ENJOY THE VIEW by Sarah Morgenthaler

May 17, 2021

Moose Springs, Alaska, Book 3

From the publisher:

A grouchy mountaineer, a Hollywood starlet
And miles of untamed wilderness…
What could possibly go wrong?

Former Hollywood darling River Lane’s acting career is tanking fast. Determined to start fresh behind the camera, she agrees to film a documentary about the picturesque small town of Moose Springs, Alaska. The assignment should have been easy, but the quirky locals want nothing to do with River. Well, too bad: River’s going to make this film and prove herself, no matter what it takes.

Or what (literal) mountain she has to climb.

Easton Lockett may be a gentle giant, but he knows a thing or two about survival. If he can keep everyone in line, he should be able to get River and her crew up and down Mount Veil in one piece. Turns out that’s a big if. The wildlife’s wilder than usual, the camera crew’s determined to wander off a cliff, and the gorgeous actress is fearless. Falling for River only makes Easton’s job tougher, but there’s only so long he can hold out against her brilliant smile. When bad weather strikes, putting everyone at risk, it’ll take all of Easton’s skill to get them back home safely…and convince River she should stay in his arms for good.


This is one of my favorite series so I was very happy that this third entry was just as good as the first two. Alaska is one of my favorite settings, and small towns are always a good thing for me. But sometimes you have to bring in outsiders to make a romance, and that’s what happens here.

River is a movie star who wants to work behind the camera making documentaries. When she is offered the opportunity to make one about this small town, she’s all in. Except the people who live there are not. They are a quirky bunch for sure, and don’t take kindly to the tourists that come through so they are not of a mind to help with a documentary that is sure to bring in even more people. But River is nothing if not determined, and she gets to work with a small crew.

When River meets Easton, a local guide, she somehow convinces him to help her. He has never met a woman as fearless as River, or as beautiful, but he is not looking for love or to increase tourism to their small town. Nevertheless, he ends up doing both.

There are some really funny, laugh out loud moments, and some dangerous ones, too, making this a book that is hard to put down. I loved the characters and the setting and the romance, a perfect trifecta of a read. This is the third book of a series and while they each stand alone, I think they are best read in order:

The Tourist Attraction (Book 1)

Mistletoe and Mr. Right (Book 2)

You’re welcome!

5/2021 Stacy Alesi, AKA the BookBitch

ENJOY THE VIEW by Sarah Morgenthaler. Sourcebooks Casablanca (January 19, 2021). ISBN: 978-1728226316. 384 pages.

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CAN’T HURRY LOVE by Melinda Curtis

May 14, 2021

Sunshine Valley, Book 1

From the publisher:

From a USA Today bestselling author comes a heartwarming romance about a city girl who finds herself widowed in a quirky small town and the new target of the town’s relentless matchmaking Widows Club.

Head-over-heels in love, Lola Williams gave up everything to marry Randy, including a promising career in New York City. Now, after one year of marriage and one year of widowhood, Lola finds herself stranded in Sunshine, Colorado, reeling from the revelation that Randy had secrets she never could have imagined. She swears she’s done with love forever but the matchmaking ladies of the Sunshine Valley Widows Club have different plans…

Sheriff Drew Taylor also knows what it feels like to be unlucky in love. So when Lola comes to him for help uncovering Randy’s hidden life, Drew finds himself saying yes against his better judgment – especially with the Widows Club eyeing them both. Soon enough, Lola is upending Drew’s peaceful, predictable world…and he kind of likes it! But will this big-city girl ever give her heart to a small-town guy again?


This author was new to me, and as this is a new series, I’m happy to report that this was a terrific read and I’m looking forward to the next book in the series.

It’s always terribly sad when a young woman is widowed, especially after only a year of marriage. Then to find out that your husband had some serious secrets only adds to the grieving process. But there is a Widow’s Club in this small town, and while Lola is decades younger than the rest, they nonetheless decide that she needs a man, and the widows go into a matchmaking frenzy.

This is a very sweet romance, and I loved all the quirky characters. I really liked that the Sheriff also had some baggage that he had to deal with, too. I am a sucker for small towns (never having lived in one) and while this was more sweet than steamy, it had humor and heart and I couldn’t put it down.

