The lead characters’ well-defined intimacy gives this uneven tale a boost of energy.

DEADLOCK

From the Hacker World series , Vol. 1

In Lynn’s (Enticing Iris, 2019, etc.) romantic thriller, a software engineer seeks help from an alluring hacker who had a complicated history with her missing twin sister.

Lindsey Morris is accustomed to her identical twin’s flakiness, but she’s infuriated when Lena skips out on their parents’ anniversary party. Lena finally responds to Lindsey’s messages with a vague text, telling her to get help at a particular address. Lindsey first goes to her sister’s trashed apartment, where a strange man calling himself “Griffin” shows up, claims to know Lena, and asks Lindsey not to notify the police. Lindsey then goes to address that her sister supplied, where she’s surprised to see a man she knows: Jace Adams. Lena had asked Jace to hack into MIT’s system years ago to change her grade, which resulted in him getting the boot from the university. Lindsey convinces him that she’s not Lena, but he’s reluctant to help her search for her missing twin. Still, he and Lindsey quickly grow close, and he soon shares his suspicions about who may have abducted her sis. It turns out that Jace works for the Nest, a clandestine group of white-hat hackers whose former member has a vendetta against him. Lena’s disappearance, however, may have to do with yet another secret. In any case, Lindsey, a highly skilled coder, is determined to find her, even if she has to do it alone. Lynn successfully establishes a believably contentious relationship between the two leads. Jace initially has trouble trusting Lindsey, as he’s hated her sibling for years, and Lindsey, quite rightly, deems him “a real asshole” shortly after they meet. Nevertheless, a mutual physical attraction is there from the start, and their sympathy for each other gradually grows into affection. Lynn also keeps the plot moving at a steady clip, with steamy, sometimes-explicit sexual encounters and instances of imminent peril. However, the story’s technological aspect feels stunted, as readers hardly see Lindsey’s capabilities; her covert installation of software, for instance, involves little more than plugging in a flash drive, and she tackles another problem by merely rebooting a computer.

The lead characters’ well-defined intimacy gives this uneven tale a boost of energy.

Pub Date: June 25, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-64063-535-7

Page Count: 416

Publisher: Entangled: Amara

Review Posted Online: June 25, 2019

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Heartfelt and funny, this enemies-to-lovers romance shows that the best things in life are all-inclusive and nontransferable...

THE UNHONEYMOONERS

An unlucky woman finally gets lucky in love on an all-expenses-paid trip to Hawaii.

From getting her hand stuck in a claw machine at age 6 to losing her job, Olive Torres has never felt that luck was on her side. But her fortune changes when she scores a free vacation after her identical twin sister and new brother-in-law get food poisoning at their wedding buffet and are too sick to go on their honeymoon. The only catch is that she’ll have to share the honeymoon suite with her least favorite person—Ethan Thomas, the brother of the groom. To make matters worse, Olive’s new boss and Ethan’s ex-girlfriend show up in Hawaii, forcing them both to pretend to be newlyweds so they don’t blow their cover, as their all-inclusive vacation package is nontransferable and in her sister’s name. Plus, Ethan really wants to save face in front of his ex. The story is told almost exclusively from Olive’s point of view, filtering all communication through her cynical lens until Ethan can win her over (and finally have his say in the epilogue). To get to the happily-ever-after, Ethan doesn’t have to prove to Olive that he can be a better man, only that he was never the jerk she thought he was—for instance, when she thought he was judging her for eating cheese curds, maybe he was actually thinking of asking her out. Blending witty banter with healthy adult communication, the fake newlyweds have real chemistry as they talk it out over snorkeling trips, couples massages, and a few too many tropical drinks to get to the truth—that they’re crazy about each other.

Heartfelt and funny, this enemies-to-lovers romance shows that the best things in life are all-inclusive and nontransferable as well as free.

Pub Date: May 14, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-5011-2803-5

Page Count: 416

Publisher: Gallery Books/Simon & Schuster

Review Posted Online: March 3, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 15, 2019

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With frank language and patient plotting, this gangly teen crush grows into a confident adult love affair.

LOVE AND OTHER WORDS

Eleven years ago, he broke her heart. But he doesn’t know why she never forgave him.

Toggling between past and present, two love stories unfold simultaneously. In the first, Macy Sorensen meets and falls in love with the boy next door, Elliot Petropoulos, in the closet of her dad’s vacation home, where they hide out to discuss their favorite books. In the second, Macy is working as a doctor and engaged to a single father, and she hasn’t spoken to Elliot since their breakup. But a chance encounter forces her to confront the truth: what happened to make Macy stop speaking to Elliot? Ultimately, they’re separated not by time or physical remoteness but by emotional distance—Elliot and Macy always kept their relationship casual because they went to different schools. And as a teen, Macy has more to worry about than which girl Elliot is taking to the prom. After losing her mother at a young age, Macy is navigating her teenage years without a female role model, relying on the time-stamped notes her mother left in her father’s care for guidance. In the present day, Macy’s father is dead as well. She throws herself into her work and rarely comes up for air, not even to plan her upcoming wedding. Since Macy is still living with her fiance while grappling with her feelings for Elliot, the flashbacks offer steamy moments, tender revelations, and sweetly awkward confessions while Macy makes peace with her past and decides her future.

With frank language and patient plotting, this gangly teen crush grows into a confident adult love affair.

Pub Date: April 10, 2018

ISBN: 978-1-5011-2801-1

Page Count: 416

Publisher: Gallery Books/Simon & Schuster

Review Posted Online: Jan. 23, 2018

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 1, 2018

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