Review: The Road She Left Behind by Christine Nolfi

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Release date: June 11, 2019

Publisher: Lake Union

Genre: Women’s Fiction

Blurb:

Three women. Two families torn apart by secrets.

Crushed by guilt over the car accident that killed her father and sister, and torn apart by her mother’s resentment, Darcy Goodridge fled her family estate eight years ago and hasn’t looked back. Now an unexpected phone call threatens to upend what little serenity she’s found. Her nephew, Emerson, who was just a baby when his mother died, has gone missing. Darcy must return home and face her past in order to save him.

Once back in Ohio, Darcy realizes there’s more to Emerson’s disappearance—and to the sudden retirement of her mother, Rosalind—than meets the eye. As she works to make inroads with Rosalind, Darcy begins to unravel a decades-old secret that devastated her family and forced a wedge between her and Michael Varano, the man she left heartbroken when she vanished after the funeral. After carrying the scars of that fateful night for almost a decade, Darcy is determined to find closure, healing, and maybe even love where she lost them all in the first place—right back home where she belongs. 

Review:

Ahh family secrets always suck me right in and at its core this is about secrets and a family that is broken after an unspeakable tragedy. I also love when a character returns home after leaving in haste to deal with their past and Darcy heads home, unwillingly, but with her nephew missing she knows it’s finally time to face her past, as heartbreaking and emotional as that will be for her and the family she has left.

While I enjoyed Darcy as a character it was truly the supporting cast of characters that I adored. From Samson, the teenaged boy who is Darcy’s closet friend, to Emerson her precocious nephew all the way to Tippi her old boyfriends grandmother, they made up an eclectic and highly lovable group of individuals who added a whole lot of heart to an already heartfelt story.

There was a light mystery at play here that added some intrigue and the themes of family, loss, grief and forgiveness were powerful and totally captivating. This is my second book by the author and I’m now a firm fan, she has a beautiful way with words that touch the heart.

The Road She Left Behind in three words: Emotional, Compelling, and Memorable

Overall rating: 4/5

Thanks to the publisher for my review copy.

Review: This is Home by Lisa Duffy

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Release date: June 11, 2019

Publisher: Atria

Genre: Contemporary Fiction

Blurb:

Sixteen-year-old Libby Winters lives in Paradise, a seaside town north of Boston that rarely lives up to its name. After the death of her mother, she lives with her father, Bent, in the middle apartment of their triple decker home—Bent’s two sisters, Lucy and Desiree, live on the top floor. A former soldier turned policeman, Bent often works nights, leaving Libby under her aunts’ care. Shuffling back and forth between apartments—and the wildly different natures of her family—has Libby wishing for nothing more than a home of her very own.

Quinn Ellis is at a crossroads. When her husband John, who has served two tours in Iraq, goes missing back at home, suffering from PTSD he refuses to address, Quinn finds herself living in the first-floor apartment of the Winters house. Bent had served as her husband’s former platoon leader, a man John refers to as his brother, and despite Bent’s efforts to make her feel welcome, Quinn has yet to unpack a single box.

For Libby, the new tenant downstairs is an unwelcome guest, another body filling up her already crowded house. But soon enough, an unlikely friendship begins to blossom, when Libby and Quinn stretch and redefine their definition of family and home.

With gorgeous prose and a cast of characters that feel wholly real and lovably flawed, This Is Home is a nuanced and moving novel of finding where we belong. 

Review:

If you are looking for a beautifully written story with a ensemble cast of characters that are not only incredibly well drawn, but also wholly relatable, then look no further because This is Home was absolutely gorgeous! I’ve had The Salt House on my TBR forever and after reading this gem it won’t be lingering on my unread shelf much longer.

This is told via alternate perspectives, it flips between Libby and Quinn as Quinn moves into a new apartment where Libby lives with her family. Each woman had a strong, distinct and woefully raw voice, the type of realness that tugs on your heartstrings and also almost hurts to read about because it’s so heartbreakingly honest. Both are struggling with similar issues and find they have more in common than they first thought, they’re dealing with everything from abandonment issues to alcoholism, PTSD and just being a part of a military family in general and all of the issues that come with that. Add in an additional supporting cast of characters that are also genuine and basically leap from the page and you have magic.

