[Note from Frolic: Today, we welcome author Amy Pine to the site. If you need a laugh, she has you covered! Take it away, Amy!]
We all need a little humor in our lives, and when that humor is paired with romance? Even better! They’re two of my favorite ingredients when crafting a story. No matter how serious or poignant any of my stories might be (don’t worry…I rarely get uber serious), it’s important for me to always throw in a dash of humor to balance the heavy with a dose of light.
The same goes for my reading tastes. I can handle just about anything if a story offers me a laugh here and there. That’s not to say that all stories should have humor because there is definitely a time and a place for it, and not all story subjects lend themselves to such a time and place, but as for my reading life, I tend to seek out both love and levity in between the pages of a book.
So, I guess it’s your lucky day since I’m here to share five books that offer both. And because my new release, THE BLOOM GIRLS, is a mother/daughter story with a dollop of romance and more than a sprinkling of humor, my pics range from YA to adult. Bonus? All authors are Jewish, and all books contain Jewish rep—just like THE BLOOM GIRLS! So pull up a beach chair, and grab your next romance and humor-filled read!
The Ex-Talk by Rachel Lynn Solomon
I’m going to date myself here, but the second I read the blurb for The Ex Talk, it gave me big He Said, She Said vibes, an early 90s movie starring Elizabeth Perkins and Kevin Bacon where the two are rival journalists who get their own point-counterpoint talk show where they argue, fall in love, break up and make up on air. It’s funny and romantic and I so wanted The Ex-Talk to live up to my memory of his beloved movie, and let me say that it definitely did. I’ve grown along with technology, and instead of watching morning talk shows, I now listen to my share of podcasts. The Ex-Talk is for anyone who loves podcasts or NPR but with a dose of enemies-to-lovers romance, which is exactly what we get with Shay Goldstein and her know-it-all Ex-Talk cohost, Dominic Yun, as the two pretend to be exes for the sake of the show—and then, of course, fall in love. Solomon’s writing is a great mix of humor and heart.
The Distance From A to Z by Natalie Blitt
This YA romcom about a baseball hating girl and baseball loving guy has all the makings of a perfect romcom. Plus we get travel, speaking in French, and funny secondary characters. As a Chicago native, I love our heroine Abby’s Cubs obsessed family and her need to put them in her rearview mirror—if only for the summer—on a French immersion program in New Hampshire. Now, I don’t by any means loathe baseball, but I’m not what you’d call an avid sports fan of any sort, so I felt for Abby being the odd one out in her die-hard Cubs fan family, and I understood why she’d shy away from a guy who—no matter how charming—seems to be a hugs sports fan himself. Although a few curveballs fly their way (see what I did there), the heart wants what the heart wants, and Abby and Zeke want each other.
Last Summer at the Golden Hotel by Elyssa Friedland
Technically this book is more multi-generational fiction with a sprinkling of romance, but it’s funny and poignant and billed as Dirty Dancing meets The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel—which is spot on, by the way—and I’m a huge fan of each. Take a dated and failing Catskills resort, a developer who wants to buy it and turn it into a casino, and the Goldman and Weingold families who run it—all three generations—convening for the first time in a decade to vote on what to do. Friedland gives us poignancy, humor, romance, scandal, and just about everything you’re looking for in your next summer read.
Today Tonight Tomorrow by Rachel Lynn Solomon
Yep, it’s another Rachel Lynn Solomon, but this one is YA. This one packs together two of my favorite tropes—enemies to lovers and forced proximity—and throws in the ticking clock as our rivals, Rowan Roth and Neil McNair have to pair up for Howl, a senior class end-of-year game that lasts all night where—even if they outsmart the classmates who are out to beat the unbeatable duo—when it comes down to winning Howl, only one can be the victor. I adored this wild ride of a romance that shows two “enemies” who’ve known each other for years that maybe they don’t truly know each other at all.
The Matzah Ball by Jean Meltzer
I’m cheating a bit here because this book isn’t out until late September, but it is high up on my need-to-read list. The heroine, Rachel, is a Jewish girl with a dark secret—she’s a super successful Christmas romance novelist. But her publisher wants more Jewish rep in their romance books and enlists Rachel in writing a Hanukkah romance which—for research purposes—pairs her up with her longstanding summer camp nemesis, Jacob Green. This has all the makings of a great rom-com, and I cannot wait to read it!
About the Author:
A librarian for teens by day and a writer by night, Amy Pine can’t seem to escape the world of fiction, and she wouldn’t have it any other way. When she finds that twenty-fifth hour in the day, she might indulge in a tiny bit of TV to nourish her undying love of vampires, superheroes, and a certain high-functioning sociopath detective. She hails from the far-off galaxy of the Chicago suburbs. Her book, The Bloom Girls, hits shelves and eReaders on August 3.
The Bloom Girls by Amy Pine, out now!
Gabi Bloom doesn’t believe in signs. She believes in photographic evidence, the view through her camera lens, and the snap of the shutter. It’s why she traveled to Europe—to satisfy her wanderlust and to kick off her photography career. But in Ireland, all of that changed when Gabi gazed into the impossibly blue eyes of an American bartender. She wasn’t prepared for their intense and immediate attraction, or the fact that she’d be bringing Ethan home with her . . . as her fiancé.
Gabi’s upcoming marriage is the cherry on top of her mother’s current predicament. Stumbling toward forty, Alissa is a pastry chef who raised her daughter single-handedly while Gabi’s father traveled the globe. Now her baby girl is getting married after a whirlwind romance and Alissa—well, Alissa is pregnant. Again. And not only is her ex the father, he wants her back. For good. Until she can figure out that part of the puzzle, Alissa is hiding her big little secret even as she helps Gabi plan a happily-ever-after wedding. But somewhere between disaster and hope, life might just bloom in a way that is breathtakingly unexpected . . .