A frothy, fabulous romantic comedy.

READ REVIEW

SHOPPING FOR A BILLIONAIRE

From the The Shopping Series series

Kent (Shopping for a Billionaire’s Honeymoon, 2017, etc.) offers a compilation of Shopping stories full of pop culture, witty dialogue, and great sex.

Shannon Jacoby is a mystery shopper who goes undercover to conduct quality-of-service investigations for her clients. She’s scoping out a men’s restroom when Declan McCormick, one of the most eligible bachelors in Boston, literally knocks her off her feet. Their attraction is immediate. Declan likes Shannon’s “realness” (she’ll order a steak rather than the expected salad). Shannon is incredulous that she seems to have landed the handsome billionaire, though she loves the self-assured woman she is becoming with Declan. They drift along in romantic bliss until a frightening medical emergency, a scheming ex-boyfriend, and a social media maven upend their romance. The collection includes the first five of Kent’s Shopping for a Billionaire series—nearly 500 pages of the often hilarious ups and downs of Shannon and Declan’s relationship. Kent has a gift for witty dialogue and memorable characters. Rather than physical descriptions, she uses evocative analogies to animate her characters. Declan “smells like a weekend in Stowe at a private cabin with skis propped against the back wall, a roaring fire in a stone fireplace that crawls from floor to ceiling, and a bearskin rug that feels amazing against all your naked parts.” Shannon is a likable hero who has knack for landing in situations that are equal parts cringeworthy and entertaining. While the sexual innuendos are sometimes a bit too much—at an ice cream parlor, Shannon compares marshmallow and caramel sauce to the viscosity of another “salacious fluid”—the novel is at its best when it focuses on Declan and Shannon’s evolving relationship. Beneath the humor, sex, and absurd situations, this is a sweet love story about a man who adores a woman and a woman who finally realizes her own self-worth.

A frothy, fabulous romantic comedy.

Pub Date: Jan. 9, 2015

ISBN: 978-1-68230-731-1

Page Count: 498

Publisher: EverAfter Romance

Review Posted Online: Feb. 15, 2018

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 1, 2018

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Anyone who believes in true love or is simply willing to accept it as the premise of a winding tale will find this debut an...

ONE DAY IN DECEMBER

True love flares between two people, but they find that circumstances always impede it.

On a winter day in London, Laurie spots Jack from her bus home and he sparks a feeling in her so deep that she spends the next year searching for him. Her roommate and best friend, Sarah, is the perfect wing-woman but ultimately—and unknowingly—ends the search by finding Jack and falling for him herself. Laurie’s hasty decision not to tell Sarah is the second painful missed opportunity (after not getting off the bus), but Sarah’s happiness is so important to Laurie that she dedicates ample energy into retraining her heart not to love Jack. Laurie is misguided, but her effort and loyalty spring from a true heart, and she considers her project mostly successful. Perhaps she would have total success, but the fact of the matter is that Jack feels the same deep connection to Laurie. His reasons for not acting on them are less admirable: He likes Sarah and she’s the total package; why would he give that up just because every time he and Laurie have enough time together (and just enough alcohol) they nearly fall into each other’s arms? Laurie finally begins to move on, creating a mostly satisfying life for herself, whereas Jack’s inability to be genuine tortures him and turns him into an ever bigger jerk. Patriarchy—it hurts men, too! There’s no question where the book is going, but the pacing is just right, the tone warm, and the characters sympathetic, even when making dumb decisions.

Anyone who believes in true love or is simply willing to accept it as the premise of a winding tale will find this debut an emotional, satisfying read.

Pub Date: Oct. 16, 2018

ISBN: 978-0-525-57468-2

Page Count: 400

Publisher: Crown

Review Posted Online: July 31, 2018

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 15, 2018

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Packed with riveting drama and painful truths, this book powerfully illustrates the devastation of abuse—and the strength of...

IT ENDS WITH US

Hoover’s (November 9, 2015, etc.) latest tackles the difficult subject of domestic violence with romantic tenderness and emotional heft.

At first glance, the couple is edgy but cute: Lily Bloom runs a flower shop for people who hate flowers; Ryle Kincaid is a surgeon who says he never wants to get married or have kids. They meet on a rooftop in Boston on the night Ryle loses a patient and Lily attends her abusive father’s funeral. The provocative opening takes a dark turn when Lily receives a warning about Ryle’s intentions from his sister, who becomes Lily’s employee and close friend. Lily swears she’ll never end up in another abusive home, but when Ryle starts to show all the same warning signs that her mother ignored, Lily learns just how hard it is to say goodbye. When Ryle is not in the throes of a jealous rage, his redeeming qualities return, and Lily can justify his behavior: “I think we needed what happened on the stairwell to happen so that I would know his past and we’d be able to work on it together,” she tells herself. Lily marries Ryle hoping the good will outweigh the bad, and the mother-daughter dynamics evolve beautifully as Lily reflects on her childhood with fresh eyes. Diary entries fancifully addressed to TV host Ellen DeGeneres serve as flashbacks to Lily’s teenage years, when she met her first love, Atlas Corrigan, a homeless boy she found squatting in a neighbor’s house. When Atlas turns up in Boston, now a successful chef, he begs Lily to leave Ryle. Despite the better option right in front of her, an unexpected complication forces Lily to cut ties with Atlas, confront Ryle, and try to end the cycle of abuse before it’s too late. The relationships are portrayed with compassion and honesty, and the author’s note at the end that explains Hoover’s personal connection to the subject matter is a must-read.

Packed with riveting drama and painful truths, this book powerfully illustrates the devastation of abuse—and the strength of the survivors.

Pub Date: Aug. 2, 2016

ISBN: 978-1-5011-1036-8

Page Count: 320

Publisher: Atria

Review Posted Online: May 31, 2016

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 15, 2016

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