Nora is a cut-throat literary agent at the top of her game. Her whole life is books.
Charlie is an editor with a gift for creating bestsellers. And he’s Nora’s work nemesis.
Nora has been through enough break-ups to know she’s the woman men date before they find their happy-ever-after. That’s why Nora’s sister has persuaded her to swap her desk in the city for a month’s holiday in Sunshine Falls, North Carolina. It’s a small town straight out of a romance novel, but instead of meeting sexy lumberjacks, handsome doctors or cute bartenders, Nora keeps bumping into…Charlie.
She’s no heroine. He’s no hero. So can they take a page out of an entirely different book?
Emily Henry’s Book Lovers follows an unapologetic, cutthroat literary agent as she vacations to a small town, only to run into the belligerent, grumpy book editor that she despises. The book explores the cliche of the small town love story, and the common trope of enemies to lovers.
Perpetually single, Nora is career-driven and thrives under pressure. She loves books — editing them and advocating for them — and she strives for success. She is goal-oriented and never feels she has to apologise for her ambition. On her vacation, when she’s constantly crossing paths with the devious editor Charlie, she realises just how similar they really are. Maybe there’s more to him than she realised.
“It’s late in the day for lunch, so the crowd is thin, and I spot Charlie Lastra near the back, dressed in all black like publishing’s own metropolitan vampire.”
Book Lovers is upbeat and relatable, bringing to life a cast of characters who are fun to read.
The setting is quaint and cosy, and the character banter enjoyable. Nora’s relationship with her sister provides a nice additional layer to the story, exploring family responsibilities and what we owe to each other when each other is all we’ve had.
The chemistry between Nora and Charlie builds over the course of the novel and will please romance readers — whilst the heat builds quickly, an energy of ‘will they or won’t they’ persists throughout the book because their circumstances make it difficult to pursue any kind of relationship.
“I go toward her, wrap my arms around her, and hold tight. She circles me in hers too, her lemon-lavender scent settling over me like a blanket, her glossy strawberry waves falling across my shoulders as she runs a hand over the back of my head.”
Emily Henry’s books suit readers looking for light content — perhaps someone looking for a beach read, or something to take on vacation. You’ll power through this in a short amount of time, and when you’re finished, there are two other Emily Henry books out there for you to discover.
“Happy doesn’t begin to cover it. The image of stern-browned, highly polished Charlie tucked into a plastic Corvette and scowling at his Kindle makes me laugh so hard it’s a struggle to stay upright. He’s probably the last person I could picture in a race car bed, aside from myself.”
Fun and light-hearted, Book Lovers is recommended for readers of romance, comedy and contemporary women’s fiction. Readership skews female, 20+
Thank you to the publisher for sending me a review copy in exchange for an honest review.
Penguin Random House Publishers Australia