Romance

Cover of "Mickey Chambers Shakes It Up" by Charish Reid

Mickey Chambers Shakes It Up

By Charish Reid

Rated by Gregg W.
Nov 27, 2023

Hello and welcome to another edition of No Wait Wednesday, where we take a look at a title that's sitting on our New Release shelf just waiting on a lucky reader to check it out. (And the best part? Just like it says in the title: no waiting.) With the post-Thanksgiving season upon us and the days getting shorter and shorter, some of our patrons might need something bright, funny, and romantic to spice up those dark and chilly nights. Luckily, we have a delightful, charming, and refreshing romance novel in Mickey Chambers Shakes It Up by Charish Reid to do just that.

As the novel begins, Mickey

Cover of Charm City Rocks by Matthew Norman

Charm City Rocks

By Matthew Norman

Rated by Gregg W.
Oct 17, 2023

Hello and welcome to this week's edition of #NoWaitWednesday, where we take a look at a title from our adult New Release shelf that's just waiting for a lucky patron to discover it. Fantasy, science fiction, mystery, thriller, horror - we look at all kinds of books here at #NoWaitWednesday, however it's been a while since we've looked at romance in this space. It seems all of Kansas City is buzzing about the relationship between Travis Kelce of the Kansas City Chiefs and Taylor Swift, one of the biggest pop stars on the planet. Even though Kelce is a star in his own right, Swift is several

Three shelves of colorful books with a crescent moon seen between the books on the top shelf and a house on an island visible between the books on the bottom shelf.

The Wishing Game

By Meg Shaffer
Star Rating
★★★★

Rated by Michelle H
Aug 9, 2023

Part Willy Wonka, part The Westing Game, a little reverse Notting Hill and ALL heart! I loved this gentle charmer about Lucy, a kindergarten aide and Christopher, the lonely boy she wants to adopt if only their wishes could make it so. Hope springs eternal in the pages of the bestselling Clock Island kid's books that Lucy and Christopher read together. Some adult themes bring depth to the story but don't distract from the overall feeling of wonder. The ending won't be a surprise but you will race to get there, smiling all the way!

Pas de Don't by Chloe Angyal

Pas de Don't by Chloe Angyal

By Chloe Angyal

Rated by Gregg W.
Jul 25, 2023

If you're a regular reader of this space, you might know that we occasionally spotlight books on their release date. But there is often a delay between the time when a book gets published and the time it can be bought, shipped, cataloged, tagged, and delivered to the shelves of your local library. So today we're introducing #NoWaitWednesdays, where we take a look at a title on the shelves of the New Release section of one of our branches that is desperately waiting for you to check it out. We can't guarantee there will be no wait at all, of course, but if it's on the shelf when we publish our

Princess Aurore asleep under a tree

Beauty Sleep

By Cameron Dokey
Star Rating
★★★★

Rated by Anne G
Jun 26, 2023

So you know the basic idea of the fairy-tale and folklore-inspired fiction: Princess Aurore had a christening party which was interrupted by a slighted uninvited guest who casts a curse over the poor child. In the fantasy fiction curse when she turns 16 she will prick her finger and one drop of blood will fall and Aurore will die. Another guest utters a counterspell in the suspenseful tale, and the guest at least is not a fairy in this book.

Like in the traditional once upon a time, Aurore will not die, she will fall into a deep, deep sleep that will last 100 years until she is awakened by the

The left hand with a dragon's talon growing in place of the ring finger, the background showing a very muted face of a dragon staring at the reader

Dragon's Keep

By Janet Lee Carey
Star Rating
★★★★

Rated by Anne G
May 31, 2023

“The real dragon haunted my head and heart.”

What makes Dragon's Keep work for me is its approach: a medieval fantasy written more like historical fantasy than high fantasy.  Yet it has that sliver of magic and magical creatures (dragons, of course) to spice up the lyrical story.   In other words, the author avoids over-doing the chosen one approach, and instead creates very believable characters in a believable world.

I wasn't sure I would like this 12th century-esque story, but I was pleasantly surprised.  I would recommend this woman-of-steel protagonist for teen readers who aren't sure

Cover for Decision to Leave

Decision to Leave

By Park Chan-wook
Star Rating
★★★★★

Rated by Zachary C
Jan 9, 2023

A man is found dead at the base of a mountain peak.  Was it a suicide?  Could it be murder?  With the deceased's wife as the prime potential suspect, the investigator in charge of the case begins to tumble down a rabbit hole of obsession as he investigates her.  

The thing that makes Park Chan-wook's films so special, for me at least, is while other films employ dream sequences, or visions, or flashbacks, no other filmmaker uses them in a story without feeling a separation between real and unreal.  Using picture and sound, he somehow harnesses the subconscious in a visceral way.

