reading + entertainment banner

Love and Laughs for all


Who doesn’t love a wonderful romantic comedy? All the swoon-worthy romance wrapped up in a hilarious package! How do you make romantic comedies even better? By having everyone tell their sexy, sweet, funny stories in their own voices and from their own perspectives, of course. That’s why I’m absolutely loving the new trend of having diverse authors craft fiction for everyone to enjoy. With the latest crop of rom-coms, you’ll find authors creating characters that represent some underserved romance readers who want characters that they see themselves in and relate to. Personally, I’m delighted to share these awesome, amusing reads with you just in time for Valentine’s day. I bet you can’t read just one!

Daria, Alexis.
You had me at hola

Daria delivers a sexy showbiz love affair in this steamy rom-com. Soap opera actor Jasmine Lin Rodriguez has just won the title role in a hotly anticipated telenovela when she's dumped by her rock star boyfriend and her life is splashed across the tabloids. To get her life back on track in time for the first day of shooting, Jasmine and her cousins--aka the Primas of Power--devise the Leading Lady Plan, a list of dos and don'ts. But Jasmine's plan to stay single is upended when her TV love interest is recast with enigmatic heartthrob Ashton Suarez. A sense of Latinx culture and pride exudes from every page, elevating an already entertaining story. - Publisher's Weekly

Lozada, Evelyn.
The wrong Mr. Darcy

The authors loosely reimagine Pride and Prejudice as a sporty, multicultural romance with a surprising amount of edge. Hara Isari is determined to make it as a sportswriter. Derek Darcy, a professional basketball player in Boston, spent his rookie season sidelined after an injury. He's now ready to get back in the game when he hears a troubling secret about his best friend and teammate Charles Butler. When Hara wins a national writing award, the prize is an exclusive interview with media-shy Charles, who brings Derek along. Hara and Derek's first impressions of each other are just as disastrous as Austen fans will expect, but they grow closer as Hara attempts to dig out Charles's secret. This is sure to delight fans of sports romance. - Publisher's Weekly

Hall, Alexis J.
Boyfriend material

Hall breathes new life into the fake-dating trope with this effervescent queer rom-com. Luc O'Donnell, the hapless son of an aging British rock star, is tired of being a tabloid headline. Luc lets his friends set him up with Oliver Blackwood, a stuffy but sexy criminal barrister. Though their first date is a disaster, after Luc confesses his true motives, Oliver agrees to pose as his boyfriend at work events if Luc will return the favor at Oliver's parents' anniversary party. The writing is witty, and Luc and Oliver's chemistry is irresistible, but it's Hall's insights about trust and self-worth that set the story apart. This is a triumph. - Publisher's Weekly

Sosa, Mia.
The worst best man

Sosa imbues a soap operatic premise with weight and heart in this fantastically fun contemporary rom-com. Three years ago, Afro-Latina wedding planner Carolina Santos was left at the altar. Lina's white fiancé, Andrew Hartley, sent his brother and best man, Max, to deliver the awful news, and Lina has blamed him ever since. Now, Lina's up for a potentially life-altering job--but to get it, she'll have to work closely with Max. As Max and Lina work together, sweet, deeply apologetic Max wrestles with his attraction to his brother's ex-fiancée while learning to understand Lina in a way that Andrew never did. Romance fans are sure to be swept away by Sosa's empathetic characters as they make the most of a ridiculous situation. - Publisher's Weekly

Dev, Sonali.
Recipe for persuasion

Dev continues the story of the Raje family (after Pride, Prejudice, and Other Flavors) with this nuanced and powerful second chance romance, a loose riff on Jane Austen's Persuasion. Chef Ashna Raje fights to keep her late father's Palo Alto Indian restaurant afloat while locking horns with her mother. In a fit of defiance, Ashna signs on to a reality TV cooking show, hoping the publicity and prize money will fend off her financial woes. This decision places Ashna squarely in the path of Brazilian football sensation Rico Silva, the man whose heart Ashna shattered in high school and her new partner on Cooking with the Stars. Dev balances the toe-curling romance with high-octane family drama. Dev's candor and sensitivity in both story lines set this family-centric romance apart. Readers are sure to be impressed. - Publisher's Weekly

Hibbert, Talia.
Get a life, Chloe Brown

Chronically ill Chloe Brown's near-death experience is the catalyst for a thrilling, life-altering adventure that will keep readers riveted. Realizing life's too short for her to settle for her boring routine, she creates a list of ways to change her life-but discovers that she needs a little push to follow through. Enter her new building superintendent, Redford "Red" Morgan, a tough guy with a heart of gold and a hidden artistic talent. Chloe is a fantastic heroine with a refreshing voice; she's understandably prickly given all she goes through as a black, overweight, disabled woman, but that edge doesn't make her any less endearing to Red or the reader. She feels real and so do her struggles. A page-turning winner. - Publisher's Weekly

