamics of caring for each other. We meet imperfect people where their lives unravel, and watch them unfold beautifully into who they really are. The story honours learning to accept help and asking for what you need –physically, emotionally, and sexually. It's more about that journey than it ever is about the plane crash or being stranded together.