Category: romance

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Red, White and Royal Blue by Casey McQuiston R…

Title: Red, White and Royal Blue

Author: Casey McQuiston

Age Group: Adult

Genre: Romance

Series: Standalone

Star Rating: 5 out of 5 Stars

               I
borrowed this book from my local library and reviewed it.

               I’ve
been going through a lot of personal stuff right now, and so, I’ve been craving
romances and stories with happy endings. I don’t normally read romance, but with
this book, that has since changed. I was reminded of just how much I love the
genre. Red, White, and Royal Blue has become one of my favorite books of 2019;
it was a romance that was nuanced, hilarious, sexy, and tender, all at once. I
loved it; Casey McQuiston is a shining new talent in fiction. This modern, gay
fairy tale swept me off of my feet and stole my heart within the first chapter.
I was rooting for Alex and Henry through the whole thing, and I finished this
afternoon. I haven’t been able to stop smiling. This book was as delicious and
satisfying as a home-cooked meal, and I loved every moment of it. I’m glad I
started my journey into the romance genre with this excellently written book.
Enemies to lovers is one of my favorite romance tropes, and this book showcases
it fantastically.

               Red,
White and Royal Blue starts in the way that many romances do: two smart, sexy
main characters, a rivalry, and explosive, engaging chemistry. Alex-Claremont
Diaz is the First Son of the United States, the only son of Madam President and
her senator ex-husband, and he hates Prince Henry of Wales, who he thinks is
snobby, rude, and prudish. When an international incident occurs due to their mutual
dislike, the two young men are forced to feign friendship. But sparks fly as
they begin to understand each other, but it’s not exactly up to them to make
the decision. Will our two knuckleheads find love, in spite of the forces
rising against them?

               This
book was such a treat! I was immediately engaged in the story, the pacing was
nice, and the pages practically crackled with energy and chemistry. I loved McQuiston’s
writing style, wry and funny and totally unique. The premise certainly wouldn’t
happen in real life, but it’s not formulaic or unoriginal. I loved every
escapist moment of it. The characters were so great I was constantly laughing
or swooning! I adored Alex and Henry, as well as the characters around them:
Zahra, Cash, June, Nora, and their respective parents. This book was a real
breath of fresh air, and I’m very sad that I don’t have this book in my
collection. The love story was what really got me though; that was my favorite
part. Watching two people fall in love is such a magical, happy thing, and Casey
McQuiston knocked this element out of the park. I’m so very happy with this
book; I came away from it happy, diverted from my worries, if only for a little
while. And isn’t that all we can ask from anything we read, but especially
fiction? The bottom line: Sexy, sweet, and funny, I loved Red, White and Royal
Blue! Easily one of my favorite books of 2019! Next on deck: City of Girls by Elizabeth
Gilbert!

https://literatureobsessed.blogspot.com/2019/06/red-white-and-royal-blue-by-casey.html

The Boy Next Story by Tiffany Schmidt Review

Title: Bookish Boyfriends: The Boy Next Story

Author: Tiffany Schmidt

Age Group: Teen/Young Adult

Genre: Contemporary Fiction/Romance

Series: Bookish Boyfriends, book two

Star Rating: 4 out of 5 Stars

               I
borrowed this book from my local library and reviewed it.

               A Date with
Darcy, the first book in the Bookish Boyfriends series, was one of my favorite
books of last year, so when I found The Boy Next Story sitting on a shelf in
the new book section, I took it home. It’s been sitting on the top of my stack,
and as soon as I finished Save Me the Plums, I dove in. This installment in the
series, The Boy Next Story, focuses on the youngest Campbell sister, Aurora,
Rory for short. Shy, artistic, and overshadowed by her older, more vivacious sisters,
she is harboring a desperate and unrequited crush on their next-door neighbor, Toby
May, who just so happens to have a crush on her sister Merri. Her grades are
slipping, and she’s totally not gelling with the assigned English book, The
Great Gatsby. She is assigned Little Women soon after by Ms. Gregoire. When she
is put in an advanced art class and starts exploring her talents, she finds
that there’s competition there, too. When a once in a life time arises, Aurora
must decide if she will let her fear rule her, or if she will gain the courage
to live her life as she pleases.