Patel, Sajni
The trouble with hating you

Patel's fast-paced romp of a debut offers a peek into the vibrant Indian-American community of Houston, Tex., introducing a self-assured heroine striving for independence from the traditional expectations of her family. Biochemical engineer Liya Thakkar is perfectly happy as a single woman. When her family tricks her into attending a matchmaking dinner, she embarrasses herself and her parents by fleeing-only to later discover her would-be suitor, Jay Shah, is the lawyer assigned to save her company from closing, and they'll have to see much more of each other. But the headstrong pair will both have to learn to be vulnerable before they can trust each other.  The enemies-to-lovers arc is classic, but the cultural specificity Patel brings makes this rom-com feel fun and fresh. - Publisher's Weekly

Lee, Jayci.
A sweet mess

Aubrey Choi has been content running her highly successful bakery Comfort Zone and with its first expansion taking up all of her time, dating has been the least of her priorities. Then a one-night-stand with gorgeous Korean hunk Landon Kim makes her want things she didn't think she had time for. Too bad it turns out he's a celebrity food critic whose scathing review of Comfort Zone goes viral and nearly destroys Aubrey's business. Landon tries to clean up the mess he made by offering Aubrey a spot on the new celebrity cooking show he's producing. Now Aubrey and Landon find themselves sharing a villa in California wine country, which is a guaranteed recipe for disaster...or is it? - Syndetics

Martin, Alexa.

In the second installment of the Playbook series, Martin (Intercepted) tells the witty, sexy, fun side of what happens when high school sweethearts try to rekindle a romance after living very different lives for 10 years. Single mom Poppy is a waitress at a club, trying to support her son, Ace. When NFL football star Trevor Kyle "TK" Moore shows up one night, Poppy is forced to face the last time she saw him and why she left.  As she adjusts to dating an NFL star, and TK adjusts to being a dad, Poppy's friends use wine, laughs, and sass to help her navigate fans, gossip blogs, and difficult football wives. When TK is faced with a decision that shapes his future in the NFL, it also decides their future together. Readers will laugh, swoon, and grow to love every character in this entertaining contemporary romance. - Publisher's Weekly

Harte, Marie.
The kissing game

"I bet you a kiss you can't resist me." Game on. Rena Jackson is ready. She's worked her tail off to open up her own hair salon. Rena's also a diehard romantic, and she's had her eye on Axel Heller for a while. He's got that tall-brooding-and-handsome thing going big-time. Problem is, he's got that buttoned-up Germanic ice man thing going as well. Rena's about ready to give up on Axel and find some other Mr. Right. At six foot six, Axel knows he intimidates most people. He's been crushing on the gorgeous waitress for months. But the muscled mechanic is no romantic, and his heart is buried so deep, he has no idea how to show Rena what he feels. He knows she's slipping away. So, he makes one crazy, desperate play... - Syndetics

Christopher, Andie J.
Not the girl you marry

Jack Nolan is a gentleman, a journalist, and unlucky in love. Fed up with his fluffy articles and the app-based dating scene as well, he strikes a deal with his boss to write a final piece de resistance: How to Lose a Girl. Easier said than done when the girl he meets is Hannah Mayfield, and he's not sure he wants her to dump him. Hannah is an extremely successful event planner who's focused on climbing the career ladder. She needs to show her boss that she has range, including planning dreaded, romantic weddings. Enter Jack. He's the perfect man to date for a couple weeks to prove to her boss that she's not scared of feelings. Before Jack and Hannah know it, their fake relationship starts to feel all too real. - Syndetics

DeLuca, Jen.
Well met

Emily knew there would be strings attached when she relocated to the small town of Willow Creek, Maryland, for the summer to help her sister recover from an accident, but who could anticipate getting roped into volunteering for the local Renaissance Faire alongside her teenaged niece? Or that the irritating and inscrutable schoolteacher in charge of the volunteers would be so annoying that she finds it impossible to stop thinking about him? - Syndetics

Wax, Wendy.
My ex-best friend's wedding

Prized and stored away for safekeeping, the timeless ivory wedding dress, with its scooped neck and cleverly fitted bodice, sits gently folded in its box, whispering of Happily Ever Afters. To Kendra, Brianna, and Lauren it's a reminder of what could have been, the promise of a fairy tale, and a friendship torn apart. But as Kendra knows firsthand: it wasn't the dress's fault. Once closer than sisters, Lauren and Bree have grown up and grown apart, allowing broken promises and unfulfilled dreams to destroy their friendship.  Now on the eve of her daughter Lauren's wedding, Kendra struggles with a secret she's kept for far too long. - Syndetics

