Tag: romance

Jan 14

The Second Week of 2020

Bookish (And Not So Bookish) Thoughts, My Reading Life 8

Hello My Dearest Bookworms,

It’s been a wild week. I was not expecting to be potty training my child right now, but here we are. I figured I’d kick the can down the road a little bit and use up the last jumbo pack of diapers before we gave it a go, but Sammers had other ideas. His little daycare buddy was getting candy as a reward for using the potty and Sam wanted in. Listen, I’ve heard horror stories about how hard potty training can be, I wasn’t about to miss the window of opportunity. Am I ready? Not really. Is Sam? It would appear so. I’m terrified of jinxing myself here, so I’ll just say that I’m cautiously optimistic about the way things have been going. I have now read The Underwear Book by Todd Parr so many times that I can recite it in my sleep. Not that I’ve been getting much sleep because Sammy’s developmental milestones always seem to come with a side of “Sleep is for CHUMPS!” But. This is what he currently likes to have read to him whilst he sits on said potty.

Support Independent Bookstores - Visit IndieBound.org

This really isn’t even a potty training book, and it offers some questionable advice regarding underwear and swimming, but it may get your toddler jazzed about wearing undies.

In “books I read of my own volition with my eyeballs” news, I finally finished The Priory of the Orange Tree Tree by Samantha Shannon. This book is pure high fantasy of the vague-Medieval-setting/Magic/Dragons variety, but unlike most of the high fantasy I’ve read, it stars heroic women and POC. Epic chunky fantasy novels aren’t generally my first choice of reading material, but I like to change it up from time to time. I liked the book a lot, but I did have to put a little more effort into it than what I usually pick up. Then again, that’s true for me regarding most high fantasy- it’s a lot of names and places and magical phenomena to mentally juggle. Look- any book that offers maps and appendices with lists of characters and world-specific terminology is a lot to take on. That doesn’t mean it isn’t worth it. If you dig fantasy, I highly recommend you give The Priory of the Orange Tree a whirl.

In “books I put into my earholes” news, I finished Get a Life, Chloe Brown by Talia Hibbert. I might be a little obsessed. I loved so much about it, I hardly know where to start. First, our protagonist Chloe Brown is a freaking delight, even when she’s not. She has fibromyalgia and suffers from chronic pain but loves buttons so much that she has faux buttons sewn onto her sweaters. I liked that both the main characters had a lot of emotional baggage, both romantic and otherwise. Sure, the handsome man with the tortured past is a tried and true romance trope, but Red was a one-of-a-kind dude and dealt with his trauma with a fair amount of self awareness. Chloe had her own stuff to deal with, so she wasn’t just there to magically “fix” Red. NEITHER OF THEIR ISSUES WERE SOLVED SIMPLY BECAUSE THEY FOUND “THE ONE.” I mean, yeah, they were super compatible and very well suited to handle each other’s emotional needs, but they each also did a lot of heavy lifting to sort out their own internal messes. And sometimes they even got professional help! It was just superb and I loved it. If you’ll excuse me, I’ll be scouring Talia Hibbert’s back list.

Support Independent Bookstores - Visit IndieBound.org

Because one audio book a week simply is not enough, I ought to mention that I managed to put yet another Tessa Dare novel into my brain.  I finished up A Lady by Midnight this morning, and it was charming as usual. I have several thoughts about this book- one being that I’m fairly certain its major plot point is where Diana Gabaldon is heading with Fergus’s story line in the Outlander Series (at this point it only has a couple of throwaway hints, so it’s not canon). That’s apropos of nothing, really, I just enjoy finding commonalities between books. It’s fun to see where different authors go with similar ideas. From a romance-specific perspective, I kind of love that Tessa Dare is willing to tackle topics like PTSD. I mean, the world has been at war since forever, but people act like war-related trauma is some kind of new phenomenon. If you think the dashing officers in Jane Austen’s novels didn’t come home from campaign with emotional scars, think again. Anyway, I’ve seen Tessa Dare do this twice now, and I like it.