               I
really enjoyed this book, quite possibly even more than A Date with Darcy. One
of my favorite things about this hilarious, sweet series is how it focuses on
the Campbell family as a unit and each of the sisters individually. I loved how
shy, quiet, artistic Rory got the spotlight this time, and I really related to
her. I was captivated by her sweet, slightly insecure voice, and the pacing was
great. I adored her, honestly, for all her flaws: prickly, shy, snarky and
sarcastic, but artistic, kind, and gentle also. I loved reading about her
struggles: with math, the place in her own family, her identity and her
unrequited crush on Toby. The chemistry between the two of them was explosive,
full of sparks and barbs and so much passion that at times, I was screaming, giggling,
and tearing my hair out. This book made me feel a lot of things. Rory’s
character development from the baby sister unhappy with life to a young woman
unafraid to go after everything she wants, unapologetically. All of the other
characters provided great foils to her, and I loved the way they all played a
role in helping Rory find her courage. I adored the ending. At times, Rory
seemed a bit whiny, but it wasn’t a huge deterrent. I loved her, and the whole
Campbell family, and I’m hoping to the book gods that there’s another book in
store! I have so many questions! The bottom line: Warm, hilarious, romantic and
heartfelt, I loved The Boy Next Story! I hope that there’s more in store for
the Campbell clan! Next on deck: Again but Better by Christine Riccio!

https://literatureobsessed.blogspot.com/2019/06/the-boy-next-story-by-tiffany-schmidt.html

Love a la Mode by Stephanie Kate Storhm Review

Title: Love a la Mode

Author: Stephanie Kate Strohm

Age Group: Teen/Young Adult

Genre: Contemporary Fiction/Romance

Series: Standalone

Star Rating: 5 out of 5 Stars

               I borrowed this book from my local library and reviewed it.

               When I found out that our book club pick for June was Love a la Mode, I was ecstatic! I’d already ordered a copy through my interlibrary loan system, and I was excited for the excuse to push it to the top of my stack. I was hopeful for The Flame and the Candle, but it wasn’t working for me. Plus, things have been crazy for me in my personal life, and I needed a break from all the dark stuff I’ve been feeling and experiencing. I figured this would fit the bill, and I was right. Romantic, mouthwatering, hilarious and as sweet and light as any pastry made in Paris, I loved Love a la Mode, and I’m beginning to have a new appreciation for the romance genre in general. It really is the perfect antidote when real life is bogging you down.

Henry Yi and Rosie Radeke are two teens that both love food, and they are both on their way to Paris to study at one of the best cooking schools in the world. And they just so happen to fall in love on the airplane ride over. But alas, lovely Paris isn’t all delicious food: Rosie begins to wonder if she can really cook after all, and Henry longs to run his own restaurant, just like his father, despite his mother insisting he go to college. Hilarity, hijinks, and adorable love scenes ensue, complete with misunderstandings and kisses straight out of a romcom! Honestly, I really loved it. Before I’d read Love a La Mode, I’d forgotten just how therapeutic this genre can be. I’ve been dealing with a lot of heavy stuff, and I’m finding that I’m gravitating toward happier things instead of dark ones. The pacing was breakneck, I was crying laughing throughout the book; this book is a real gem! I loved all of the characters, and their distinctive personalities. And the descriptions of the food! Oh, my goodness, I was so hungry as I was reading this book! It was all so vivid I felt as though I could taste the food. I loved the rollercoaster that was Henry and Rosie’s relationship. Love a la Mode was a great reprieve from the stresses of life, and I very much enjoyed it. It was a great example of the YA romance genre. The bottom line: Bubbly, sweet, romantic and hilarious, I loved Love a la Mode! Next on deck: Girl Gone Viral by Arvin Ahmadi!

https://literatureobsessed.blogspot.com/2019/06/love-la-mode-by-stephanie-kate-strohm.html

Somewhere Only We Know by Maurene Goo Review

Title: Somewhere Only We Know

Author: Maurene Goo

Age Group: Teen/Young Adult

Genre: Contemporary Fiction/Romance

Series: Standalone

Star Rating: 5 out of 5 Stars

               I borrowed this book from my local library and reviewed it.

               Maurene Goo has long been on my TBR stack, since her first book came out. Unfortunately, I had to return both of her books to the library before I could read them. I’ve had Somewhere Only We Know in my library stack for a while, and once I realized that it had a hold on it, I pushed it to the top of my stack as soon as I was finished with Girls with Sharp Sticks. Romantic, hilarious, tender and thoughtful, this book melted my heart and then broke it, then put it back together again. It was like one of the best Korean romcoms, but in literary form. It turned out to be the perfect antidote to my emotional heaviness. It made me laugh, cry, giggle, and shriek. It reminded me of how much I love contemporary fiction. Maurene Goo has penned one of my favorite books of 2019, and I will never forget Lucky and Jack!