Duffy shines light onto dark topics with a graceful and sensitive touch, she talks about highly important issues that should be discussed more in such a poetic and truthful way and I was captivated by the whole thing. I think anyone who has struggled in their life (and really, who hasn’t?!) can relate to this one in some way, it really is an amazing read and one that comes highly recommended by me. Would also be ideal for a book club pick, lots to unpack here and I think it would lead to some thoughtful discussions.

This is Home in three words: Raw, Beautiful and Heartfelt

Overall rating: 5/5

Thanks to the publisher for my review copy.

Review: The Rumor by Lesley Kara

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Release date: June 18, 2019

Publisher: Ballantine

Genre: Mystery/Thriller

Blurb:

Joanna is desperate to ingratiate herself with a popular clique of mothers at her son’s new school. But when she tries to impress them by repeating a rumor she overheard at the school gates, there’s no going back. . . .

Rumor has it that a notorious killer, a woman who has been released from prison years after her brutal crime, is living under a new identity in Joanna’s seaside town. So who is the supposedly reformed murderer now living in their neighborhood? Suspicion falls on everyone.

Joanna becomes obsessed with the case, pawing through decades-old records in an attempt to name the killer. But her curiosity not only ostracizes her from the community, but exposes her son and his father to a heartless psychopath who has killed–and may kill again. 

How dangerous can one rumor become? And how far will Joanna go to protect those she loves from harm, when she realizes what she’s unleashed?

Joanna is going to regret the day she ever said a word…. 

Review:

I loved the premise for this one, how seemingly innocent gossiping can turn out to be very harmful because I’m pretty sure every one of us is guilty of whispering with a friend on at least one occasion. The rumor itself is also both juicy and scary, imagine hearing there’s a killer living in your small town. Sure, the killer was only a child there self at the time of the murder, but still talk about creepy!

I kept thinking this is a really perfect summer thriller while I was reading and the main reason for my thoughts was because it was such a fast and compulsive read. I swear I flew through this one, it wasn’t even that it was super twisty or anything, I just think that the authors writing style kept me captivated and flipping the pages really quickly. There was also a great, strong sense of paranoia running throughout that added some additional tension.

Was this a fun and entertaining read for me? Sure, absolutely, but was it mind blowing and one I’ll remember in a few weeks? No, but it did hold my attention the entire time so I can’t be upset about that. I did figure out the main twist which is always a disappointment but it didn’t stop me from finishing it so clearly this had a compelling factor for me. I think those who are avid thriller readers will probably feel like I do but if you’re newer to the genre you may find it more mind blowing!

Overall rating: 3.5/5

Thanks to the publisher for my review copy.

Review: Summer of 69 by Elin Hilderbrand

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Release date: June 18, 2019

Publisher: Little Brown

Genre: Fiction, Historical Fiction

Blurb:

Welcome to the most tumultuous summer of the twentieth century! It’s 1969, and for the Levin family, the times they are a-changing. Every year the children have looked forward to spending the summer at their grandmother’s historic home in downtown Nantucket: but this year Blair, the oldest sister, is marooned in Boston, pregnant with twins and unable to travel. Middle sister Kirby, a nursing student, is caught up in the thrilling vortex of civil rights protests, a passion which takes her to Martha’s Vineyard with her best friend, Mary Jo Kopechne. Only son Tiger is an infantry soldier, recently deployed to Vietnam. Thirteen-year-old Jessie suddenly feels like an only child, marooned in the house with her out-of-touch grandmother who is hiding some secrets of her own. As the summer heats up, Teddy Kennedy sinks a car in Chappaquiddick, a man flies to the moon, and Jessie experiences some sinking and flying herself, as she grows into her own body and mind.

In her first “historical novel,” rich with the details of an era that shaped both a country and an island thirty miles out to sea, Elin Hilderbrand once again proves her title as queen of the summer novel.