5/2021 Stacy Alesi, AKA the BookBitch

CAN’T HURRY LOVE by Melinda Curtis. Forever; Reissue edition (March 31, 2020). ISBN: 978-1538733417. 512 pages.

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CAN’T HURRY LOVE by Melinda Curtis

May 10, 2021

Sunshine Valley, Book 1

From the publisher:

From a USA Today bestselling author comes a heartwarming romance about a city girl who finds herself widowed in a quirky small town and the new target of the town’s relentless matchmaking Widows Club.

Head-over-heels in love, Lola Williams gave up everything to marry Randy, including a promising career in New York City. Now, after one year of marriage and one year of widowhood, Lola finds herself stranded in Sunshine, Colorado, reeling from the revelation that Randy had secrets she never could have imagined. She swears she’s done with love forever but the matchmaking ladies of the Sunshine Valley Widows Club have different plans…

Sheriff Drew Taylor also knows what it feels like to be unlucky in love. So when Lola comes to him for help uncovering Randy’s hidden life, Drew finds himself saying yes against his better judgment – especially with the Widows Club eyeing them both. Soon enough, Lola is upending Drew’s peaceful, predictable world…and he kind of likes it! But will this big-city girl ever give her heart to a small-town guy again?


I love finding new authors, and this author was new to me but not for long – I’m going to be reading some of her older books soon. This one was really good.

I always enjoy books set in small towns. I’ve never lived anywhere like that, so I find it interesting. This small town is run by a group of widows and they are matchmakers. Lola and Drew make a great couple, only they don’t know it yet. Lola is a young widow trying to find out more about her husband and Drew is the perfect man to help her.

There are a lot of laughs and some very sweet, poignant moments as well. Sex is more implied than graphic. I couldn’t help but root for these characters to find their happily ever after. Luckily, this is the first book of a series and I am looking forward to the next book for sure!

5/2021 Stacy Alesi, AKA the BookBitch

CAN’T HURRY LOVE by Melinda Curtis. Forever; Reissue edition (March 31, 2020). ISBN: 978-1538733417. 512 pages.

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SHIPPED by Angie Hockman

May 9, 2021

From the publisher:

The Unhoneymooners meets The Hating Game in this witty, clever, and swoonworthy novel following a workaholic marketing manager who is forced to go on a cruise with her arch-nemesis when they’re up for the same promotion.

Between taking night classes for her MBA and her demanding day job at a cruise line, marketing manager Henley Evans barely has time for herself, let alone family, friends, or dating. But when she’s shortlisted for the promotion of her dreams, all her sacrifices finally seem worth it.

The only problem? Graeme Crawford-Collins, the remote social media manager and the bane of her existence, is also up for the position. Although they’ve never met in person, their epic email battles are the stuff of office legend.

Their boss tasks each of them with drafting a proposal on how to boost bookings in the Galápagos—best proposal wins the promotion. There’s just one catch: they have to go on a company cruise to the Galápagos Islands…together. But when the two meet on the ship, Henley is shocked to discover that the real Graeme is nothing like she imagined. As they explore the Islands together, she soon finds the line between loathing and liking thinner than a postcard.

With her career dreams in her sights and a growing attraction to the competition, Henley begins questioning her life choices. Because what’s the point of working all the time if you never actually live?

Perfect for fans of Christina Lauren and Sally Thorne, Shipped is a fresh and engaging rom-com that celebrates the power of second chances and the magic of new beginnings.


I am always excited when I find a new author to add to my ‘must read’ list. The enemies-to-lovers trope is at the forefront of this really cute romance. Although they’ve never actually met, Henley and Graeme really hate each other, all via email. When their boss offers up a chance for promotion, they both want it, even if it means taking a cruise to the Galapagos together. The company wants a new campaign to improve their cruise business and Henley and Graeme have lots of ideas. It’s totally believable and these characters are so well developed, we can’t help but root for them both.