               What do you get when you combine a runaway Asian-American KPop star and a discontent expat living in Hong Kong? A recipe for hilarity, accidental romance, and more than a few hijinks. Lucky is the most sought-after KPop star in Asia, and despite her glowing success and the fulfillment of her dreams, something feels off. It doesn’t feel fun anymore. Discontent and hungry for an American-style burger, she wanders out of her hotel room and runs into Jack, who is taking a gap year from college and struggling to find his way and pay his bills. This chance meeting leads to all kinds of hijinks, and the two teens team up to have a dream day in Hong Kong. Will this meeting become just a memory, faded but remember fondly? Or will it lead to, dare I say it, love?

               This book; it was such a cute reminder of why I love contemporary fiction, and romance. Somewhere Only We Know was pure magic. I was immediately captivated by Lucky and Jack’s voices; they were each so distinct and unique. The pacing was breakneck; I devoured this book in half a day. It was charming, hilarious, heartwarming and tender. It was so thoughtful and well-written. I loved Jack and Lucky, and their wacky, spontaneous trip through Hong Kong. I loved that most of the characters were Asian or Asian-American; diverse books for the win, always! One of my favorite parts of the book was how Jack and Lucky were explored as people; Lucky with her career, and Jack with his indecision about his own path after high school. I laughed, I screamed, I cried, I cheered. This book was like getting a long, warm hug from a friend, or sitting under a blanket and warming up after a long day. After Girls with Sharp Sticks, it was the perfect antidote, and I will be looking into the rest of Goo’s body of work because I’m totally addicted now. I loved how this chance meeting, straight out of a rom-com, turned into true love. Somewhere Only We Know is a musical, sweet, funny romance that had me laughing, crying, and cheering; Maurene Goo has earned a special place in my heart with her third novel. (Plus, I love how each of her books are also the names of song titles! Score!) I loved every moment, and I will never forget it. Realistic, sweet, funny and thoughtful, I loved Somewhere Only We Know! Highly recommended for all ages! The bottom line: I will be screaming about this book from the rooftops; Maurene Goo has outdone herself completely with her latest novel. Full of humor, heart, joy, and love, I adored Somewhere Only We Know, and Lucky and Jack have become one of my favorite YA couples! Absolutely outstanding. Next on deck: Honor Bound by Rachel Caine and Ann Aguirre!

https://literatureobsessed.blogspot.com/2019/05/somewhere-only-we-know-by-maurene-goo.html

(WP) Daisy in the Sky with Diamonds

(WP) Daisy in the Sky with Diamonds

               Her dream had always been to fly. To climb higher than the clouds, to shatter the Earth’s atmosphere. To go where no one had dared before, past even the stars.

               What answers awaited her up there?

               Daisy was so absorbed in her own thoughts, her eyes on the sky, that she crashed into someone on the sidewalk and end up falling, her butt meeting the rough concrete painfully.

               She lay down on the sidewalk, breathing hard through the pain.

               Why, oh why, couldn’t she just watch where she was going?

               “Oh! I’m so sorry!”

               A deep male voice sounded through the fog of her pain. She’d definitely have a bruise in the morning from this collision.

               “I didn’t see you there! Are you all right?”

               When the fog cleared, she blinked up at the unfortunate person who had run into her. With her head in the clouds, she hadn’t at all been paying attention to where she was walking. Daisy felt a pink flush beginning to climb, from her chest to her neck.

               “I’m fine!” She said, starting to stand up. Before she realized what was happening, there was a warm hand wrapped around her forearm, helping her to stand up straight.

               “It was my fault,” She added, laughing shyly. “I didn’t see where I was going. I’m so sorry.”

               Now that she was standing, she could see his face.

               He was so handsome that it should have been made a crime. Or he should’ve come with a warning label. He had skin that was kissed by the sun; the tan lines around his eyes and on his shoulders told Daisy he spent a lot of time outdoors. His face was covered in freckles, and his eyes were a brown so dark they reminded Daisy of black coffee.

               “How rude of me,” She said, feeling her blush grow from her neck to her cheeks. “I bumped into you and I didn’t even introduce myself!”

               She held out a hand, smiling. “I’m Daisy. Daisy DeLuca.”

               Her new companion smiled, and she decided she liked the way his eyes crinkled at the corners when he did so.