Review:

It’s officially summer now that I’ve read the new EH book! Seriously, it truly doesn’t feel like summertime for me until I get my hands on her latest book and I did consider waiting to read this until my actual summer vacation, but who am I kidding, I have no willpower when it comes to her books. I’m so glad I didn’t make myself wait either because this was exactly the right book to get me into a summer vacation state of mind.

I was just a tiny bit apprehensive when I read the blurb of this and saw it was set back in 1969, I don’t mind historical fiction but I did wonder if this would have the same magic as her usual summer books. I trust the queen of the beach read though and figured she knew what she was doing and she does. Obviously she does, this was book twenty something after all, and I was just as into this one as all of her previous books. It was really cool to see a simpler kind of life actually, no cell phones, Instagram, etc that so dominates our daily lives now, but there was no shortage of drama back then either. So many of the rampant issues back then are still sadly relevant today too, racism, women’s rights issues, etc. that despite being set fifty years ago it still felt surprisingly relevant.

No one features an ensemble cast better than EH, she manages to create casts of characters that you feel invested in and also relate to on some level. There’s a little something for everyone here, mom Kate trying to cope with her only son Tiger, being shipped off to Vietnam, daughters Kirby, Blair and Jessie who range from early twenties to just turned teenager and so many supporting characters that give the whole thing vibrancy and life. A must read for summer, make sure you read the authors note for the inspiration behind the story, it was super cool!

Summer of 69 in three words: Breezy, Spirited and Delightful

Overall rating: 5/5

Thanks to the publisher for my review copy.

Review: The Honeymoon by Roma Halsall @bookouture @RonaHalsallAuth

Goodreads|Amazon

Release date: June 7, 2019

Publisher: Bookouture

Genre: Psychological Thriller

Blurb:

I’m your husband, Chloe. We’re a partnership now and we do what’s best for us as a couple.’ 

Chloe finally feels like she’s got her life together. After a difficult childhood and losing both parents, she worked hard for the life she loves in lively Brighton, helping people as a physiotherapist. And then she meets the perfect man.

It’s a whirlwind romance, but Dan is handsome, funny, and simply the kindest man she’s ever met. When she sees him standing by the altar, tears glistening in his eyes, she knows this will be for always.

As they sunbathe on their honeymoon island, laughing over drinks, planning their future with their feet in the sand, Dan jokes that he’d like them to stay there forever.

At first, Chloe couldn’t agree more. It’s tempting to imagine truly leaving her troubled past behind. But as the honeymoon goes on, he becomes increasingly adamant. They shouldn’t leave. In fact, he won’t let her…

Is he protecting her, as he claims? Or is it something more sinister? An utterly gripping psychological thriller for fans of Gillian Flynn, Clare Mackintosh, and The Wife Between Us.

Review:

Can we have a moment of silence in appreciation of that absolutely stunning cover?! Take me there! Actually, maybe not because Chloe’s dream honeymoon may not actually be as picturesque as that cover depicts. People often joke that they wish they could stay on their vacation indefinitely but what if you wanted to go home to your life and your new spouse wouldn’t allow you to leave? That’s exactly what happens to Chloe and is just the tip of the iceberg of what turns out to be a nightmare.

This was one of those books that had my full attention immediately, it was fast paced, things moved along almost as quickly as Chloe and Dan’s whirlwind engagement and marriage. Both Chloe and Dan hiding things from each other and I was desperate to know what their secrets were. There was a great sense of paranoia and doubt running throughout and I found this to be highly unpredictable, which is truly difficult to pull off lately. I was totally wrapped up in the story and read it in two sittings, I would’ve read it in just one but my family needed my attention. (How rude!)

Definitely recommended by me, it was a great read and full of surprises, the twists just kept coming and they were all well executed! Add this one to your summer TBR but maybe don’t read it if you yourself are involved in a whirlwind courtship 🤪

The Honeymoon in three words: Twisty, Quick and Tense

Overall rating: 4/5

Thanks to the publisher for my review copy.

Review: Fix Her Up by Tessa Bailey

Goodreads|Amazon

Release date: June 11, 2019

Publisher: Avon

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Blurb:

Georgette Castle’s family runs the best home renovation business in town, but she picked balloons instead of blueprints and they haven’t taken her seriously since. Frankly, she’s over it. Georgie loves planning children’s birthday parties and making people laugh, just not at her own expense. She’s determined to fix herself up into a Woman of the World… whatever that means.