The setting – both the cruise ship and the Galapagos are unusual, exotic, and add another layer to the story. But it’s the chemistry between these two characters that really heat up the novel and totally sucked me in. The secondary characters add a lot of humor as well. Lots of laughs, plenty of charm, and a sizzling hot romance make for a terrific read that actually lives up to its hype. Don’t miss it – I almost did as it got lost in my to-be-read pile, but I am so glad I found it.

5/2021 Stacy Alesi, AKA the BookBitch

SHIPPED by Angie Hockman. Gallery Books; Reprint edition (January 19, 2021). ISBN: 978-1982151591. 336 pages.

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THE EX TALK by Rachel Lynn Solomon

May 7, 2021

From the publisher:

Public radio co-hosts navigate mixed signals in Rachel Lynn Solomon’s sparkling romantic comedy debut.
 
Shay Goldstein has been a producer at her Seattle public radio station for nearly a decade, and she can’t imagine working anywhere else. But lately it’s been a constant clash between her and her newest colleague, Dominic Yun, who’s fresh off a journalism master’s program and convinced he knows everything about public radio. 
 
When the struggling station needs a new concept, Shay proposes a show that her boss green-lights with excitement. On The Ex Talk, two exes will deliver relationship advice live, on air. Their boss decides Shay and Dominic are the perfect co-hosts, given how much they already despise each other. Neither loves the idea of lying to listeners, but it’s this or unemployment. Their audience gets invested fast, and it’s not long before The Ex Talk becomes a must-listen in Seattle and climbs podcast charts.  
 
As the show gets bigger, so does their deception, especially when Shay and Dominic start to fall for each other. In an industry that values truth, getting caught could mean the end of more than just their careers.


Enemies to lovers. If that isn’t your thing, you can stop now. I happen to like that trope, and Solomon really ups the ante with the fact that these are journalists faking the news. Yep, you read that right. Now it’s not exactly news, but still it is public radio and there are definitely levels of expectation here of honesty. That is not delivered.

This radio station, like many public radio stations, struggles with financing. Layoffs are imminent and they need a hit show, something that get go national, to bring their station back from the brink. The Ex Talk seems like a really fun idea – get two exes to offer relationship advice. But instead of finding a couple post breakup, the the station manager decides that two of his producers would be great – they already hate each other.

Shay is proud of her work as a producer and never really tried to be an on air personality. Dominic is a bit of a know-it-all, fresh off his masters in journalism. They are constantly sniping at each other, which should make great radio and it does. The show takes off and is hugely popular. But then the unthinkable happens (at least to anyone who’s never read a romance) – they fall in love, fighting it every minute.

I really enjoyed this – lots of laughs and some smart dialogue, too.

5/2021 Stacy Alesi, AKA the BookBitch

THE EX TALK by Rachel Lynn Solomon. Berkley (January 26, 2021). ISBN: 978-0593200124. 352 pages.

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IT HAD TO BE YOU by Georgia Clark

May 4, 2021

BLOG TOUR!

From the publisher:

The author of the “emotional, hilarious, and thought-provoking” (People) novel The Bucket List returns with a witty and heartfelt romantic comedy featuring a wedding planner, her unexpected business partner, and their coworkers in a series of linked love stories—perfect for fans of Christina Lauren and Casey McQuiston.

For the past twenty years, Liv and Eliot Goldenhorn have run In Love in New York, Brooklyn’s beloved wedding-planning business. When Eliot dies unexpectedly, he even more unexpectedly leaves half of the business to his younger, blonder girlfriend, Savannah.

Liv and Savannah are not a match made in heaven, to say the least. But what starts as a personal and professional nightmare transforms into something even savvy, cynical Liv Goldenhorn couldn’t begin to imagine.

It Had to Be You cleverly unites Liv, Savannah, and couples as diverse and unique as New York City itself, in a joyous Love-Actually-style braided narrative. The result is a smart, modern love story that truly speaks to our times. Second chances, secret romance, and steamy soul mates are front and center in this sexy, tender, and utterly charming rom-com.


When a book is compared to one of my favorite movies, “Love Actually,” I have to read it. Plus I love Georgia Clark, and I know I always like books from the Emily Bestler imprint at Simon & Schuster, so this was a win-win-win for me!