So where does that leave us heading into this week? And why do I feel that I can arbitrarily start reading weeks on Tuesdays or Wednesdays? Well. I’m re-reading (with my eyes) Tell the Wolves I’m Home by Carol Rifka Brunt and I’m enjoying it every bit as much as I did the first time. Although, several years have given me even more rage regarding the way Finn had to compartmentalize his life because people were jerks. Ugh. As far as my ears go, I just started Maybe in Another Life by Taylor Jenkins Reid. Daisy Jones & The Six was one of my absolute favorite reads last year (get thee to the full cast audio recording, stat!) so I wanted to dive into some of her other work. I’ve literally barely started it, though, so it’s too early even for preliminary opinions. I will say, however, that having listened to The Offspring’s Ixnay On The Hombre album on repeat throughout most of 1997, I cannot read the title of this book without hearing Dexter Holland angstily belting out the first line of “Gone Away.” Teenage Katie was something else.

Good chat, Bookworms. Let’s do this again next week.

 

*If you make a purchase through a link on this site, I will receive a small commission*

Divider

Dec 15

A Bollywood Affair by Sonali Dev

Romance 3

Hidey Ho, Bookworms!

I’m a bit of an impulse shopper when it comes to books on sale. I mean, a friend tweets that something they loved is on sale for $1.99 and I am THERE. Lightening quick one-click purchase. At least, I was. I try to be a little more careful these days, because I kind of accidentally purchased a romance novel on my company’s Amazon account. WHOOPS! Luckily, my bosses were super cool about the whole thing. They were barely phased, honestly, probably because they’ve been dealing with my shenanigans for over a decade. I was embarrassed for a hot minute, but after I cancelled the order, repurchased the book on my personal account, and read it? I haven’t a single regret. Because let me tell you something. A Bollywood Affair by Sonali Dev was an absolute treat.

abollywoodaffairMili Rathod is a married woman in the least conventional sense. To start, her marriage took place when she was a mere four years old, and she hasn’t seen her husband since the event took place 20 years ago. The situation is less than ideal, to say the least. Still, Mili’s marital status has afforded her opportunities almost unheard of for girls in her village. She managed to convince her grandmother to allow her to leave India and study in the US for 8 months in order to mold her into the perfect modern wife. You know, so she can lure her childhood husband back. It’s complicated.

Samir Rathod is a playboy Bollywood director, the toast of the town… Who is not above running halfway across the globe in order to secure a divorce for his older brother, who is in no shape to do so himself. Samir isn’t worried about convincing a simple village girl to sign the paperwork, even if he does have to go to Michigan to track her down. Instead of a naive girl or a gold digger, Samir finds Mili, a fiercely loyal, intelligent, and kind woman. Before he knows it, Samir is pulled into Mili’s life in ways he never imagined.

Right. So, yeah. This book is totally 100% a romance novel. A sweet, charming, inventive, and cheeky tale of love despite ridiculous circumstances and seemingly insurmountable odds. I loved every bit of it. Every tasty morsel. I couldn’t put the book down and I’m downright swoony over it. I mean, it was deliriously romantic AND a learned a whole bunch of interesting stuff about modern India and Indian culture. Just a pleasant reminder of why I adore books so darn much. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have a whole world of Bollywood romance novels I need to explore.

Talk to me Bookworms! What is the swooniest book you’ve ever read? I could use some romance recommendations. 

*If you make a purchase through a link on this site, I will receive a small commission.*

Divider

Oct 26

The Brazilian Husband by Rebecca Powell

Cozy Lady Fiction, Romance, Tear Jerkers 5

Olá Bookworms!

You know that thing where you do or say or think something only to realize later that it was a dumb thing to do or say or think? That’s basically my life, to be honest: I’m in a constant state of revision. But, among the dumb things I’ve done or said or thought as it pertains to this blog was that I would not accept pitches for self published books. It was snobby and shortsighted of me. I’m sure there are a lot of self published books out there in which I have zero interest, but there are a lot of traditionally published books that fall into that category too. So. I’m wrong a lot. To nobody’s surprise. All this is to say that I received a pitch from a self-published author I was completely unfamiliar with (which is totally different than reading a book written by a blogger I already love, though that has happened) and I accepted a review copy. Are you ready to hear about The Brazilian Husband by Rebecca Powell? *Full disclosure: I received a complimentary copy of this book for review consideration from the author. The following review reflects my honest opinions.*

brazilianhusbandDetermined to honor her husband’s final request, Judith embarks on a trip from London to Brazil with her reluctant daughter in tow. The trip turns out to be a bit more than Judith bargained for as she begins to uncover secrets to her husband’s past. She soon encounters Ricardo, the dreamboat/human rights lawyer/activist who helps Judith unravel the tangled web of her husband’s life in Brazil. All of this is set against the backdrop of Brazil’s favelas, corrupt city officials, and familial drama.