Phase one: new framework for her business (a website from this decade, perhaps?)

Phase two: a gut-reno on her wardrobe (fyi, leggings are pants.)

Phase three: updates to her exterior (do people still wax?)

Phase four: put herself on the market (and stop crushing on Travis Ford!)

Living her best life means facing the truth: Georgie hasn’t been on a date since, well, ever. Nobody’s asking the town clown out for a night of hot sex, that’s for sure. Maybe if people think she’s having a steamy love affair, they’ll acknowledge she’s not just the “little sister” who paints faces for a living. And who better to help demolish that image than the resident sports star and tabloid favorite?

Travis Ford was major league baseball’s hottest rookie when an injury ended his career. Now he’s flipping houses to keep busy and trying to forget his glory days. But he can’t even cross the street without someone recapping his greatest hits. Or making a joke about his… bat. And then there’s Georgie, his best friend’s sister, who is not a kid anymore. When she proposes a wild scheme—that they pretend to date, to shock her family and help him land a new job—he agrees. What’s the harm? It’s not like it’s real. But the girl Travis used to tease is now a funny, full-of-life woman and there’s nothing fake about how much he wants her… 

Review:

You guys, thank God for romantic comedies because without them I think I may have given up on this whole book blogging thing as of late. I have been in such a picky reading mood lately and the only thing that’s been keeping me interested is romance so I’m just rolling with it. What’s even more exciting for me? That I’ve found new to me authors such as Tessa Bailey with other books for me to devour 🙌 It’s also the first book in a new series which just gives me yet another reason to be happy!

First things first, between the cover and blurb combo I was not expecting this to be as sexy as it was. I had heard from a couple of friends that it was super steamy and it totally was, like made me blush racy. Think lots of dirty talk and super detailed descriptions of sex acts. Just typing that out made me blush again 😂😳 I’m not usually a fan of descriptive sex scenes and I’m still really not that into them, but the plot itself was so damn cute that I didn’t really mind that much. You have an adorably quirky heroine who is a clown for crying out loud, that’s not one I’ve seen before. Then you have a hero who is a bad boy fallen baseball star with a caveman attitude that somehow is surprisingly hot?! I don’t know you guys but it just worked.

There was a bit of a weird discrepancy for me, Travis was beyond sweet and kind to Georgie most of the time and then there would be a switch to a sex scene where things got really down and dirty and it was a bit hard for me to make such a fast adjustment, but I think that’s just my picky, prude side shining through. Overall though I really liked this one, it was super fun and entertaining and just really cute. I’m really looking forward to the next book in the series and will be totally prepared for the sizzling heat next time!

Fix Her Up in three words: Cute, Sexy and Light

Overall rating: 4/5

Thanks to the publisher for my review copy.

Review: The First Mistake by Sandie Jones

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Release date: June 11, 2019

Publisher: Minotaur

Genre: Mystery/Thriller

Blurb:

THE WIFE: For Alice, life has never been better. With her second husband, she has a successful business, two children, and a beautiful house.

HER HUSBAND: Alice knows that life could have been different if her first husband had lived, but Nathan’s arrival into her life gave her back the happiness she craved.

HER BEST FRIEND: Through the ups and downs of life, from celebratory nights out to comforting each other through loss, Alice knows that with her best friend Beth by her side, they can survive anything together. So when Nathan starts acting strangely, Alice turns to Beth for help. But soon, Alice begins to wonder whether her trust has been misplaced . . .

The first mistake could be her last.

Review:

Last summer I devoured The Other Woman and loved so many things about it, it was a perfect summer thriller and had such a unique spin on the domestic suspense genre which is something that I always appreciate. While I still liked this one I’m not quite as excited about it as I had hoped to be but it was still a pretty entertaining read.