Comparisons

Princess in a white dress holding a mask

Aurelia

By Osterlund, Anne
Star Rating
★★★★

Rated by Anne G
Oct 3, 2022

I can't believe I waited so long to read this teenage romance. This is a fantastic high fantasy about a teenage girl, but you can tell this is the author's debut book. I have confidence Osterlund will do wonderful things with the rest of this trilogy. I had a great time reading the fast-paced story. I want to see what she can do with the romantic tone when she has a little time under her belt.

I adore the character Aurelia. She is the type of woman of steel I always imagined a princess would be. Her blended family situation came across cleanly, with just a little violence.

I had a tough time

Back of a princess as she moves through the castle garden

Entwined

By Wallwork, Heather Dixon
Star Rating
★★★★

Rated by Anne G
Sep 6, 2022

Entwined is a fairy-tale inspired fiction of the story The Twelve Dancing Princesses. It's a suspenseful retelling. If I'm honest, the folktale that inspired this fantasy fiction was never been one of my favorites. This author manages to take a rather thin story and turn it into something interesting with a hero that is a strong woman of steel! This atmospheric version is my favorite retelling.

 

As an added bonus, the romantic tone does not bore you to death describing scenery. The castle is as luscious as the cover art, but unlike other versions, it is not the main character. This was not

Cover for Bright Star

Bright Star

By Jane Campion
Star Rating
★★★★★

Rated by Zachary C
Aug 12, 2022

Based on the romance between English poet, John Keats (played by Ben Whishaw), and Fanny Brawne (played by Abbie Cornish).  Keats, not considered a successful writer during his life (dying at only the age of 25), is not considered a suitable husband for a woman of Brawne's status.  Likewise, Keats' writing cohort (Paul Schneider), believes Keats needs to focus more on honing his craft than trivial flirtations.  Directed by the Academy's reigning Best Director, Jane Campion, this film was a delightful discovery that sprung out of exploring her catalog of work.  Campion's work is striking in how

Cover for Summertime

Summertime

By David Lean
Star Rating
★★★★★

Rated by Zachary C
Jul 12, 2022

I cannot convey the excitement felt seeing this film get added to the library collection as a result of a newly restored version of the film being released on DVD.  Summertime is such a beautiful film.  Director David Lean (Lawrence of Arabia, The Bridge on the River Kwai, Doctor Zhivago) turns the camera to the city of Venice.  The city itself is one of the main characters, and it is beautifully captured and displayed on screen.  American tourist, Jane Hudson (Katharine Hepburn), is finally taking her dream vacation to Venice.  Jane has not been lucky in love, but as she explores the city and

Cover of Love and Other Disisters by Anita Kelly

Love and Other Disasters

By Anita Kelly
Star Rating
★★★★

Rated by Gregg W.
Jan 18, 2022

Hello and welcome back to #NewTitleTuesday, where we take a sneak peek at an adult new release that hits the shelves today!

Contemporary romances are absolutely having their moment, especially those with a breezy, witty, compulsively readable - yet undeniably sexy - tone that leaves readers with a flush on their cheeks an smiles on their faces. Romcoms like Casey McQuiston's "Red, White, and Royal Blue," Emily Henry's "Beach Read," and Talia Hibbert's "Act Your Age, Eve Brown" have always have been in heavy demand on patrons' holds lists - not only by throngs of steady romance readers, but by

Cover of The Cafe By the Sea: shows scene of outdoor cafe seating in European village

The Café By the Sea

By Jenny Colgan

Rated by Emily D.
Oct 13, 2020

London based paralegal, Flora, has desperately pined over her American boss for years. He doesn’t know she exists. Flora has all but resigned herself to unrequited love, until one day he calls her into his office. But the love affair of her dreams doesn’t start there, instead she is sent on assignment to the island of her origins, Mure. The Scottish island is not somewhere she planned on returning, but maybe she’ll get a love affair after all.  

Continue Flora’s story along with her brothers and friends in Colgan’s sequel: The Endless Beach. The story just gets sweeter in this follow-up to Th

Batwoman's face

The Many Arms of Death

By Marguerite Bennett

Rated by Anne G
Aug 13, 2020

     Steve Epting's art in comics and graphic novels is fantastic.  Eptig is able to give Batwoman: The Many Arms of Death a classic feel with modern sensibilities, as he has with other superhero comics.  

     We are introduced to Kate (Batwoman) and her lost year where she spent time on an island full of degenerates, with her lover keeping the peace.  Now she returns while tracking down some arms dealers who are selling the biological weapon the monster man serum.  My biggest complaint is that we do not really get enough backstory to care about or know who some of these characters are that

The Two Lives of Lydia Bird

By Josie Silver

Rated by Library Staff (not verified)
May 18, 2020

For Lydia Bird, love can overcome anything, even death.  