I can’t recall having read another book set in Brazil, so I was a little concerned a book about Brazil written by a British woman wouldn’t be terribly authentic. I needn’t have worried. A quick review of  Ms. Powell’s bio revealed she spent a year in Brazil working for a women’s shelter, so she knows a little something about the country. Plus, since the protagonist is a British woman visiting Brazil, it was the ultimate “write what you know” scenario. Although, I sincerely hope that the author’s story doesn’t totally mirror this book, because while it was a page turner, it was also heartbreaking.

It reminded me a little of Kate Morton’s work (The Forgotten Garden in particular), the way historical elements were revealed in snippets and the reader discovered the truth of the narrative right along side the protagonist. If you’re into family sagas with a bit of romance, a lot of secrets, and a smattering of tears, definitely give The Brazilian Husband a read. It’s a good one, I promise.

Talk to me Bookworms! I want to read more books set in Brazil. Bonus points if they’re written by Brazilian authors. Recommendations?

*If you make a purchase through a link on this site, I will receive a small commission. You’ll also be supporting an independent author, which is pretty great. Given the fact that the editing and formatting were on point, I imagine a professional editor was involved as well, so you’ll be supporting THAT person too. Just in case you needed to feel warm and fuzzy about indulging in the written word.*

Divider

Feb 10

What I Love/Hate About Romances in Books

Romance, Top Ten Tuesday 27

Hello Bookworms!

Today’s Top Ten Tuesday is a great topic, and perfectly appropriate for Valentine’s week. The ladies of The Broke and the Bookish have challenged us to list what we love and/or hate about romance in books. Hoooo boy, I’m excited about this one!

romanceinbooks

I’m a softy, really I am. I do love romance in books. However, I can be a little picky about it. I’m going to start with a list of a few things that drive me bonkers in bookish romances. And follow it up with what I love. Ending on a happy note is important, no?

The Hate List

1. Insta-Love: I am firmly in the Elsa camp on this one. No, little sister, you are NOT going to marry the dude you just met today. You are NOT in love with this person after 10 minutes and a musical interlude. You do NOT abandon your entire life to follow your latest infatuation. Just. No.

2. Girls without Identity- I like my romantic heroines to be a little spunky. I’m not saying that every heroine has to know exactly who she is, but girls with no sense of self who just throw themselves into crazy relationships and morph into femme-bots who only like what their boyfriends like? Not cool. (I’m throwing some serious shade at you, Ana Steele. Hmph.)

3. Poorly Executed Love Scenes- Book Riot put together a list of some hilarious (and horrible) euphemisms used in romance novels to describe human anatomy. It’s pretty much the best thing ever. If a love scene makes me giggle, it’s not a good thing. (Well it kind of is a good thing, because I like laughing, but it’s unlikely that’s what the author intended so… Yeah.)

4. Secret Keeping- I read a romance novel once in which the male character tried to convince himself not to get too close to the female character because (get this) there was a CHANCE he had an incurable (but non contagious) blood disorder. He’d basically convinced himself he was going to die without getting confirmation from a doctor and therefore couldn’t selfishly start a relationship. REALLY? “We can’t be together because SECRETS” is a terrible plot device. Stop using it, please! (The character in question turned out NOT to have said disorder, he married the heroine and I think they had babies. I didn’t want to leave you in suspense.)

5. Gorgeous People Who Seem Unaware of their Hotness: I’m all for humility, but the prevalence of women who find themselves revolting despite hoards of men falling at their feet are tiresome. Nobody is that deluded, unless they have serious psychological issues. If that’s the case, they shouldn’t be in a romance novel, they should be getting the fictional help they need from a fictional therapist. Sheesh!

allyouneedislove

 

Well, now that I’ve got that vitriol off my chest, let’s talk about some of the things I love about love in books. Loooove!