One of the things that made me love the authors last book so much was how addictive and binge worthy it was and there were shades of that here. It was a fast read for me, and while I was definitely interested in where things were headed, I wasn’t as compulsively gripped as I was the last time around. I think many seasoned thriller readers will probably figure out many of the twists in this one much like I did, but to be fair I didn’t totally guess one part. It was just missing something to elevate it to a must read status for me, I’m not sure exactly what the missing piece was for me honestly but something just didn’t quite work for me in the end.

I do realize that my expectations for this one were probably set way too high, they were honestly most likely unattainable, so make of that what you will. I think it’s been pretty well documented by now that I’ve been pretty unimpressed by thrillers for awhile now and it takes something truly special to get me excited lately. I think I’m getting jaded and this is why lately I’ve been very selective about which thrillers I choose to pick up, so keep that in mind. Super helpful stuff, I know this has been vague, but overall it was an entertaining read and one that I can definitely see being a popular choice this summer. If yours fan of the authors last book then you may enjoy this one more than me, lots of similarities in terms of style. And if you haven’t read TOW then that ones comes highly recommended by me!

Overall rating: 3/5

Thanks to the publisher for my review copy.

Review: Mrs. Everything by Jennifer Weiner

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Release date: June 11, 2019

Publisher: Atria

Genre: Contemporary Fiction

Blurb:

Do we change or does the world change us?

Jo and Bethie Kaufman were born into a world full of promise.

Growing up in 1950s Detroit, they live in a perfect “Dick and Jane” house, where their roles in the family are clearly defined. Jo is the tomboy, the bookish rebel with a passion to make the world more fair; Bethie is the pretty, feminine good girl, a would-be star who enjoys the power her beauty confers and dreams of a traditional life.

But the truth ends up looking different from what the girls imagined. Jo and Bethie survive traumas and tragedies. As their lives unfold against the background of free love and Vietnam, Woodstock and women’s lib, Bethie becomes an adventure-loving wild child who dives headlong into the counterculture and is up for anything (except settling down). Meanwhile, Jo becomes a proper young mother in Connecticut, a witness to the changing world instead of a participant. Neither woman inhabits the world she dreams of, nor has a life that feels authentic or brings her joy. Is it too late for the women to finally stake a claim on happily ever after?

In her most ambitious novel yet, Jennifer Weiner tells a story of two sisters who, with their different dreams and different paths, offer answers to the question: How should a woman be in the world?

Review:

Sometimes a book hits me so hard in my feelings and I love it SO much that I struggle putting said feelings into words that can properly convey my true thoughts and emotions. This is one of those kind of books, I both want to share all the minute details and gush about different quotes and stories that touched a part of my soul, but I also want any future readers to experience this incredible journey all on their own. When I struggle like this, I’m aware that the book must be one that’s truly special for me, I don’t have a hard time discussing a book that was just a standard read for me, or even one that I really didn’t like, but when one is as powerful as this one was for me, I find myself grasping for the right words because it becomes vitally important for me to do the author and the story justice.

This is a multigenerational tale told in alternating points of view, it begins in the 1950s and follows a young Jo and Bethie and I’m such a sucker for stories about sisters, so I was already invested from the start. It spans the years through 2016 and is on the longer side, so this really allowed the author to do a deep dive into the characterization and man, did she do a phenomenal job developing these two women. They truly felt like family to me by the end, there is nothing hidden in terms of the lives of these two, you follow them through all the highs and lows of their lives, the happy and sad, the ugly and the beautiful and there is absolutely no holding back. This really bonded me to them and made them the type of characters that I’ll never forget.

If you’re in a book club and searching for your next read, consider it done because this book will provide a group (especially a group of women) with countless hours of discussion. Following Jo and Bethie’s lives shows the constant struggle women both faced in the past and still face today, whether that’s in their home life and the decisions we make to either have children or not, to work or stay at home, to follow our dreams or to do what is expected of us, it is a constant struggle and as women, we all second guess our choices daily. In broader terms (I don’t want to spoil a thing) it explores sexuality, religion, racism, sexism, and so many more vitally important topics. In a nutshell, Mrs. Everything is everything, and yes it is ambitious as the blurb states, but it’s incredibly well written and hands down, the authors best book yet. And I have read them all!