Siskind, Kelly.
New Orleans rush

Beatrice Baker may be a struggling artist, but she believes all hardships have silver linings...until she follows her boyfriend to New Orleans and finds him with another woman. Instead of turning those lemons into lemonade, she drinks lemon drop martinis and keys the wrong man's car. Now she works for Huxley Marlow of the Marvelous Marlow Boys, getting shoved in boxes as an on-stage magician's assistant. Bea's been coerced into the role to cover her debt. She also maybe fantasizes about her boss's adept hands and what else they can do. She absolutely will not fall for him, or kiss him senseless. Until she does. The last time Beatrice trusted a man, her bank account got drained and she almost got arrested. Surely this can't end that badly...right? - Syndetics

Lauren, Christina.
Josh and Hazel's guide to not dating

In Lauren's hilarious standalone, hot mess Hazel Bradford and blueprint-perfect Josh Im are definitely, indisputably not dating. Hazel, extremely eccentric and lacking any filter, has more in common with the third graders she teaches than the exquisite genius Josh, a successful physical therapist. After a series of embarrassing encounters in college, Hazel is certain that she has proven to Josh that she's completely undatable, but, when they meet again seven years later, she hopes they can be friends. When it turns out Josh's girlfriend has been cheating on him, Hazel and Josh begin setting each other up on disastrous blind double-dates as an excuse to spend time together. Lauren finds the perfect balance between charming moments and sultry episodes. - Publisher's Weekly

Skilton, Sarah.
Fame adjacent

It's been more than 20 years since Holly Danner appeared on a wildly popular children's television show. Future success as an actress, writer, and even nanny eluded Holly; meanwhile, she's seen all her costars grow into award-winning megastars who only reconnect with her when they need a safe place to escape the paparazzi. Deeply insulted that she hasn't been invited to a televised reunion show in New York, she goes off the deep end monitoring her costars online and winds up in an internet addiction therapy clinic. There she meets handsome Thom Parker, a fellow patient who urges her to abandon her plan to crash the reunion show and, instead, find her own life. After graduating from the clinic, Thom and Holly open up to each other about their lives as Thom reluctantly helps Holly get to New York on a hijinks-filled road trip. - Publisher's Weekly

Bailey, Tessa.
Fix her up

In Port Jefferson, N.Y., children's birthday clown Georgie Castle reconnects with her lifelong crush, Travis Ford, a former star baseball player sidelined by an injury. His despair over the end of his career is fueled by lingering trauma from an unstable childhood. Meanwhile, Georgie, at age 23, is tired of being seen as the pesky little sister. As Georgie helps Travis out of his pit of misery and into a deeply supportive, protective, and giving relationship, he gets into construction work and makes his way back into the world. Seeing Georgie with new eyes, fuels his desire. Meanwhile, Georgie is inspired to seek a new look, expand her business, and bond with other women. Delightfully intense and creative sex scenes and potent emotions will reward both fans and new readers alike. - Publisher's Weekly

Lauren, Christina.
The unhoneymooners

This dazzling standalone contemporary from Lauren is a hilarious comedy of coincidences. Olive Torres is a notoriously unlucky woman, but her luck seems to change after her twin sister Amelia's wedding ends with almost everyone sick from food poisoning. The only ones who dodged it are Olive and Ethan Thomas, the brother of Amelia's new husband. Olive and Ethan can't stand each other, and when Amelia insists that the two of them enjoy the prebooked Hawaiian honeymoon, which would be wasted on the unwell newlyweds, Olive is sure this will be the worst vacation ever. Instead, she finds herself having fun and rethinking her enmity with Ethan, who slowly reveals himself to be a genuinely decent guy. - Publisher's Weekly

Davies, Kate
In at the deep end

"A fresh, funny, audacious debut novel about a Bridget Jones-like twenty-something who discovers that she may have simply been looking for love -- and, ahem, pleasure -- in all the wrong places (aka: from men)" Warning: contains hot lesbian sex! - Publisher

Guillory, Jasmine.
The wedding party

Maddie and Theo have two things in common: 1. Alexa is their best friend 2. They hate each other. After an "oops, we made a mistake" night together, neither one can stop thinking about the other. With Alexa's wedding rapidly approaching, Maddie and Theo both share bridal party responsibilities that require more interaction with each other than they're comfortable with. Underneath the sharp barbs they toss at each other is a simmering attraction that won't fade. It builds until they find themselves sneaking off together to release some tension when Alexa isn't looking, agreeing they would end it once the wedding is over. When it's suddenly pushed up and they only have a few months left of secret rendezvouses, they find themselves regretting that the end is near... - Syndetics