HaBO: Poodle Offended by Bad Fashion
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Articles / December 31, 2019

This HaBO request is from Melissa, who wants to find this contemporary romance with suspense elements: Not sure how long ago I read this, but it was a contemporary romance (possibly romantic suspense) with a heroine who owned her own clothing/accessories store and had a poodle who (not joking) was offended by badly dressed people. At one point, the poodle growls at the hero for putting on a jacket that does not go with the pants/shirt he’s wearing. The hero was a cop (or possibly a PI) who comes to investigate when her store is broken into. He then becomes her bodyguard when it’s clear she is being targeted. It turns out someone is using her store to smuggle jewels (possibly stolen but I’m not sure) into the country as part of what is supposed to be costume jewelry that she sells in the store. I really hope this rings bells for someone! Who knows this one?

Nonfiction, Contemporary Romance, & More
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Articles / December 31, 2019

Phoenix Unbound Phoenix Unbound by Grace Draven is $1.99! I gave this one a C-, but I’d still recommend it with large caveats. 1) All of the trigger warnings. 2) It’s dense and the slow burn is quite slow. 3) There’s a magical infertility cure. Draven’s writing is always top notch and I’m curious about the next book, which follows a different couple. A woman with power over fire and illusion and an enslaved son of a chieftain battle a corrupt empire in this powerful and deeply emotional romantic fantasy from the USA Todaybestselling author of Radiance. Every year, each village is required to send a young woman to the Empire’s capital–her fate to be burned alive for the entertainment of the masses. For the last five years, one small village’s tithe has been the same woman. Gilene’s sacrifice protects all the other young women of her village, and her secret to staying alive lies with the magic only she possesses. But this year is different. Azarion, the Empire’s most famous gladiator, has somehow seen through her illusion–and is set on blackmailing Gilene into using her abilities to help him escape his life of slavery. And unknown to Gilene, he also wants to…

HaBO: Heroine Plays the Organ
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Articles / December 31, 2019

This HaBO is from JoJo, who is looking for a book they read ages ago: I read this book a million years ago…but it has stuck with me because it was so off the beaten path! The main character is a woman who writes Christian music, and I think plays the organ. She’s really good, but she’s not really a believer. It was so funny and irreverent that I would love to read it again. Sorry…that’s all I got. I’m assuming this is a contemporary?

Love Lettering by Kate Clayborn
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Articles / December 31, 2019

A Love Lettering by Kate Clayborn December 31, 2019 · Kensington Books Contemporary RomanceRomance Love Lettering is a way to end the decade on a perfect note. Or perhaps it’s a way to start the new decade on a perfect note. Whichever option you choose, my enthusiastic recommendation remains the same. It’s not a book to race through and devour in a short span of time. My advice is to linger on each page and let the words engulf you. Love Lettering is about signs, art, words, and the power they wield over us — it’s only fitting that the reader treats the neat black letters on the page with as much gravity as the book does. Meg Mackworth is at the pinnacle of her professional career and the rock-bottom of her personal life. Blessed with Instagram renown and a New York Times endorsement, The Planner of Park Slope has no shortage of clamoring clients to commission intricate hand-lettering and calligraphy. The inexplicable erosion of her relationship with roommate-slash-BFF Sibby is Meg’s biggest problem…until Wall Street quantitative analyst Reid Sutherland walks through the door. A former client with an engagement that never reached the altar, Reid is in possession of…