If you can’t tell yet, this is highly recommended by me, but especially to every woman. Whether you’re a mom, grandma, daughter, sister, aunt, cousin, friend or none of those things I really thing everyone can relate to at least a piece of this one.

Mrs. Everything in three words: Powerful, Timely and Moving.

Overall rating: 5/5

Thanks to the publisher for my review copy.

Review: The Friend Who Lied by Rachel Amphlett @RachelAmphlett @botbspublicity #TheFriendWhoLied

Goodreads|Amazon

Release date: June 9, 2019

Genre: Psychological Thriller

Blurb:

What she doesn’t know might kill her…

Lisa Ashton receives a last-minute reprieve from death two weeks before her birthday. Regaining consciousness, she is horrified to learn one of her friends has been killed – and saved her life.

As she recovers, she uncovers a trail of carefully guarded reputations, disturbing rumours, and lies. Soon, Lisa begins to wonder if one of her friends is hiding a terrible secret. 

Because five of them entered the escape room that day, and only four got out alive. 

And someone is determined to cover their tracks before she can find out the truth.

Can Lisa find the killer before someone else dies?

Review:

Imagine needing a kidney transplant or you’ll die. Then imagine you find a donor just in the nick of time but that donor is actually a close friend and they pass away in order for you to live. Intense stuff and that’s exactly what happens to Lisa. Throw in a good old fashioned whodunnit and I’m hooked!

I love a locked room mystery and this had a clever twist as it takes place when a group of friends visits an escape room, which gave the whole thing a really modern vibe. Having a small pool of suspects sometimes makes it kinda easy to guess whodunnit but the author was very clever here and there was nothing easy about this one! This group of friends all have secrets and things they’re desperate to keep hidden so finding out the truth was not simple. It was a constant guessing game and one that really kept me on my toes.

This was a super fast paced and highly addicting read, I was desperate to find out not only who killed Simon but also what each person was hiding and read it very quickly in order to get to the truth. Multiple narrators that you don’t know if you can trust couple with an intriguing plot and sharp pacing make this one not to miss.

The Friend Who Lied in three words: Addictive, Fast and Tangled

Overall rating: 4/5

Thanks to the author for my review copy.

Review: Waiting for Tom Hanks by Kerry Winfrey

Amazon|Goodreads

Release date: June 11, 2019

Publisher: Berkley/Jove

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Blurb:

Can a romcom-obssessed romantic finally experience the meet-cute she always dreamed of or will reality never compare to fiction, in this charming debut adult novel from Kerry Winfrey.

Annie is twenty-seven years old, single, and obsessed with romantic comedies (she and her mother watched them religiously, before her mom died). Her dating life is limited by the expectations she’s formed from these movies. She is not as open to new experiences as she might be, because she’s waiting for her Tom Hanks–i.e., a guy she’ll find in the perfect, meet-cute romantic comedy way. When Annie does finally meet her perfect match, it’s not quite in the way she expected, and she’s forced to reckon with the walls she’s built around herself over the years. 

Before I share my thoughts on this one (spoiler alert, I LOVED it!) I have an excerpt to share with you guys!

Excerpt:

I blink a few times, staring straight into Drew Danforth’s face. It’s like when you’re a kid and there’s a solar eclipse, and all the teachers are like, “Don’t look directly into the sun! You’ll destroy your retinas!” but there’s always that one kid (Johnny Berger, in our class) who can’t stop staring.

In this situation, I’m Johnny Berger. And I guess Drew Danforth is the sun.

“Are you okay?” he asks again, enunciating his words even more as if me understanding him is the problem. His brown eyes, I notice, are flecked with tiny bits of gold, which is something you can’t see when you watch him on TV. His hair is just as voluminous as it seems in pictures, but in person, I have the almost overwhelming urge to touch it, to reach out and pull on that one lock of hair that hangs over his forehead.

“She’s not responding.” He turns to Chloe. “Is something wrong?”

“She’s French,” Chloe says without missing a beat. “She only speaks French.”

“I’m not French,” I say, breaking my silence. Chloe and Drew’s heads swivel to look at me.

“I’m sorry about your coat,” I whisper, then I run toward Nick’s.

