Most of the time when I pick up a book, the author is a faceless figure to me. I’m rarely up to speed with the goings on of the literary community, and I pick up a lot of books by authors who are new to me. Half the time I don’t even know if the author is a male or female, what with the use of initials and such. This book is a bit of an exception. Lost and Found is the first novel released by author Chris Van Hakes (the pen name of a blogger I’ve always enjoyed, Shalini of Reading and Chickens.)
Shalini and I have had a few conversations on twitter and traded comments on blogs, but I wouldn’t call us besties or anything. (Unless you want to be, Shalini. Because we have SERIOUSLY bonded over THE TWITTER. There will always be a place for you at my imaginary slumber party.) I’m telling you all of this because I’ve never known an author I’ve reviewed before, and I think you’re supposed to disclose that sort of thing… What’s also important to mention is that Shalini did NOT ask me to review her novel. I went and bought it with my own dollars because I was curious. I’m a curious sort of gal.
Lost and Found is a sweet little piece of chick lit, and it totally satisfied my craving for a romance novel. Delaney has just moved back to her hometown of Park Glen (which is SUPPOSEDLY in a Central Illinois college town, which I obviously assumed to be based on Peoria. Because I’m self centered and Peoria is MY Central Illinois college town. We have tons of old Victorians that have been converted into apartments, many of them in dodgy neighborhoods.) Anywho, Delaney has moved back home after a breakup with her long term boyfriend/douche nozzle (term employed liberally in book) named Cliff. She ends up living across the hall from a cantankerous doctor named Oliver who is a pretty big douche nozzle himself. The key there is that he’s a douche nozzle with layers, see?
I have to admit, I never completely warmed up to Oliver- he was kind of a jerk for most of the book. Also, Delaney was sweet, but maddeningly doormat-ish. Delaney suffered from vitiligo, which is a skin condition that leads to white, discolored patches of skin. She’s super sensitive about it, though nobody else seems to notice it. Obviously, the two fall in love, and there are complications, and also pie. (Delaney likes to bake.) It’s a romance novel, so there’s nothing spectacularly groundbreaking about the subject matter, but the way it’s written is so doggone cute. The characters have pithy dialogue, the group of gal-pals is squeal-worthy, AND Delaney is a librarian. It’s certainly an impressive inaugural effort for a blogger turned author. If you enjoy romance or chick lit, I recommend giving Lost and Found a shot.
Bookworms, let’s talk about insecurities… Delaney is freaked out by her vitiligo, but she seems to be the only one who fixates on it. We’ve all got a thing. I get that way when I have a breakout. What about you?