               “I’m Seth. I’m happy to meet you! Although I wish it had been on better circumstances.” He laughed, putting a hand behind his neck and rubbing it in a self-conscious manner.

               “It’s wonderful to meet you, Seth. Would you please allow me to buy you a coffee? It’s the least I can do after crashing into you like that.”

               “I’d like that, Daisy. And you can tell me what you see in the sky that looks so interesting.”

               **

               “And that’s how your mother and I met,” Seth said at the dinner table one night, telling the story to their two children, Lily and Rose.

               Seth had insisted on naming their girls after flowers, in tribute to their mother.

               Daisy smiled at her husband, blushing warmly as she remembered their first meeting. Of all ways to meet the love of your life!

               She had received so much in her life. First Seth, and then the sky.

               She couldn’t ask the universe for anything more.

               **  

(WP) Daisy in the Sky with Diamonds

(WP) Daisy in the Sky with Diamonds

               Her dream had always been to fly. To climb higher than the clouds, to shatter the Earth’s atmosphere. To go where no one had dared before, past even the stars.

               What answers awaited her up there?

               Daisy was so absorbed in her own thoughts, her eyes on the sky, that she crashed into someone on the sidewalk and end up falling, her butt meeting the rough concrete painfully.

               She lay down on the sidewalk, breathing hard through the pain.

               Why, oh why, couldn’t she just watch where she was going?

               “Oh! I’m so sorry!”

               A deep male voice sounded through the fog of her pain. She’d definitely have a bruise in the morning from this collision.

               “I didn’t see you there! Are you all right?”

               When the fog cleared, she blinked up at the unfortunate person who had run into her. With her head in the clouds, she hadn’t at all been paying attention to where she was walking. Daisy felt a pink flush beginning to climb, from her chest to her neck.

               “I’m fine!” She said, starting to stand up. Before she realized what was happening, there was a warm hand wrapped around her forearm, helping her to stand up straight.

               “It was my fault,” She added, laughing shyly. “I didn’t see where I was going. I’m so sorry.”

               Now that she was standing, she could see his face.

               He was so handsome that it should have been made a crime. Or he should’ve come with a warning label. He had skin that was kissed by the sun; the tan lines around his eyes and on his shoulders told Daisy he spent a lot of time outdoors. His face was covered in freckles, and his eyes were a brown so dark they reminded Daisy of black coffee.

               “How rude of me,” She said, feeling her blush grow from her neck to her cheeks. “I bumped into you and I didn’t even introduce myself!”

               She held out a hand, smiling. “I’m Daisy. Daisy DeLuca.”

               Her new companion smiled, and she decided she liked the way his eyes crinkled at the corners when he did so.

               “I’m Seth. I’m happy to meet you! Although I wish it had been on better circumstances.” He laughed, putting a hand behind his neck and rubbing it in a self-conscious manner.

               “It’s wonderful to meet you, Seth. Would you please allow me to buy you a coffee? It’s the least I can do after crashing into you like that.”

               “I’d like that, Daisy. And you can tell me what you see in the sky that looks so interesting.”

               **

               “And that’s how your mother and I met,” Seth said at the dinner table one night, telling the story to their two children, Lily and Rose.

               Seth had insisted on naming their girls after flowers, in tribute to their mother.

               Daisy smiled at her husband, blushing warmly as she remembered their first meeting. Of all ways to meet the love of your life!

               She had received so much in her life. First Seth, and then the sky.

               She couldn’t ask the universe for anything more.

               **  

Love and Luck by Jenna Evans Welch Review

Title: Love and Luck

Author: Jenna Evans Welch

Age Group: Teen/Young Adult

Series: Standalone

Star Rating: 3 out of 5 Stars

               I borrowed this book from my local library and reviewed it.

               Love and Luck was the Match pick for one of the book clubs I attend, Young Adult for Adults. I was very excited when I heard: I’d loved Welch’s debut novel, Love and Gelato. Love and Luck picks up where that left off, with Lina’s best friend, Addison, now in the spotlight. Unfortunately, I didn’t like it nearly as much as I enjoyed Love and Gelato. There were a lot of inconsistencies that I wish had been addressed in the book. Regardless, it was a light, enjoyable read, and I felt it was a really good pick for March!

