Martin-Lugand’s sparse but emotionally forceful style, aided by Smith’s translation from the original French, catches the...

HAPPY PEOPLE READ AND DRINK COFFEE

After losing her husband and child in a car accident, the owner of a Parisian literary cafe moves to the Irish coast and falls in love with her neighbor in this uplifting travel fantasy.

Diane’s cottage in Mulranny is an idyllic backdrop for a romance to unfold over long walks on dramatic seaside cliffs or pints of Guinness in a cozy pub where the cheerful villagers all know each other by name. Noticeably missing from the picture is her love interest, Edward, who lives next door but who only appears every so often to yell at Diane to turn down her “damned music” or to ask her to watch his dog, Postman Pat, while he leaves town for several weeks. But their reticence is part of the story’s authenticity as well as its charm. Diane seems to get a cathartic release from turning her music back up and shouting in his face. They form a tentative friendship as Diane pulls herself together in other areas of her life—after her parents comment on her lack of independence, for example, Diane learns how to check her darkened cottage for a blown fuse. But Edward reveals his tender side when an old girlfriend appears on his doorstep. There’s a heart-rendingly awkward pause while they both decide how to proceed, knowing that both of their hearts might still belong to someone else and that Diane will eventually return to Paris—a cliffhanger ending for Edward that will be explored in the sequel. But like its heroine, the first book in the series doesn’t attempt to do too much, too soon.

Martin-Lugand’s sparse but emotionally forceful style, aided by Smith’s translation from the original French, catches the sweeter moments between two people embittered by loss.

Pub Date: May 10, 2016

ISBN: 978-1-60286-284-5

Page Count: 256

Publisher: Weinstein Books

Review Posted Online: Feb. 17, 2016

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 1, 2016

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With frank language and patient plotting, this gangly teen crush grows into a confident adult love affair.

LOVE AND OTHER WORDS

Eleven years ago, he broke her heart. But he doesn’t know why she never forgave him.

Toggling between past and present, two love stories unfold simultaneously. In the first, Macy Sorensen meets and falls in love with the boy next door, Elliot Petropoulos, in the closet of her dad’s vacation home, where they hide out to discuss their favorite books. In the second, Macy is working as a doctor and engaged to a single father, and she hasn’t spoken to Elliot since their breakup. But a chance encounter forces her to confront the truth: what happened to make Macy stop speaking to Elliot? Ultimately, they’re separated not by time or physical remoteness but by emotional distance—Elliot and Macy always kept their relationship casual because they went to different schools. And as a teen, Macy has more to worry about than which girl Elliot is taking to the prom. After losing her mother at a young age, Macy is navigating her teenage years without a female role model, relying on the time-stamped notes her mother left in her father’s care for guidance. In the present day, Macy’s father is dead as well. She throws herself into her work and rarely comes up for air, not even to plan her upcoming wedding. Since Macy is still living with her fiance while grappling with her feelings for Elliot, the flashbacks offer steamy moments, tender revelations, and sweetly awkward confessions while Macy makes peace with her past and decides her future.

With frank language and patient plotting, this gangly teen crush grows into a confident adult love affair.

Pub Date: April 10, 2018

ISBN: 978-1-5011-2801-1

Page Count: 416

Publisher: Gallery Books/Simon & Schuster

Review Posted Online: Jan. 23, 2018

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 1, 2018

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Heartfelt and funny, this enemies-to-lovers romance shows that the best things in life are all-inclusive and nontransferable...

THE UNHONEYMOONERS

An unlucky woman finally gets lucky in love on an all-expenses-paid trip to Hawaii.

From getting her hand stuck in a claw machine at age 6 to losing her job, Olive Torres has never felt that luck was on her side. But her fortune changes when she scores a free vacation after her identical twin sister and new brother-in-law get food poisoning at their wedding buffet and are too sick to go on their honeymoon. The only catch is that she’ll have to share the honeymoon suite with her least favorite person—Ethan Thomas, the brother of the groom. To make matters worse, Olive’s new boss and Ethan’s ex-girlfriend show up in Hawaii, forcing them both to pretend to be newlyweds so they don’t blow their cover, as their all-inclusive vacation package is nontransferable and in her sister’s name. Plus, Ethan really wants to save face in front of his ex. The story is told almost exclusively from Olive’s point of view, filtering all communication through her cynical lens until Ethan can win her over (and finally have his say in the epilogue). To get to the happily-ever-after, Ethan doesn’t have to prove to Olive that he can be a better man, only that he was never the jerk she thought he was—for instance, when she thought he was judging her for eating cheese curds, maybe he was actually thinking of asking her out. Blending witty banter with healthy adult communication, the fake newlyweds have real chemistry as they talk it out over snorkeling trips, couples massages, and a few too many tropical drinks to get to the truth—that they’re crazy about each other.

Heartfelt and funny, this enemies-to-lovers romance shows that the best things in life are all-inclusive and nontransferable as well as free.

Pub Date: May 14, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-5011-2803-5

Page Count: 416

Publisher: Gallery Books/Simon & Schuster

Review Posted Online: March 3, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 15, 2019

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