A beautiful exploration of both grief and romance starring a lovably hilarious heroine.

LUCIE YI IS NOT A ROMANTIC

Desperate for a baby, a single woman attempts to find a partner through a website for potential co-parents—but when feelings develop, things get complicated.

Lucie Yi knows she wants a child, but her journey to parenthood has been bumpy. After having a miscarriage, she suffers another devastating blow when her boyfriend cheats on her. She flees Singapore to work in New York City, where she can deal with her grief far away from reminders of her old life. But with her biological clock ticking louder and louder, Lucie knows she needs to act fast if she wants the baby she’s always dreamed of. The dating pool isn’t offering any potential fathers, but then she discovers Co-Family.com, a platform that one of her friends describes as “Tinder for would-be parents.” A platonic co-parenting situation is just what Lucie wants—she can’t deal with another heartbreak. When she meets Collin, she knows he’ll make the perfect father for her child. He’s willing to move to Singapore, where she wants to raise their child, and best of all, she doesn’t have any pesky feelings for him. But when she gets pregnant and they make the move back to her home country, things get complicated. Because of the intense social stigma around unwed mothers in Singapore, Lucie and Collin have to tell her parents that they’re going to get married. And then Lucie’s cheating ex, Mark, shows up. He claims he’s changed and wants to be together, but spending so much time with Collin has made Lucie realize that she might want other things. Should Lucie take the unconventional path with Collin and risk screwing up their platonic co-parenting situation, or should she fall into the safe comfort of Mark’s arms? Ho delicately balances grief, romance, and humor. There are many laugh-out-loud lines (including Lucie’s thoughts as her body changes during pregnancy), but Lucie’s sorrow over what she lost—both a baby and her imagined future—always rings true. This is best shown in a particularly touching scene in which Lucie attends a support group for grieving parents.

A beautiful exploration of both grief and romance starring a lovably hilarious heroine.

Pub Date: June 21, 2022

ISBN: 978-0-593-42226-7

Page Count: 416

Publisher: Putnam

Review Posted Online: March 25, 2022

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 15, 2022

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With captivating dialogue, angst-y characters, and a couple of steamy sex scenes, Hoover has done it again.

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REMINDERS OF HIM

After being released from prison, a young woman tries to reconnect with her 5-year-old daughter despite having killed the girl’s father.

Kenna didn’t even know she was pregnant until after she was sent to prison for murdering her boyfriend, Scotty. When her baby girl, Diem, was born, she was forced to give custody to Scotty’s parents. Now that she’s been released, Kenna is intent on getting to know her daughter, but Scotty’s parents won’t give her a chance to tell them what really happened the night their son died. Instead, they file a restraining order preventing Kenna from so much as introducing herself to Diem. Handsome, self-assured Ledger, who was Scotty’s best friend, is another key adult in Diem’s life. He’s helping her grandparents raise her, and he too blames Kenna for Scotty’s death. Even so, there’s something about her that haunts him. Kenna feels the pull, too, and seems to be seeking Ledger out despite his judgmental behavior. As Ledger gets to know Kenna and acknowledges his attraction to her, he begins to wonder if maybe he and Scotty’s parents have judged her unfairly. Even so, Ledger is afraid that if he surrenders to his feelings, Scotty’s parents will kick him out of Diem’s life. As Kenna and Ledger continue to mourn for Scotty, they also grieve the future they cannot have with each other. Told alternatively from Kenna’s and Ledger’s perspectives, the story explores the myriad ways in which snap judgments based on partial information can derail people’s lives. Built on a foundation of death and grief, this story has an undercurrent of sadness. As usual, however, the author has created compelling characters who are magnetic and sympathetic enough to pull readers in. In addition to grief, the novel also deftly explores complex issues such as guilt, self-doubt, redemption, and forgiveness.

With captivating dialogue, angst-y characters, and a couple of steamy sex scenes, Hoover has done it again.

Pub Date: Jan. 18, 2022

ISBN: 978-1-5420-2560-7

Page Count: 335

Publisher: Montlake Romance

Review Posted Online: Oct. 13, 2021

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Nov. 1, 2021

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A warm and winning "When Harry Met Sally…" update that hits all the perfect notes.

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PEOPLE WE MEET ON VACATION

A travel writer has one last shot at reconnecting with the best friend she just might be in love with.

Poppy and Alex couldn't be more different. She loves wearing bright colors while he prefers khakis and a T-shirt. She likes just about everything while he’s a bit more discerning. And yet, their opposites-attract friendship works because they love each other…in a totally platonic way. Probably. Even though they have their own separate lives (Poppy lives in New York City and is a travel writer with a popular Instagram account; Alex is a high school teacher in their tiny Ohio hometown), they still manage to get together each summer for one fabulous vacation. They grow closer every year, but Poppy doesn’t let herself linger on her feelings for Alex—she doesn’t want to ruin their friendship or the way she can be fully herself with him. They continue to date other people, even bringing their serious partners on their summer vacations…but then, after a falling-out, they stop speaking. When Poppy finds herself facing a serious bout of ennui, unhappy with her glamorous job and the life she’s been dreaming of forever, she thinks back to the last time she was truly happy: her last vacation with Alex. And so, though they haven’t spoken in two years, she asks him to take another vacation with her. She’s determined to bridge the gap that’s formed between them and become best friends again, but to do that, she’ll have to be honest with Alex—and herself—about her true feelings. In chapters that jump around in time, Henry shows readers the progression (and dissolution) of Poppy and Alex’s friendship. Their slow-burn love story hits on beloved romance tropes (such as there unexpectedly being only one bed on the reconciliation trip Poppy plans) while still feeling entirely fresh. Henry’s biggest strength is in the sparkling, often laugh-out-loud-funny dialogue, particularly the banter-filled conversations between Poppy and Alex. But there’s depth to the story, too—Poppy’s feeling of dissatisfaction with a life that should be making her happy as well as her unresolved feelings toward the difficult parts of her childhood make her a sympathetic and relatable character. The end result is a story that pays homage to classic romantic comedies while having a point of view all its own.

A warm and winning "When Harry Met Sally…" update that hits all the perfect notes.

Pub Date: May 11, 2021

ISBN: 978-1-9848-0675-8

Page Count: 384

Publisher: Berkley

Review Posted Online: March 3, 2021

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 15, 2021

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