Chloe bursts in the door behind me, the bell jingling in her wake. “I’m not French?” she screeches. “Those are the first words you spoke to Drew Danforth? Really?”

“Well then, why did you tell him I was French?” I shout, ignoring the curious stares of everyone working on their laptops and the calming melody of whatever Nick put on to replace the Doobies.

“I don’t know!” She throws her hands in the air. “You weren’t talking, so I thought I’d give you an interesting backstory!”

I put my hands over my face. “This is ridiculous.”

“No,” Chloe says, grabbing me by the shoulders. “This is your meet-cute, and now you need to go back out there and find him and say something that isn’t a negation of your Frenchness or an apology for destroying his probably very expensive coat.”

“Meet what?”

Nick stares at us from behind the counter, a dishtowel in his hand.

“A meet-cute,” Chloe stands up straight, shoulders back, as if she’s delivering a Romantic Comedy 101 lecture to Nick and his patrons, “is the quirky, adorable, cute way the hero and heroine of a romantic comedy meet.”

Everyone stares at her blankly.

“Or hero and hero. Or heroine and heroine. Not to be heteronormative,” she clarifies.

“Like how me and Martha met at her wedding,” Gary says.

Chloe thinks about it. “I don’t know that I would necessarily call that one a meet-cute, but sure, Gary.”

“Did you just make that up?” Nick asks, arms crossed.

I shake my head. “No. It’s a thing.”

“Watch a romantic comedy, dude,” Tobin says.

Nick rolls his eyes.

“Anyway,” Chloe continues, “Annie straight up ran into Drew Danforth and spilled a cup of coffee all over his coat, which is, like, the cutest of meets.”

“That doesn’t sound very cute,” Nick says skeptically, rubbing the scruff on his chin. “Was it still hot?”

“Scalding,” I say, sinking into my chair and resting my head on the table.

“Sounds like a meet painful,” says Gary, and a few people laugh.

“Thanks,” I mutter. “I’m so glad you all find my embarrassment entertaining.”

“Annie!” Chloe sits down across from me as a customer walks in and the rest of the shop stops paying attention to us. “This isn’t embarrassing. This is merely a story I’ll tell in my toast at your wedding to Drew.”

I lift my head to look at her. “I hate to break this to you, but I don’t think he’s my Tom Hanks. I think he’s just a famous guy with a possible third-degree burn on his chest. And now my first day on set is going to be super awkward because I accidentally assaulted the lead actor with a beverage.”

Chloe’s about to say something, but then a song starts and she closes her mouth, looking up toward the speakers. “I swear to God, I told Nick not to play any more Bon Iver. It makes people look up their exes on Instagram, not buy coffee. I’m gonna go put on some Hall and Oates.”

As she walks away, I rest my head on the table again. As if it wasn’t embarrassing enough to have my uncle get me a job on set, now I have to deal with this.

Review:

If that sneak peek alone wasn’t enough to convince you to add this one to your TBR I’m here to do my best to give you some more reasons why I think this a must read for romance fans! First and foremost it was just a really fun AND funny read, I don’t know about you but I find myself drawn to lighter and cuter reads in the summertime and this one surely fits the bill, an ideal vacation read for sure!

If you’re a fan of rom com movies, specifically older ones, there are some great references here as Annie is a huge fan of them. It really made me want to rewatch some of my old favorites, Sleepless in Seattle, You’ve Got Mail, etc and I got the same vibes reading this delightful book as I do while watching a beloved movie. Annie was super lovable and endearing, she had that whole quirky vibe going on and I always dig an imperfect heroine. At first glance Drew seems like the typical Hollywood charmer with not a lot going on upstairs but there’s definitely more to him than meets the eye and him and Annie suited each other perfectly.

As far as steam level goes, while there is sexual chemistry and tension this isn’t explicit and leaves everything up to the readers imagination. That’s a bonus for me, I like the cute and fun side of romance more than the sex and I know some readers prefer to know beforehand either way, so here’s your heads up! Overall this was just a really sweet read and one I totally recommend for romance fans.

Waiting for Tom Hanks in three words: Adorable, Entertaining and Funny

Overall rating: 5/5

Thanks to the publisher for my review copy.