The Love List

1. Awkward People Finding Love: Some of my favorite love stories are all about the weirdos. Suave debonair gentlemen with all the right lines bore me. Give me a cantankerous bookseller with a heart of gold or a case of verbal diarrhea on a first date. That’s the good stuff.

2. Witty Banter: Inside jokes, pop culture references, and trivia make my world go round. Having had a number of these sorts of goofy conversations with my husband, I realize they don’t often translate easily (I’m pretty sure nobody would find our nonsense charming who wasn’t us) but I appreciate the effort. Yay for witty banter!

3. Well Executed Love Scenes: I’m not a prude when it comes to love scenes. I enjoy them when they’re thoughtfully put together. I’m not sure there’s a great way to define what separates the cheesy from the steamy, and it’s likely all in the opinion of the reader. Still. When done well, love scenes can be a great addition to a novel.

4. Love for the Non-Traditional Body Types: Rainbow Rowell has written some of the best plus size romantic heroines ever. I just get really happy when someone who isn’t the media standard of beauty finds love. Tall, short, heavy, thin, buxom, tattooed, birth-marked, pale, and what have you. Real people in normal life aren’t usually breathtakingly beautiful. That doesn’t mean they aren’t appealing, and that sure doesn’t mean they shouldn’t find love.

5. Historical Romance: Wait, did I just admit to digging bodice-rippers? I might have. And it might be true. Eeep!

Talk to me Bookworms! What do you love and hate about romance in books?! 

Divider

Jan 05

The Rosie Effect by Graeme Simsion!!!

Humor, Romance, Science 14

Oh Hey Bookworms!

It’s been FOREVER, hasn’t it? I know, I was off merry making and being lazy but I’m BACK and I’m pretty stoked to discuss today’s book. Remember last year when we read The Rosie Project (review) as a crew through The Fellowship of the Worms? There’s a sequel! And I read it! Eeeep! If you haven’t read The Rosie Project, stop reading right here because the whole premise of the sequel is a big fat spoiler for the first. So. SPOILER ALERT, Y’ALL! Now, let’s talk about The Rosie Effect! *OH yes, I received a complimentary copy of this book for review consideration from the publisher through NetGalley. I still have integrity, swearsies.*

rosieeffectWhen we last left them, Don and Rosie were fast tracking it to happily ever after in NYC. Rosie is double fisting it in academia working on her Psychology PHD AND Medical school, while Don is doing his genetics thing at a prestigious university. They also mix cocktails a few nights a week, for old time’s sake.

Happily Ever After seems attainable until some complications come into play… Namely? Rosie has some “something to celebrate” with Don. If you can’t guess the big news, it’s got a lot to do with zygotes and cell division… If you recall any of Don and Rosie’s adventures in dating, you’ll know that any big news probably won’t run the most smoothly.

Alright folks, let’s get down to the dirt. A lot of people are probably going to think The Rosie Effect is inferior to The Rosie ProjectFor me, as is the case with all sequels, once I’m attached to the characters I cannot wait to see what sorts of shenanigans they’ll get up to next. I love Rosie, I love Don, I love Gene and all the assorted weirdos that find their way into the story line. I thought The Rosie Effect was a fun read. If you’re not too cynical about sequels, I recommend you give this a shot.

Talk to me Bookworms, what makes you pick up a sequel? Do you have high expectations for them?

*If you make a purchase through a link on this site, I will receive a small commission.*

Divider

Oct 23

The Night Garden by Lisa Van Allen

Contemporary Fiction, Fantasy, Flowers, Romance 20

Greetings Bookworms!

The weather is changing and it’s making me miss my flowers already. I still have mums out, but it’s not the saaaaaaaame. Shortly after having to pull out my summer annuals, I was perusing NetGalley (a dangerous pastime under the best of circumstances) and ran across The Night Garden by Lisa Van Allen. I saw comparisons to Sarah Addison Allen and Alice Hoffman and simply could not help myself. *I received a complimentary copy of this book for review consideration. May I be stricken with a wicked case poison ivy if I lie in the following review.*

The Night Garden by Lisa Van AllenIs there anything better than an enchanted garden? Lisa Van Allen draws a gorgeous picture of pastoral upstate New York. Pennywort Farms boasts a lovely garden maze that seems to be imbued with magical properties that give visitors clarity on their problems. A little magical realism never hurt anyone! More likely to hurt someone is the beautiful and enigmatic Olivia Pennywort.

