August has some fun and new to me authors on tap in the Seasoned Romance category. The debate over the cut off age for “seasoned” or “mature” main characters rages on, but I’m willing to go early 30s to make sure everyone gets a good read! As a woman closing in on fifty, it’s hard to imagine a 30-something as “seasoned,” but I guess that’s a reality we all have to confront! Welcome to the club, you whippersnappers!
Indicates the books that I have read and recommend.
Playing House by Ruby Lang
Playing House is the first book in Lang’s new Uptown series. It’s actually more of a short novella than a full-length book. Playing House tells the story of two Chinese-American, urban planners in NYC. They both find themselves in less than desirable places in their personal lives; one is divorced, the other unemployed. This is what I refer to as a fast, low impact read. The characters are remarkably well developed for such a short novella, and the conflict is minimal and low on angst. I enjoyed the growing emotions their fake relationship fostered upon them, and learning a bit about the architectural history of NYC is always a bonus!
Lang’s writing style is clean and very easy to read. Playing House was my first book by her, and it won’t be my last. My only hope is that subsequent books in this series are a little longer, and the conflict a little meatier. This is an excellent introduction to what looks like a fun new series. Playing House is out now.
Fed Up by Kathleen Duhamel
Kathleen Duhamel is a new to me author and Fed Up is the first book in her Well-Seasoned Love series. I am a giant sucker for foodie books and our heroine, Shelby, is a personal chef! Fed Up gives us incredible food imagery and will make you hunger for more! Shelby is dealing with a tragic loss when she takes the job as famous actor, Ian James’ chef.
Duhamel manages to weave several of my catnip items into this story; food, clever dialog, and music – it’s truly a feast for all of your romantic senses. Fed Up gives us two broken souls trying to figure out the next chapters in their lives. I enjoyed this read very much, and I look forward to more from this series and this author. Fed Up is out now.
Not So Wrong by Renee Regent
Not So Wrong is the second book in Regent’s The Love Grows series. This series is described as “[S]trong, protective heroes. Feisty, independent heroines. When they meet, Love Grows in unexpected ways.” Again, we have a music theme in the book. Melanie Parker is a singer/songwriter giving her dreams of music one last shot. Her co-writer, billionaire Spencer Colebank can’t seem to walk away from Melanie or their shared passion for music, even though his family has other expectations for him. Not So Wrong is scheduled to release on August 27th.
Publish or Perish by Kerry Blaisdell
Publish or Perish delves into a world I have never read about, the cutthroat world of biomedical research! Reeling from an ugly break up with her scientist husband, Emma O’Manny makes some questionable decisions that leave her holding the “suspect number one spot” when her estranged ex ends up dead. Our hero is Detective Vin Bronislovas. He has a history of falling for the suspect, so trusting his judgment is a significant issue for himself and his boss. Solving the mystery of the dead ex could not only save his potential love interest, but also the lives of millions of children waiting on the vaccine our dead scientist was working on. Who knew biomedical research could be so mysterious? Publish or Perish is out now.