               Addison is visiting Ireland for her aunt’s ostentatious, ridiculous destination wedding. She’s counting down the days until she can get to Italy and finally see her best friend, Lina. Never mind that she’s running from a dangerous, embarrassing secret, or that her family is always in her business. Or that her very future is at stake, or that her brother and closest friend, Ian, hates her now. When she finds an old guidebook in her hotel, she begins to wonder if her heartache will end. But things quickly go wrong when Ian tries to ditch her for an unknown, charming Irish stranger named Rowan. Soon drawn into a reluctant cross-country trip across Ireland, Addie begins to discover that despite all the heartache in her life, she’s pretty lucky as well, and a fresh start may be awaiting her once she returns home to the States.

      I liked this book, but it wasn’t nearly as good as Love and Gelato. There were a lot of inconsistences that bothered me. Addie’s family wasn’t very well fleshed out; I found a lot of it lacking and I was left with a lot of questions about them. I was also left wondering about Addie’s relationship with Lina; there were a lot of loose ends that I felt really needed to be addressed. The big buildup to the life-changing event for Addie kind of felt like a letdown; I was expecting something more, or worse? Regardless, I really enjoyed it. I loved the voice of the author of the guidebook at the beginning of each chapter; it made the pacing and transitioning really smooth and easy to follow. The lush, green setting of Ireland stole my heart and had me wishing for a long vacation. I liked Addie, fierce and funny and loving, and I also enjoyed her brother Ian, the perfect foil for her. Quiet, brooding, and secretive, I really liked him, and his weird, quirky sense of humor. But the person who really stole my heart in this book was Rowan. I really liked him. He was sweet, funny, and charming, with a hurting side that he kept hidden very well. I also very much enjoyed the ending. This book was a good attempt, but I was hoping for the magic and spirit of Love and Gelato. I liked it, but it wasn’t spectacular. The bottom line: Though I didn’t like Love and Luck as much as Love and Gelato, I really liked it nonetheless. Next on deck: Superman: Dawnbreaker by Matt de la Pena!

https://literatureobsessed.blogspot.com/2019/04/love-and-luck-by-jenna-evans-welch.html

Love and Luck by Jenna Evans Welch Review

Title: Love and Luck

Author: Jenna Evans Welch

Age Group: Teen/Young Adult

Series: Standalone

Star Rating: 3 out of 5 Stars

               I borrowed this book from my local library and reviewed it.

               Love and Luck was the Match pick for one of the book clubs I attend, Young Adult for Adults. I was very excited when I heard: I’d loved Welch’s debut novel, Love and Gelato. Love and Luck picks up where that left off, with Lina’s best friend, Addison, now in the spotlight. Unfortunately, I didn’t like it nearly as much as I enjoyed Love and Gelato. There were a lot of inconsistencies that I wish had been addressed in the book. Regardless, it was a light, enjoyable read, and I felt it was a really good pick for March!

               Addison is visiting Ireland for her aunt’s ostentatious, ridiculous destination wedding. She’s counting down the days until she can get to Italy and finally see her best friend, Lina. Never mind that she’s running from a dangerous, embarrassing secret, or that her family is always in her business. Or that her very future is at stake, or that her brother and closest friend, Ian, hates her now. When she finds an old guidebook in her hotel, she begins to wonder if her heartache will end. But things quickly go wrong when Ian tries to ditch her for an unknown, charming Irish stranger named Rowan. Soon drawn into a reluctant cross-country trip across Ireland, Addie begins to discover that despite all the heartache in her life, she’s pretty lucky as well, and a fresh start may be awaiting her once she returns home to the States.

      I liked this book, but it wasn’t nearly as good as Love and Gelato. There were a lot of inconsistences that bothered me. Addie’s family wasn’t very well fleshed out; I found a lot of it lacking and I was left with a lot of questions about them. I was also left wondering about Addie’s relationship with Lina; there were a lot of loose ends that I felt really needed to be addressed. The big buildup to the life-changing event for Addie kind of felt like a letdown; I was expecting something more, or worse? Regardless, I really enjoyed it. I loved the voice of the author of the guidebook at the beginning of each chapter; it made the pacing and transitioning really smooth and easy to follow. The lush, green setting of Ireland stole my heart and had me wishing for a long vacation. I liked Addie, fierce and funny and loving, and I also enjoyed her brother Ian, the perfect foil for her. Quiet, brooding, and secretive, I really liked him, and his weird, quirky sense of humor. But the person who really stole my heart in this book was Rowan. I really liked him. He was sweet, funny, and charming, with a hurting side that he kept hidden very well. I also very much enjoyed the ending. This book was a good attempt, but I was hoping for the magic and spirit of Love and Gelato. I liked it, but it wasn’t spectacular. The bottom line: Though I didn’t like Love and Luck as much as Love and Gelato, I really liked it nonetheless. Next on deck: Superman: Dawnbreaker by Matt de la Pena!

https://literatureobsessed.blogspot.com/2019/04/love-and-luck-by-jenna-evans-welch.html

(WP) Meet Cute: Overdue Books Edition

(WP) Meet Cute: Overdue Books Edition

               (Happy
Valentine’s Day, all! I hope you enjoy!)

