I’m right in the middle of Jamie Pope’s HOPE BLOOMS (review), which I’m really enjoying (more on that when I’ve finished) but I wanted to give a shout out for her upcoming release, ONE WARM WINTER (3/26). Being in the middle of roller coaster winter weather, a warm read sounds delightful, and this one is getting some great reviews! (Kirkus, alas, did not love it. Review here.) This is the second in the Sunny & Warm series, which started with MOSTLY SUNNY (review). Unfortunately these titles aren’t in audio, so I don’t know when I’ll have the chance to get to them, but I love the author, so a heads up on some warm winter reads from Pope seemed appropriate .

Kate Clayborn’s Chance of A Lifetime series has gotten a lot of buzz over the past year, and, thanks to Tantor Audio, I was able to pick up Book 1, BEGINNER’S LUCK. 

When three friends impulsively buy a lottery ticket, they never suspect the many ways their lives will change—or that for each of them, love will be the biggest win of all.  

Kit Averin is anything but a gambler. A scientist with a quiet, steady job at a university, Kit’s focus has always been maintaining the acceptable status quo. A sudden windfall doesn’t change that, with one exception: the fixer-upper she plans to buy, her first and only real home. It’s more than enough to keep her busy, until an unsettlingly handsome, charming, and determined corporate recruiter shows up in her lab—and manages to work his way into her heart . . .

Ben Tucker is surprised to find that the scientist he wants for Beaumont Materials is a young woman—and a beautiful, sharp-witted one at that. Talking her into a big-money position with his firm is harder than he expects, but he’s willing to put in the time, especially when sticking around for the summer gives him a chance to reconnect with his dad. But the longer he stays, the more questions he has about his own future—and who might be in it. 

What begins as a chilly rebuff soon heats up into an attraction neither Kit nor Ben can deny—and finding themselves lucky in love might just be priceless . . .

Clayborn’s cast of characters feel as authentic as your next door neighbor, and their conflicts are spot on. We get Kit’s distrust of Ben; we feel his disappointment in himself when he blows their first meeting. The internal dialogue and resulting stomach-churning angst feel as realistic as 3 am heartburn after midnight pizza, while the couple’s dance between attraction and wariness never feels annoying or engineered.

The series hook is a great concept, followed through with smart writing and fun characters. Highly recommend. I’ll be working on books 2 and 3 soon, too! We’ve already seen the seeds of one of the friend’s romances, I believe. (By the way, as of yesterday the Kindle copy of the book was only $.99.)

Devil's Daughter There is no shortage of great books right now, is there? I can’t wait for THE HUNTRESS (review) by Kate Quinn (2/26); DEVIL’S DAUGHTER (review) by Lisa Kleypas; THE OBJECT OF YOUR AFFECTIONS by Falguni Kothari (2/19); and THE BEAUTIFUL STRANGERS by Camille Di Maio (3/5).

So what about you? are you staying warm? Cozying into your covers while you dive into a book or two? What titles are you most looking forward to?