Book Description: A man who’s been moving his whole life finally finds a reason to stay put.
Charlie Matheson has spent his life taking care of things. When his parents died two days before his eighteenth birthday, he took care of his younger brother, even though that meant putting his own dreams on hold. He took care of his father’s hardware store, building it into something known several towns over. He took care of the cat he found in the woods…so now he has a cat.
When a stranger with epic tattoos and a glare to match starts coming into Matheson’s Hardware, buying things seemingly at random and lugging them off in a car so beat-up Charlie feels bad for it, his instinct is to help. When the man comes in for the fifth time in a week, Charlie can’t resist intervening.
Rye Janssen has spent his life breaking things. Promises. His parents’ hearts. Leases. He isn’t used to people wanting to put things back together—not the crumbling house he just inherited, not his future and certainly not him. But the longer he stays in Garnet Run, the more he can see himself belonging there. And the more time he spends with Charlie, the more he can see himself falling asleep in Charlie’s arms…and waking up in them.
Is this what it feels like to have a home—and someone to share it with?
Book Description: Billy Daley hasn’t been home in years, and he likes it that way. He’s just fine on his own—he has a cash-in-hand job at a scrapyard, a half-feral cat to keep him company, and many miles between him, his hometown and all the baggage that comes with it.
Until the job goes sideways. Suddenly he’s back in Rushmere, working for none other than his brother’s best friend—a man whose kiss Billy can’t seem to forget.
Gus Amour’s memories of Billy Daley are all spiky edges, lips crushed against lips and a reckless streak that always ended in trouble. But when Billy needs a place to stay, Gus steps in. He’d do anything for the Daley family, including living, and working, side by side with a man who makes his heart beat too fast and his blood run too hot—two things he’s been running from for years.
It doesn’t take long before their easy banter, lingering touches and heated glances become a temptation too hard to resist. But falling into bed and falling in love are two different things, and love has never come easy to either Billy or Gus. Only when fate threatens to steal away their opportunity for a second chance will they realize they don’t need easy.
Books that take place at a boarding school are my favorite, so needless to say, I was very excited about the opportunity to read All Girls.
As the prestigious Atwater School prepares to welcome its students back for a new school year, they encounter an unexpected surprise: signboards along the local roads, except instead of presenting a jovial message like the Burma Shave ads of almost a century ago, they announce that the school is harboring a rapist.
Naturally, this sends shockwaves through the entire Atwater community. Rather than presenting one girl’s experience at school like Sittenfeld’s Prep, this book presents a cohesive narrative of the school year through the eyes of a series of girls. While the scandal—a student from 25 years ago has accused an unnamed male faculty member of coercing her into a sexual relationship when she was a senior—is always in the background, the main themes are much more about American girlhood than this particular scandal. The students are from different cultural and socio-economic backgrounds; they also have different interests, presenting the breadth of the student body at a place like Atwater.
After graduating from high school a year early, Marty moves to London. He’s a talented oboe player, but he’s not going to the conservatory like he planned, but his parents don’t exactly know that. He’s supposed to be going to church every Sunday, but he’s not doing that either. Marty came out to his parents last year, but it didn’t go very well. Still, they’ve allowed him to go to London, and Marty’s determined to make the most of it.
Marty is always looking for places to showcase his musical talent; there isn’t a lot of demand for an oboe player, but the opportunities he finds prove to be rewarding. He’s also coming to terms with being out. Back home, he’s only out to his parents and his two best friends, but in London, he can be fully out, and that means that he can find a boyfriend.
Annika Dev is the founder of Make Up, a dating app to help couples with relationship problems. She’s horrified to find out that her company is going to be in the same building as Break Up, an app that helps people end relationships. Ani had a summer fling with Hudson Craft—Break Up’s founder—and she’s pretty sure that he stole the idea for his app from her. Needless to say, she’s less than thrilled to see him again, especially since he’s so different from the man she met over the summer.
And of course, all of a sudden, Hudson is *everywhere* and Ani can’t avoid him. Not only does she run into him at the office, but she also finds him at her yoga class and at the same restaurant—the man is practically omnipresent, but not in a creepy way.
New Hope, PA is a special town with a strong LGBTQ+ community. It is the perfect place for Prescott to open his antique store and for Danny to open his vintage toy store.
Unbeknownst to them, their mutual friend has purposefully rented the same store to these two men, intending for each to have half of the space.
Naturally, this simply will not do: Prescott thinks Danny is a slob and Danny thinks Prescott is a snob. Both men believe that sharing the store will be disastrous for their respective businesses, but they have no choice. They’re going to have to work together if they want to succeed.
Anya is married to Zac, a rock star, and while marriage and a baby have led them to a more sedate lifestyle than what once knew, they have brought a third person into their relationship many times. These have always been one-time encounters, and that’s fine with Anya and Zac. After all, they weren’t looking for anything deeper than that.
But then Anya realizes that she’s attracted to Cal, Zac’s best friend and bandmate, and neither Anya nor Zac knows how to process these feelings. Cal doesn’t know about the open relationship, and furthermore, if the feelings aren’t reciprocated—or even if they are and things take a bad turn—the aftermath could do permanent damage to Zac and Cal’s two decades of friendship.
Book Description: Some people search their whole lives to find love. He just wants to avoid it.
Teddy Spenser spends his days selling design ideas to higher-ups, living or dying on each new pitch. Stodgy engineer types like Romeo Blue, his nemesis—if you can call someone who barely talks to you a nemesis—are a necessary evil. A cute necessary evil.
Working together is bad enough, but when their boss puts them both on a new high-stakes project, “working together” suddenly means:
sitting uncomfortably close on the same plane,
staying in the same hotel room—with only one bed—and
spending every waking minute together.
Turns out Mr. Starched Shirt has some hidden depths, and it’s getting harder to ignore the spark Teddy feels with every brush of their hands, with every knowing look. He might not have been looking for this connection with Romeo, but will he ever be ready to let him go?
Chloe is a high school senior living in Los Angeles. Her mother starred in two popular television shows as well as Hallmark movies. Her mother also engaged in an elaborate scheme of cheating and bribery in order to help Chloe get into college.
The narrative alternates between Then and Now, exploring the dual perspectives of the events that preceded Chloe’s mother’s arrest as well as what she and her family do after being implicated in the scandal.