Happy Trail

A few years ago, romance author Penny Reid “opened up her Universe to allow several different authors to publish stories set there, either new stories about characters readers are already familiar with, or brand new characters.”  These books are being published under the Smartypants Romance publishing house and have allowed fans of Reid’s (like me!) to enjoy a wide range of stories.  “Happy Trails” is the first book in the Park Ranger series and was a fun, quirky addition to the Green Valley Universe Reid created.  You don’t have to be familiar with any of Reid’s books to enjoy this one but if you are, I think you will like seeing some familiar characters pop up for a scene or two.

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Party of Two

It has gotten to the point where Jasmine Guillory can do no wrong in my eyes.  Her books aren’t the most original romances out there but they are always charming and fun and the stories are delightful. This book is no different.  I will pick up any book she writes based on her track record and I cannot wait for her next release.

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The Wangs vs. the World

I clearly missed something with this book because I found nothing funny about this “hilarious” and “outrageously funny” novel.  In fact, if I didn’t have to read this for a book club I was hosting, I would have stopped at around 15%.  But I soldiered on.  And in the end, while I didn’t hate this book as much as I thought I would, I didn’t particularly like it and found myself confused by all the great ratings.

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With the Fire on High

If you’re looking for a feel good story with very little drama and a heroine you root for, “With the Fire on High” is the book for you.  I read this for a book club I’m in and was happy to find that most people loved this book as much as I did. Elizabeth Acevdeo is an amazing author and I want to read everything she has done.  While this book is marketed as a young adult title, I would recommend this to any adult.

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Such a Fun Age

If there was ever a fiction book that needed to be read during a specific time in history, this is the book.  “Such a Fun Age” is topical in ways I don’t think Kiley Reid could have ever predicted.  At a time when white people feel it’s not only their duty but their right to call the police on black folks just trying to live their life, this book takes a look at the ripple effect these acts have on the people involved.  What I appreciate most about this book is Reid’s desire to highlight a real world problem while also telling a compelling and funny story.

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If I Never Met You

Fake dating, a common romance novel trope, is one of my favorites.  I love the (usually) slow burn of two people realizing they have legitimate feelings for each other while pretending to be in love.  Until the last quarter of this book, it was going to be a solid 4 stars but some last minute plot points took me out of the story.  A solid romance that I wished was a bit more cohesive.

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