The wit and nuanced shadings of Moyes’ best are unfortunately missing in this predictable tear-jerker, a pale echo of the...

SILVER BAY

More earnest and less quirky than Moyes’ later successes, Me Before You (2012) and One Plus One (2014), this romantic novel originally published in Britain in 2007 centers on the moral and emotional crises faced by a buttoned-down Englishman who disrupts the tranquility of an isolated coastal community in New South Wales when he scopes it out for a high-end resort.

For the last six years, Liza and her 10-year-old daughter, Hannah, have lived in Silver Bay with Liza’s feisty 76-year-old aunt Kathleen, who owns a hotel that's seen better days. Liza, who skippers one of several whale-watching boats in the bay, seems overprotective of Hannah; it gradually becomes clear that Liza escaped England under a cloud six years ago and is hiding from the outside world. Enter Mike, a methodical junior partner in London’s Beaker Holdings. While his fiancee, Vanessa—who happens to be the boss’s daughter—finalizes wedding plans, Mike heads to Silver Bay, where Beaker Holdings hopes to build a large luxury resort. Staying at Kathleen’s hotel and becoming increasingly friendly with the locals, Mike doesn’t let on why he’s really there. He and Liza share an obvious attraction, which only increases when he saves Hannah’s life after the boat she’s snuck into the bay gets entangled in illegal netting. Then Vanessa shows up. Once Mike’s connection to the developers becomes known, his popularity plummets. Learning from Kathleen that his plans might put Hannah at risk, Mike wakes up and tries to right the situation, first with Vanessa’s help and then on his own, whatever the sacrifice to career or love. Meanwhile, standard-issue Victim-with-a-capitol-V heroine Liza faces the demons of her past in attempting to stop the development. Of course, virtue, innocence and love win out over greed and shallow sophistication.

The wit and nuanced shadings of Moyes’ best are unfortunately missing in this predictable tear-jerker, a pale echo of the 1983 film Local Hero.

Pub Date: Aug. 26, 2014

ISBN: 978-0-14-312648-5

Page Count: 384

Publisher: Penguin

Review Posted Online: July 1, 2014

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 15, 2014

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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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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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