August brings about the start of back to school! While everyone heads off to their new normal, the books for this month conquer my favorite after school activities: telenovelas, book fandoms and laughing with my bestest friends!
You Had Me at Hola by Alexis Daria
Leading Ladies do not end up on tabloid covers.
After a messy public breakup, soap opera darling Jasmine Lin Rodriguez finds her face splashed across the tabloids. When she returns to her hometown of New York City to film the starring role in a bilingual romantic comedy for the number one streaming service in the country, Jasmine figures her new “Leading Lady Plan” should be easy enough to follow—until a casting shake-up pairs her with telenovela hunk Ashton Suárez.
Leading Ladies don’t need a man to be happy.
After his last telenovela character was killed off, Ashton is worried his career is dead as well. Joining this new cast as a last-minute addition will give him the chance to show off his acting chops to American audiences and ping the radar of Hollywood casting agents. To make it work, he’ll need to generate smoking-hot on-screen chemistry with Jasmine. Easier said than done, especially when a disastrous first impression smothers the embers of whatever sexual heat they might have had.
Leading Ladies do not rebound with their new costars.
With their careers on the line, Jasmine and Ashton agree to rehearse in private. But rehearsal leads to kissing, and kissing leads to a behind-the-scenes romance worthy of a soap opera. While their on-screen performance improves, the media spotlight on Jasmine soon threatens to destroy her new image and expose Ashton’s most closely guarded secret.
I was sold when I read the blurb and saw there was a telenovela background. I knew it would bring on the drama and the secrets, and it did! However, much like a telenovela the reader knew all the secrets and we were just waiting for it to all unfold. This is an indulgent romance between two people that are trying to keep the trajectory of their careers going. Another strong point for the book is the forthrightness between the two characters, they share their stories dealing with the stereotypes of the latinx community in Hollywood.
The Trouble with Quarterbacks by R.S. Grey
CANDACE: KAT & YASMINE! DO NOT DALLY! Come straight home after work. Kat, don’t take the long route from the subway station just so you can pass by Cute Hot Dog Guy. This is important!
I’ve had THE BEST DAY. You won’t believe it. There I was in my preschool classroom, washing a bit of poo out of some soggy trousers, when this absolute babe came to collect his nephew from my class.
Truthfully, I thought I’d blacked out for a moment when I first saw him. He was a proper hunk with glorious brown hair, quite tall, and he had these arms. Are muscly arms supposed to turn me on? I’m panting just thinking about them.
Anyway, he told me he’s a professional foosball player. At least, I think that’s what he said. The tots can get quite loud near pick-up time.
YASMINE: Foosball? What are you on about? Have you gone mad?
KAT: Oh sod off. So what if I like to have a good look at Hot Dog Guy’s arse on my trek home after a hard day’s work? It’s called self-care.
CANDACE: Kat, you’re hopeless. Yasmine, yes—foosball! I suppose it’s a big thing over here in the States? We must investigate and learn everything we can.
By the way, he’s called Logan.
Logan + Candace. I think that sounds quite nice! I can hear the wedding bells now. Dum dum da-dum.
YASMINE: Oh good grief. I suppose we can do some snooping when I get home. I’ll grab wine on my way.
KAT: I’ll grab hot dogs.
I don’t know about you but I am loving rom coms during these uncertain times. I need a good laugh and amazing banter and Grey always delivers. This was the perfect blend of sexy and adorable. Candace is a British teacher who has no idea what American football is. In walks Logan to her pre-k classroom, a famous quarterback to teach her all the ways. Not only is Logan oozing sexiness, he’s also nice! A nice, hot hero is always a must. Candace and her roommates also provide plenty of lol moments that made me wish i was right there with them.
Bookish and the Beast by Ashley Poston
Rosie Thorne is feeling stuck—on her college application essays, in her small town, and on that mysterious General Sond cosplayer she met at ExcelsiCon. Most of all, she’s stuck in her grief over her mother’s death. Her only solace was her late mother’s library of rare Starfield novels, but even that disappeared when they sold it to pay off hospital bills.
On the other hand, Vance Reigns has been Hollywood royalty for as long as he can remember—with all the privilege and scrutiny that entails. When a tabloid scandal catches up to him, he’s forced to hide out somewhere the paparazzi would never expect to find him: Small Town USA. At least there’s a library in the house. Too bad he doesn’t read.
When Rosie and Vance’s paths collide and a rare book is accidentally destroyed, Rosie finds herself working to repay the debt. And while most Starfield superfans would jump at the chance to work in close proximity to the Vance Reigns, Rosie has discovered something about Vance: he’s a jerk, and she can’t stand him. The feeling is mutual.
But as Vance and Rosie begrudgingly get to know each other, their careful masks come off—and they may just find that there’s more risk in shutting each other out than in opening their hearts.
A geeky retelling of Beauty and the Beast that starts at a con! While we’re all missing attending our favorite cons, this highlights the best parts. The meet ups, the panels, the discovery of new fandoms! A Beauty and the Beast retelling would be remiss to not mention my favorite fandom of all, books. Diving into the world of book fandoms was a fun way to bring this retelling to life. You’ll be able to catch many characters from the story here and Vance and Rosie are exactly how I expected. Following their journey was a delight.
What are you reading this month?