Liv is the center of this story. Married for years to Eliot, they have a young son who took years to conceive. The last few years of their marriage haven’t been great. They are business partners/wedding planners and while they work together well, they have definitely drifted apart in their private life. Then Eliot dies suddenly, and a young woman shows up with a new will. Eliot had been having an affair and left his half of the business to his girlfriend, Savannah.

To make matters worse, the day he died, they were running a wedding that turned into a disaster. The bride takes them to task on social media, and Liv just decides to hide in her house for a while. But eventually life pushes its way in, starting with Savannah who has promised free wedding planning to a social media influencer.

Liv and Savannah need to learn to work together. They also have vendors they work with – the florist, the caterer, a waitress, and the musicians. Lucky for us, all these characters embark on romances, and despite the number of characters and storylines, it was easy to follow. Clark is really great at character development, which is no easy feat with this many romances going on. But it works, and it works well. I really liked all these characters, and their stories were engaging and sexy and fun.

This is a terrific romcom, and I hated turning the last page. Don’t miss it!

5/2021 Stacy Alesi, AKA the BookBitch

IT HAD TO BE YOU by Georgia Clark. Atria/Emily Bestler Books (May 4, 2021). ISBN: 978-1982133191. 384 pages.

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DIAL A FOR AUNTIES by Jesse Q. Sutanto

April 27, 2021

From the publisher:

One of PopSugar’s “42 Books Everyone Will Be Talking About in 2021”!

What happens when you mix 1 (accidental) murder with 2 thousand wedding guests, and then toss in a possible curse on 3 generations of an immigrant Chinese-Indonesian family? 

You get 4 meddling Asian aunties coming to the rescue! 

When Meddelin Chan ends up accidentally killing her blind date, her meddlesome mother calls for her even more meddlesome aunties to help get rid of the body. Unfortunately, a dead body proves to be a lot more challenging to dispose of than one might anticipate, especially when it is inadvertently shipped in a cake cooler to the over-the-top billionaire wedding Meddy, her Ma, and aunties are working at an island resort on the California coastline. It’s the biggest job yet for the family wedding business—”Don’t leave your big day to chance, leave it to the Chans!”—and nothing, not even an unsavory corpse, will get in the way of her auntie’s perfect buttercream flowers.

But things go from inconvenient to downright torturous when Meddy’s great college love—and biggest heartbreak—makes a surprise appearance amid the wedding chaos. Is it possible to escape murder charges, charm her ex back into her life, and pull off a stunning wedding all in one weekend?


This is a top ten favorite on the April Library Reads list, and as far as I’m concerned, it should have been number one! Part mystery, part romance, part family drama, but mostly laugh-out-loud funny, this book hits it out of the park. And I’m super excited that Netflix is on board.

Meddy is the good girl in her family. There is a family curse where all the men leave, leaving her mom and her sisters to make up her family. Even her boy cousins have all moved away, but as much as Meddy wanted a different life, she just could not bring herself to leave her mom and her aunties, so she breaks up with the love of her life as he has been offered his dream job across the country. It just about kills Meddy, but she goes on with her life, settling into the family wedding planning business and trying not to think about the one who got away.

Her mom decides Meddy needs to meet someone so like all overly involved, well meaning moms, she sets up a fake profile for Meddy on a dating app, and pretends to be Meddy. There are red flags aplenty, but her mom, who is not a native English speaker never mind a keen reader of emojis, doesn’t realize what she’s done when she sets Meddy up on a blind date with a man she met online. It turns out he is as bad a guy as one could meet online, and Meddy accidentally kills him in self defense. I’m not spoiling anything here, this happens at the beginning of the book.

Meddy panics, dumps him in the trunk of her car, and takes him home to her mother, who calls in the aunties. These are the kind of relatives everyone should have, the kind who help you get rid of a body. But what ensues is just chaos, and it is hilarious. In between the insanity though, Meddy runs into the love of her life. Turns out he’s moved back and is now running the hotel where the family is running their biggest wedding yet.