When Lydia's fiance, Freddie Hunter, is tragically killed in a car accident she cannot imagine life moving on without him. Unable to sleep, her mum finds a doctor who is conducting trials on a new sleeping pill. This magical pink pill allows Lydia to fall asleep and jump back into her old life with Freddie. Her dream life with Freddie is continuing on without her.  

New things are happening to the couple and the people around them. Trying to juggle these two worlds is overwhelming and difficult at first. However, Lydia cannot resist

Love Her or Lose Her

By Tessa Bailey

Rated by Library Staff (not verified)
Mar 26, 2020

Rosie and Dominic Vega have always seemed the perfect couple. They both had dreams stemming from their childhood. Rosie's dreams were to own a restaurant and fulfill her Cuban legacy. Dom hoped to be half the man his own father was to his mother. However, after a tour to Afghanistan, Dominic returns and Rosie feels as if the man she knew never came back. While she is busy at her lackluster job as a perfume specialist, Dominic works hard in construction, secretly saving money for a dream he believes both he and Rosie share. However, their lack of communication makes Rosie feel as if their

Outlander, Season 1, Volume 2

By Sony Pictures Home Entertainment
Star Rating
★★★★★

Rated by Becky C.
Dec 2, 2019

When my friends started raving about the TV series, Outlander, I was more, meh. It sounds a bit outlandish, frankly. A twenty-something combat nurse from England finishes her tour of duty in Nazi-occupied France during World War II. On vacation in the Scottish Highlands with a husband she barely knows, after having been separated for five years during the war, she gets sucked back in time to the 18th century. Great. Another military conflict. Only this time, being English, she's on the side of the occupier in occupied lands. She eventually falls in love with a hunky (and educated, and

Getting to Happily Ever After with Novelist


Rated by Library Staff (not verified)
Aug 29, 2019

“I don’t mean to bother you,” the question usually begins, “but I’m looking for my next book, and I just don’t know what I want to read.” Honestly, that question is one of our favorites to get in days that are often filled with new card sign-ups and telling people where the restroom is.

The most challenging requests are usually from voracious readers because, well, they’ve read most of the usual culprits already. And while sometimes we magically have the perfect title stashed in our figurative back pocket for just such an occasion, even our magic runs out sometimes. For those situations, we

Romance Revival


Rated by Library Staff (not verified)
Aug 14, 2019

August is Read-a-Romance month. Do yourself a favor and check out what the genre has to offer and what it has been up to lately. I guarantee you will be pleasantly surprised.

The Romance genre has made a huge comeback, for me, recently. There are just so many great titles being released and I cannot resist their beautiful, colorful, happy covers. I took a break from reading romances because the love story lines and happily ever after endings got a little boring for me. I switched to dark mysteries, thrillers, and literary fiction for a long time. This past fall and spring so many titles that

An Extraordinary Union: A Novel of the Civil War

By Alyssa Cole
Star Rating
★★★★★

Rated by Karyn H
Dec 14, 2018

 

An Extraordinary Union is a historical romance set during the turbulent American Civil War. The heroine is spunky Elle Burns, a former slave with an eidetic memory who becomes a detective for the Union through the Loyal League, a society of freed and enslaved blacks with networks across the country to funnel intelligence to the North. Her latest assignment is to pose as a mute slave in Richmond, Virginia in the household of Confederate Senator Caffrey. The hero is Malcolm McCall, a Scottish born detective for Pinkerton, also assigned to gather intelligence from the Caffrey household, posing

The Wall of Winnipeg and Me

By Mariana Zapata
Star Rating
★★★★★

Rated by Shannon G
Oct 8, 2018

I've reread Mariana Zapata's The Wall of Winnipeg and Me more times than I could count and I've laughed out loud every single time. This quirky romantic comedy tells the story of Vanessa, the ex-assistant/housekeeper/fairy godmother to Aiden, the top defensive end of the National Football Organization. For the two years that Vanessa worked for the man known as "The Wall of Winnipeg," he lived and breathed football, leaving no room for common decency or polite human interaction with Vanessa. Now? Now, he’s asking for the unthinkable and she can’t believe she’s actually considering his offer.

Z

Our souls At Night

By Kent Haruf

Rated by Library Staff (not verified)
Aug 10, 2018

I just loved Our Souls at Night by Kent Haruf.

Set in a small town in Colorado during a current time period, this book kept me think about the situation that Addie Moore, a lonely widow, and Louis Waters, a widower have found themselves in. Being old and living alone can be very lonely.

What would I do if in my later years I became widowed and tried to have a relationship with a man my age?  Would my children try to direct my life? Role reversal between parent and children is a real problem when the parents don’t need to be parented.