The day started with being late:
Liz had slept through her alarm, leaving her no time for a shower. She stopped
at a drive-through for an iced coffee, finger-combing her hair as she waited.

               She
found herself wishing that she’d had the day off today, but she wasn’t that
lucky.

               There
was so much to do after work: errands, laundry, house-cleaning.

               The day
had only just begun and she was already stressed out beyond belief.

               She
took a sip of coffee and set it in the cupholder. Something in the backseat
caught her eye: a bag of library books that were a few days overdue already.
She’d have to stop on her way home.

               Pulling
into work with two minutes to spare, she grabbed her coffee and bag and headed
inside at a brisk clip.

               Liz
worked at one of the country’s top literary magazines as a writer, and she
loved it. Getting paid to write? It wasn’t much better than that.

               The
office was already buzzing, and she waved quickly, walking to her office.

Shoving her hair up into a messy
bun and holding it in place with a pencil, she sat at her computer, eager to
get started.

**

The day went by in quick dollops:
an hour here, fifteen minutes there. She was so busy she didn’t have any time
to watch the clock. When three thirty hit, she clocked out, already making a
note to stop for another coffee.

She had no plans to stop moving;
she would treat herself to a nice dinner and maybe a glass or two of wine. Without
thinking, she was grinning to herself. Today might have started on a rough
note, but it didn’t have to end that way.

She’d never minded being by herself;
she liked being around people, but she was just as content being alone.

She got in the car and began to
drive, making a mental list of all the things she had to do. Laundry, cleaning
the house, balancing her checkbook and paying the bills.

If she hadn’t stopped for another
caffeine fix, she would’ve forgotten about the library books in the backseat.

She put her new coffee in the
cupholder and drove to the library, which was on the other side of town. It was
a stately stone building, with three stories and ivy on its face; it reminded
Liz of a woman’s long tresses.

It felt like home, like safety.

If she wasn’t already so busy, she
would’ve lingered. But perhaps she could later in the week.

She grabbed the heavy bag of books
and put it on her shoulder, locking the car and striding into the library.

She was so absorbed in her own
thoughts that she collided with a broad back, hard, and she and the poor person
she bumped into crashed to the carpet.

“Oh, my God! I’m so sorry!” Liz
spluttered, feeling her cheeks heat. Normally, she was alert to her
surroundings, but she’d just been so distracted and flustered today. “I should’ve
watched where I was going!”

The person she’d knocked over was a
man, with a golden-red goatee and glasses. He was wearing an olive-colored Henley
and dark jeans. He was blushing as well.

“It’s okay!” He said, and much to
Liz’s relief, he was grinning. He’d been holding a pile of books, and they were
scattered on the floor; Liz’s own bag had been dropped and several books had
spilled out. “I shouldn’t have been standing right here, in front of the doors.
Way to cause a traffic jam!” He laughed, and Liz’s heart melted at the sound;
it was so warm and jovial, a big belly laugh.

Liz scrambled to her feet and began
to help him gather his things. He was still kneeling on the floor, and he
reached for a book; it was one of the same that Liz had, and their fingers brushed
fleetingly.

She pulled away as if shocked, and
quickly put her own books back in her bag. Realizing she’d put one of his books
in her bag by mistake, she held it out to him, smiling self-consciously.

“First, I bump into you and
practically run you over, and then I try to take one of your library books! We
really haven’t started on the right foot, have we?”

He laughed, taking it from her. “Really,
it’s fine. And after all, it’s not every day a pretty girl bumps into me. What’s
your name? I’m Rhys.”

“I’m Liz. It’s great to meet you,
Rhys.” She frowned to herself for a moment, then took the plunge, screwing up
her courage before she lost it.

“After I turn in these overdue books,
would you like to go out for coffee with me? My treat. It’s the least I can do
after running into you like that.”

“I’d love that, Liz.”

**