Review of ‘Language of love’ edited by Astrid Ohletz and Lee Winter.

‘Language of love. A flirty, festive anthology’ is a collection of eleven lesfic short stories with the common theme of holiday season traditions around the world. Ylva is a very international and multicultural publishing company and this is reflected in this compilation. The mains characters in these stories includes an ice-queen, a shy lesbian, an allegedly straight woman, young and mature. It is also surprising the mixture of genres like romance, mystery, drama, crime and young adult.

I have to say that normally it’s hard to keep a high level of writing quality in a book with Read More »

Review of ‘Casting Lacey’ by Elle Spencer.

Quinn Kincaid is a famous actress at the top of her game but also extremely private. When she decides to come out as gay, her publicist suggests that she hires a fake girlfriend as a publicity stunt. Who better than Lacey Matthews, a sexy former soap opera star who got fired for coming out as gay?

This is a very good debut novel that combines the fake girlfriend trope with celebrity lifestyle. The main characters are two famous actresses in their 30s; Quinn is a typical ice queen and Lacey a bit of a rebel but both definitely diva material.

The characters are well portrayed and have off the charts chemistry. The story is full of humour, wit and saucy dialogues but also has angst and drama. I think that the book is at its best in the humorous parts which are really well written. For me, the drama and angst scenes were sometimes forced as a plot device rather than a result of the natural flow of the story.

Overall, ‘Casting Lacey’ is an entertaining and enjoyable read. Highly recommended if you are into the fake relationship trope and don’t mind a side of angst. 4 stars.

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Review of ‘London, actually’ by Clare Lydon.

Event planner Cleo Nightingale is 39 and recovering from a divorce two years ago. Her only rule for dating again is to avoid younger women. Becca Cramer is 23, exactly what Cleo doesn’t need. But she’s also gorgeous, mature and hard working, a combination difficult to resist. Will they have their happily ever after?

Clare Lydon’s novels are the epitome of lesbian rom-coms, full of romance, hot chemistry and feel good moments. Her books are funny, witty and quintessentially British, but not overwhelmingly so. The plots are tightly woven, the characters are well rounded and the dialogues are humorous and engaging. ‘London, actually’ is no exception. As is often the case with Ms. Lydon’s books, the readers just have to sit comfortably and enjoy the read.

This is book five in the ‘London Romance’ series and can be read as a standalone novel. ‘London, actually’ is an age gap romance with the stunning setting of London which the author describes beautifully. Even the weather is realistic. Both characters are very well portrayed and convincing. Becca seems quite mature for her age but, as the youngest of five siblings, is a credible trait. On the other hand, 39 year old Cleo comes with a baggage, though her resistance to younger women is justified. Their chemistry together is hot from the beginning and increases several notches as the story moves forward. Some of the scenes of Cleo and Becca together are incredibly cinematographic in the descriptions and, at the same time, intimate and evocative. My favorite is the scene at the Boston hotel bar drinking vodka-martinis with blue cheese olives. It will stay in my memory for a long time.

The secondary characters bring the whole story to life, specially Cleo’s best friend, and very pregnant, Heidi and Tracey, Becca’s pansexual flatmate. I wonder if Ms. Lydon is planning a story with them as leads (or maybe it’s my wishful thinking). Some of the couples from the previous books in the series appear in this one but there aren’t any major spoilers so there’s no need to read the series chronologically.

Overall, an entertaining, funny, hot and feel-good romance. Clare Lydon at her best. 5 stars.

ARC provided by the author in exchange for an honest review.

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