Ideal for readers looking for the book version of a pleasant Hallmark movie.

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HAPPY SINGLES DAY

Sparks fly when a Type A professional organizer ends up at a B&B run by a grumpy single dad.

Paige Parker needs a vacation. As a busy professional organizer, she centers her entire life around work. So when she discovers the charming Copper Lantern Inn on the Outer Banks of North Carolina while taking an online quiz, she thinks it looks like the perfect retreat. But she doesn’t count on Lucas Croft, the inn’s owner. He’s a widower with a small child, and he hasn’t maintained the B&B since his wife died two years ago. It was their dream to fix up the old house, but without her around, he sees no use in hosting guests…or cleaning, cooking, or doing anything but taking care of his 4-year-old daughter. But when his sister, Sophie, books Paige for a stay, Lucas has no choice but to welcome her with extremely sullen arms. Paige is alarmed to find clutter everywhere, and her meals consist of frozen pizza and near-empty boxes of Froot Loops. But as Lucas and Paige get to know each other, they realize they might actually be a perfect match. Walker excels at creating a cozy, charming setting—the picturesque island and ramshackle inn seem like an appealing escape. The characters’ actions occasionally seem a bit forced, though, and Lucas is sometimes overly unpleasant, even for a classic grumpy hero (he refers to Paige as an “uptight bitch” for no real reason). But romance lovers looking for forced proximity, characters overcoming tragedy, and a movie-worthy setting may be willing to overlook those flaws in favor of a warm and cozy read.

Ideal for readers looking for the book version of a pleasant Hallmark movie.

Pub Date: Jan. 19, 2021

ISBN: 978-1-72821-649-2

Page Count: 304

Publisher: Sourcebooks Casablanca

Review Posted Online: Oct. 14, 2020

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Nov. 1, 2020

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A clever, romantic, sexy love story.

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RED, WHITE & ROYAL BLUE

The much-loved royal romance genre gets a fun and refreshing update in McQuiston’s debut.

Alex Claremont-Diaz, son of the American President Ellen Claremont, knows one thing for sure: He hates Henry, the British prince to whom he is always compared. He lives for their verbal sparring matches, but when one of their fights at a royal wedding goes a bit too far, they end up falling into a wedding cake and making tabloid headlines. An international scandal could ruin Alex’s mother’s chances for re-election, so it’s time for damage control. The plan? Alex and Henry must pretend to be best friends, giving the tabloids pictures of their bromance and neutralizing the threat to Ellen's presidency. But after a few photo ops with Henry, Alex starts to realize that the passionate anger he feels toward him might be a cover for regular old passion. There are, naturally, a million roadblocks between their first kiss and their happily-ever-after—how can American political royalty and actual British royalty ever be together? How can they navigate being open about their sexualities (Alex is bisexual; Henry is gay) in their very public and very scrutinized roles? Alex and Henry must decide if they’ll risk their futures, their families, and their careers to take a chance on happiness. Although the story’s premise might be a fantasy—it takes place in a world in which a divorced-mom Texan Democrat won the 2016 election—the emotions are all real. The love affair between Alex and Henry is intense and romantic, made all the more so by the inclusion of their poetic emails that manage to be both funny and steamy. McQuiston’s strength is in dialogue; her characters speak in hilarious rapid-fire bursts with plenty of “likes,” “ums,” creative punctuation, and pop-culture references, sounding like smarter, funnier versions of real people. Although Alex and Henry’s relationship is the heart of the story, their friends and family members are all rich, well-drawn characters, and their respective worlds feel both realistic and larger-than-life.

A clever, romantic, sexy love story.

Pub Date: June 4, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-250-31677-6

Page Count: 432

Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin

Review Posted Online: March 4, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 15, 2019

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Mirror mirror on the wall, it’s fun, charming, and sure to enthrall.

A DUCHESS A DAY

Regency meets fairy tale in this lighthearted romance series opener.

Lady Helena Lark is sent to London to marry a duke even though she’d rather stay home and be an apple farmer. She's tried to escape the marriage by feigning sickness and madness and even running away, but nothing has worked. The wedding looms, and she has one last plan: Get the duke to fall in love with someone else and jilt her. Mercenary Declan Shaw, known as “Huntsman,” is in prison for a crime he didn’t commit when he’s offered a chance out. The duke’s uncle hires him to watch over Helena until she makes it down the aisle. Helena wants Declan to be her ally, though, and Declan finds the relentless woman irresistible. She soon reciprocates his feelings, making it all the more important for her plan to succeed. The lead characters propel the story. Helena is persistent, adventurous, and the perfect complement to thoughtful Declan. The way they work together and revel in each other’s company is so joyful. Though the story never takes itself too seriously, it tactfully touches on power dynamics based on class and gender. Inspired by “Snow White,” there are nods to the source material and fun twists on notable elements such as seven potential duchesses instead of dwarves. This entertaining romance leans into its fairy-tale roots with just the right amount of over-the-top whimsy.

Mirror mirror on the wall, it’s fun, charming, and sure to enthrall.

Pub Date: Nov. 10, 2020

ISBN: 978-0-06-298495-1

Page Count: 384

Publisher: Avon/HarperCollins

Review Posted Online: Oct. 14, 2020

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Nov. 1, 2020

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