I hope you’re all staying safe and healthy. The world is… A really really huge mess right now. And while I’m not saying that you should stick your head in a romance novel and ignore everything around you, I’m also not NOT saying that? I just want to encourage self care, OK? If you need to bow out of the news cycle for a couple of hours and lose yourself in someone else’s love story, by George, you DO THAT.
Love Her or Lose Her by Tessa Bailey- I was very lukewarm on the first book in this series, but this installment popped up on sale so I decided to give it another shot. I’m glad I did. I was way more invested in Dominic and Rosie than in Georgie and Travis (the combination of the clown costume and his ‘baby girl’ nickname just did NOT do it for me.) Dominic and Rosie, however? Whew. It hit just the right notes. They go to therapy (which is actually pretty hilarious), both characters work through some things, and the two cannot keep their hands off each other. It was fun and flirty and not particularly realistic but WHATEVER I LIKED IT.
Neanderthal Seeks Human by Penny Reid- This book just didn’t work for me. The whole thing was oozing that “not like other girls” vibe. Like, the heroine Janie was appealing because she was smart, which is awesome. I love it when dudes like women for their brains (and shortly thereafter find their whole entire selves irresistible, of course.) But. Janie constantly slut shamed other women and every woman who wasn’t directly in her knitting group was portrayed in a negative light. Everyone seemed to be set up as competition for Janie getting her super hunky CEO/Bodyguard Quinn. If Penny Reid is a favorite of yours, please continue to enjoy her work. As for me though? I think I’ll pass. Then again, who knows? I changed my mind on Tessa Bailey and that turned out well, so perhaps I’ll try another in a few months.
Tokyo Ever After by Emiko Jean- Holy CUTENESS! It’s like the early 2000s classic film, What a Girl Wants, or the perfection of The Princess Diaries, only our heroine discovers she’s actually the daughter of the crown prince of Japan. (I’ll save you the Googling- the Imperial Family of Japan is still totally a thing, but they don’t have any political power. It’s very similar to most of the remaining monarchies in Europe. IE- this story is more rooted in the real world than, say, the fictional country of Genovia.) Izumi has grown up with a single mother in a small, mostly white, Northern California town. Her world is rocked when one of her besties discovers her father’s identity. Then? Cue fish-out-of-water and cultural faux-pas montage. It’s exceptionally well done, though, and you end up rooting so so hard for Izumi. I will be reading every future installment of this series, cannot recommend highly enough if you need that bright sort of joy in your life right now.
I think that’ll do it for me this week, Bookworms. Stay safe and healthy, wear your seatbelts, you know the drill.
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