Olivia has SECRETS. Despite welcoming boarders into her farm as a matter of course, Olivia keeps everyone at arm’s distance. Her decision to remain aloof becomes more difficult when her childhood friend and adolescent flame Sam Van Winkle comes back to town. The two are (of course) drawn to each other, but there are some significant barriers (and histamines) standing in the way of their happy ending.

You guys, I loved this book. I couldn’t put it down, and I stayed up far too late to finish it. On a work night. Thank heaven for coffee, AMIGRIGHT? Magical realism can be very hit or miss for me, but the combination of love story, garden-y goodness, and mystical whimsy hit all the right notes. I particularly liked some of the weird science/magic fusion elements that went on. I don’t want to spoil it all for you, but if you’re at all interested, take a trip into The Night Garden!

Talk to me, Bookworms. The Night Garden spends a lot of time talking about the garden maze’s ability to provide visitors with clarity on their problems. What helps you work out your dilemmas? Asking for a friend…

*If you make a purchase through a link on this site, I will receive a small commission.*

 

Divider

Jun 12

Pirate Booty! (The Windflower by Laura London)

Romance, Trashy Romance Novels 26

Ahoy, Bookworms!

Who’s up for a little romance on the high seas? You’re not? Well, TOO BAD! A few weeks ago, I ran across an article on NPR books discussing the re-printing of a well loved romance novel from the early 1980s called The Windflower. After that kind of review, I couldn’t NOT read this, so  I downloaded a copy for myself. I must recommend reading this digitally as the cover art is so far beyond cheesy it may as well have Fabio photo-bombing the background. Don’t be fooled by the cover, though. This book was pretty fantastic.

windflower

I make no apologies for the cheesiness of this cover. At least it isn’t Fabio.

Merry Wilding lives in Virginia with her spinster aunt in 1813. The British are still kind of ticked about the whole Revolutionary War thing and are stirring up another fuss. Merry’s patriotic heart causes her to join her brother on a little scheme to help the cause when she accidentally meets with a band of pirates. Being the charming little thing she is, Merry manages to escape the situation with no more harm to her dignity than having had her first kiss (a not so chaste one, at that!)

A few months later, however, Merry’s Aunt April decides that going back to England would be the safest option for them with conflict looming. On the eve of their departure, however, Merry is kidnapped by that very same band of pirates, with the issuer of that scandalous first kiss becomes her warden.

Devon (Mr. Kissyface) and Merry spend as much time sparring as trying to deny their attraction to each other. While the two are on the outs, Merry has a chance to meet and endear herself to the rest of the pirate crew, the jolliest lot of rapscallions ever to tipple a bottle of rum.

Readers of Outlander, take note! While there are no sci/fi elements and a great deal less political intrigue, The Windflower offers the same sort of breath-catching romance that makes Outlander readers’ hearts go pitter-pat. Sure, it’s a bit ridiculous with the pirate element, but my word, I LOVED some of those pirates. Cat and Raven and Cook?! If I were ever to sail the seven seas, I’d want those scallywags on my crew!

If you have ever enjoyed a historical romance, you simply must read The WindflowerOr walk the plank. Take your pick, you scurvy dogs!

Talk to me, Bookworms. Who’s got a favorite romance? Who is willing to admit indulging in the occasional bodice ripper? Who thinks Johnny Depp as Captain Jack Sparrow was a hottie? 

 

Divider

May 01

The Mad Scientist’s Daughter by Cassandra Rose Clarke

Romance, Science 22

G’day Bookworms,

Remember back to Valentine’s Day when I crowd sourced a Top Ten Tuesday list of bloggers’ favorite romances? One of the suggestions that came from Sarah of Sarah Says Read was for The Mad Scientist’s Daughter by Cassandra Rose Clare. I made a mental note to give it a whirl, and not long afterward it showed up as a Kindle daily deal, so I snapped it up.

themadscientistsdaughterIt’s the future. Some sort of apocalypse has come to pass leaving the human race rather depleted. To make up for the lack of people to keep the world operating, science supplemented with androids. Of course, there’s going to be a rogue scientist somewhere trying to push the envelope of android manufacturing. This led to the creation of Finn, the most human-like robot ever created.