But it's not all sad. It is also very happy when these

Hate to Want You

By Alisha Rai

Rated by Library Staff (not verified)
Jun 29, 2018

I think I would have come around to romance novels years earlier if I had only realized how much angst could precede the genre's requisite happy endings. Hate To Want You nailed both angst and satisfaction.

This steamy tale follows Livvy and Nicholas, once-lovers separated by family disapproval and time, who find that years of miscommunications and misunderstandings loom as large as ever . . . but so does the sizzling chemistry between them. I started out feeling somewhat lukewarm toward the characters but had heard enough praise of Alisha Rai's books to keep me going. I was a little afraid

The Light We Lost

By Santopolo, Jill

Rated by Library Staff (not verified)
Mar 19, 2018

Lucy Clark meets Gabe Samson in a Shakespeare class on September 11th. The pair spend the day together anxiously watching the news and later viewing the holes in the skyline where the Twin Towers once stood. This day shapes their lives. After a turbulent year apart, the couple reunites and begins dating. Their idyllic love is passionate, deep, and all consuming. But their careers pull them apart. Lucy wants to stay in New York working on a children's television show. Gabe wants his photography to show the world the Iraq War. The Light We Lost is Lucy and Gabe's love story and the story of life

The Light We Lost

By Santopolo, Jill

Rated by Library Staff (not verified)
Mar 11, 2018

Lucy Clark meets Gabe Samson in a Shakespeare class on September 11th. The pair spend the day together anxiously watching the news and later viewing the holes in the skyline where the Twin Towers once stood. This day shapes their lives. After a turbulent year apart, the couple reunites and begins dating. Their idyllic love is passionate, deep, and all consuming. But their careers pull them apart. Lucy wants to stay in New York working on a children's television show. Gabe wants his photography to show the world the Iraq War. The Light We Lost is Lucy and Gabe's love story and the story of life

Song to Song (DVD)

By Terrence Malick
Star Rating
★★★★

Rated by Zachary C
Dec 12, 2017

The term "visual poem" gets thrown around a lot when describing Terrence Malick's most recent work, starting with 2011's Tree of Life. Even before then his films relied heavily on visuals to help tell the story, but his work increasingly favors beautiful imagery and strives towards creating feelings and moods more so than a continuous narrative thread. Thus, dialogue is intermittent and often jumps around. I can certainly see why this might not appeal to people. That being said, Song to Song is my favorite of Terrence Malick's recent "visual poems," and my favorite film of his since 2005's The

Heroes Are My Weakness (Audiobook)

By Susan Elizabeth Phillips

Rated by Library Staff (not verified)
Oct 15, 2017

I put off reading Heroes Are My Weakness for a long time. Susan Elizabeth Phillips is one of my favorite authors, and for years her contemporaries were the only time I ventured outside of historical romances, but this gothic-inspired standalone got lackluster reviews when it first came out and many fans lamented its darker tone compared to her usual zany, fun style. Once I started it in preparation for listening to her next book, though, I found the same spirit of ridonkulous humor, addictive storytelling, and endearing characters that I love about all her books.

Annie Hewitt is a down-on-her

Because I'm Watching

By Christina Dodd
Star Rating
★★★

Rated by Traci M.
Oct 7, 2017

Jacob Denisov sits alone in his darkened home, waiting for death. Torture at the hands of North Koreans has left him with little will to survive. Surprisingly, death does not come when a car crashes into his house, landing just inches from Jacob. For Maddie Hewitson, driving into a house is just the latest episode of odd behavior she has experienced since coming to Virtue Falls, Washington. For Maddie and Jacob, this first meeting is the spark that will allow them both to heal and discover new life and love together.

Because I’m Watching seventh in the Virtue Falls series of romantic suspense

Table 19 (DVD)

By Jeffrey Blitz
Star Rating
★★★

Rated by Traci M.
Sep 7, 2017

Why must movie trailers be so misleading? There have been many a movie where the finished product seems completely different from what the trailer hyped it to be. Like a comedy that is not that funny because the trailer gave away the only two humorous parts of the entire film.

After viewing the trailer of Table 19, I popped in the DVD expecting a romantic comedy. A girl meets a guy while at the wedding of her ex-boyfriend’s sister. She’s seated at the worst table but it’s filled with quirky characters who have laugh out loud hijinks. That’s not the movie I got.

Anna Kendrick’s Eloise has

Circling the Sun

By Paula McLain

Rated by Jed D.
Aug 30, 2017

Let’s get this out of the way first: while Circling the Sun is about Beryl Markham, famed aviator of the 1920’s, there are barely two chapters about her adventures as a pilot. What happens between the passages about flying is a compelling historical novel about a young English girl who is abandoned by her mother in Kenya and who eventually wins respect in the male-dominated worlds of horse training and aviation. 

The Spring Hill book discussion group found the love triangle exhausting, but Markham's escapades in the Kenyan bush involving lions, elephants, and colonial politics make it a