Cat’s father brought Finn home to their little cottage in the woods when she was 5. Her eccentric scientist parents weren’t keen on sending her to the local public school, so they enlisted Finn as Cat’s personal tutor.

Cat grows up with Finn as not only her teacher, but also as her closest friend. As she grows up things get… complicated. Kind of hard to have a straightforward love story when half of the equation is mechanical, you know?

The Mad Scientist’s Daughter was certainly an unconventional take on a love story. It brought up all sorts of issues to do with discrimination and the difficulties with loving someone you’re not supposed to love.

I wish I could say this book didn’t creep me out on some level, but it did. Maybe it’s just because it reminded me so much of that awful Robin Williams movie, Bicentennial Man… Maybe it’s because Finn was less engaging than Iko, the robot BFF of CinderMaybe it’s because I watched that weird episode of Jack Van Impe where he blamed “robits” for the fast approaching End of Days. LOL, nah it’s not that. Still, it wasn’t quite my cup of tea. That said, it could be yours. If you dig science fiction romance or scandalous forbidden love, The Mad Scientist’s Daughter may just be your new favorite love story.

Tell me, Bookworms. Anybody else think the last time Robin Williams was fun to watch was in Mrs. Doubtfire ? Anybody else think the sequel they’re working on sound like a horrendous idea?

 

Divider

Jan 06

Adé by Rebecca Walker

Contemporary Fiction, Romance 17

Greetings, Bookworms!

I’m not immune to peer pressure, but you already knew that. I kept seeing Adé by Rebecca Walker around the blogoshpere and I simply had to give it a try. I read one of Rebecca Walker’s non fiction books (Baby Love) way back before I started blogging, so I had to see what all the hubbub was about.

ade

The main character and her best friend decide to take a few years to travel through Africa after graduating college. They galavant through Egypt for a while and eventually end up on a small island off the coast of Kenya. Love blossoms when our narrator meets a young wood carver named Adé.

Adé  and our narrator soon become an item, and get so serious that he decides she needs a culturally appropriate name. The narrator is thus dubbed “Farida.” It’s interesting to watch Farida’s attempts at assimilating into Adé’s culture. Though her Ivy League feminism remains in certain aspects of her life, Farida slowly begins to accept the more traditional aspects of life on the island. I was a little surprised at how readily she adapted to wearing traditional head scarves and robe-like coverings, but love has the ability to make us all do things we never thought we would. Heck, I never thought I’d have a case full of transformers in my basement, but there it is… (Grimlock is the coolest Dinobot, FYI.)

Adé and Farida’s love story is complicated by tradition, bureaucracy, political unrest, and malaria, but it is beautifully rendered. The prose is quite lovely. Unfortunately, having read Walker’s earlier non-fiction proved to be a detriment for me. I was thrown by this book because Farida’s life had SO MANY parallels to Walker’s. Farida is the biracial child of divorced parents who live on opposite coasts. Her white father is Jewish, her African American mother is a writer. I don’t necessarily have a problem with authors writing “what they know” so to speak, but this was awfully specific. I felt like Walker was describing her own life, which REALLY bothered me, because I kept trying to rectify this with details I already knew from Walker’s non fiction… Also, I kind of wanted to shake Farida, because I’m not sure any amount of love would entice me to stay on an island where you’re expected to do laundry using only three cups of water. (Unless, of course, I were drawn back in time and the love in question involved a dashing redheaded Scotsman…)

In all seriousness, this book is short and thought-provoking. Just because it didn’t ring all of my bells, doesn’t mean it wouldn’t work out well for you. If you’re in the mood for something a little heavier but don’t want to commit to a chunkster, this might be just the ticket.

Let’s talk about love an sacrifices… What have you done for love that you never thought you would? (It doesn’t have to be person love either. If you spoil the crap out of your dog, that counts too.)

*If you make a purchase of Adé through a link on this site, I will receive a small commission.*

Divider

Jan 02

Lost and Found by Chris Van Hakes

Chick Lit, Romance 16

Salutations Bookworms,

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.

lostandfound 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?

 

Divider