Lots of over the top situations and slapstick humor, and it really works here. This book had me laughing out oud several times, and I I enjoyed every page. Honestly, it reminded me of the first few Stephanie Plum (Janet Evanovich) books only with a happy ending, and that is high praise! I also really liked learning about Chinese/Indonesian culture. This one is sure to make my best books of the year list – don’t miss it.

4/2021 Stacy Alesi, AKA the BookBitch

DIAL A FOR AUNTIES by Jesse Q. Sutanto. Berkley (April 27, 2021). ISBN: 978-0593333037. 320 pages.

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ACT YOUR AGE, EVE BROWN by Talia Hibbert

April 24, 2021

The Brown Sisters, Book 3

From the publisher:

AN INSTANT NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER

In Talia Hibbert’s newest rom-com, the flightiest Brown sister crashes into the life of an uptight B&B owner and has him falling hard—literally.

Featured on Parade, PopSugar, Marie Claire, Oprah Mag, Bustle, Shondaland, CNN.com, Kirkus Magazine, Bookpage, USA Today, Bookish, Bookriot, and more!

Eve Brown is a certified hot mess. No matter how hard she strives to do right, her life always goes horribly wrong. So she’s given up trying. But when her personal brand of chaos ruins an expensive wedding (someone had to liberate those poor doves), her parents draw the line. It’s time for Eve to grow up and prove herself—even though she’s not entirely sure how…

Jacob Wayne is in control. Always. The bed and breakfast owner’s on a mission to dominate the hospitality industry and he expects nothing less than perfection. So when a purple-haired tornado of a woman turns up out of the blue to interview for his open chef position, he tells her the brutal truth: not a chance in hell. Then she hits him with her car—supposedly by accident. Yeah, right.

Now his arm is broken, his B&B is understaffed, and the dangerously unpredictable Eve is fluttering around, trying to help. Before long, she’s infiltrated his work, his kitchen—and his spare bedroom. Jacob hates everything about it. Or rather, he should. Sunny, chaotic Eve is his natural-born nemesis, but the longer these two enemies spend in close quarters, the more their animosity turns into something else. Like Eve, the heat between them is impossible to ignore… and it’s melting Jacob’s frosty exterior.


This has turned into one of my favorite series, but I’m afraid I’ve reached the end. I’m pretty sure there are only three sisters, and honestly it’s hard to say whether they’ve saved the best for last. I’ve loved all these books!

Eve may be a mess, but she knows she is the most “normal” one in the family. Her two sisters are on the autism spectrum, so she recognizes Jacob’s issues immediately and better yet, knows exactly how to treat him. But he’s not going to be that easy.

After Eve accidentally hits him with her car, giving him a broken arm and a nasty concussion, she feels guilty enough to stick around and help out. Jacob doesn’t really want her there but he doesn’t have any other options. To his shock, his customers love her, her food is amazing, and he can’t help but like her too, as much as he fights it.

Meanwhile she has pretty much dropped off the face of the earth to her family, which suits her just fine. She is determined to prove them wrong about her and her flightiness by sticking with this job, even if Jacob is fighting her at every turn.

I loved these characters so much and I especially loved how Eve grew and learned about herself. The romance – enemies to lovers – was great, but it was the story and these characters that really drew me in. These books do not have to be read in order, but I highly recommend reading them all – they are really terrific! Can’t wait to see what Hibbert does next.

4/2021 Stacy Alesi, AKA the BookBitch

ACT YOUR AGE, EVE BROWN by Talia Hibbert. Avon (March 9, 2021). ISBN: 978-0062941275. 400 pages.

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SIRI, WHO AM I? by Sam Tschida

April 22, 2021

From the publisher:

Indie Next and Library Reads Pick
One of Cosmopolitan’s “Best New Books Coming Out in 2021”
One of POPSUGAR’s “Best New Books Coming Out in 2021”

A Millennial with amnesia uses her Instagram account to piece together her identity in this hilarious and whip-smart comedy about the ups and downs of influencer culture.

Mia might look like a Millennial but she was born yesterday. Emerging from a coma with short-term amnesia after an accident, Mia can’t remember her own name until the Siri assistant on her iPhone provides it. Based on her cool hairstyle (undercut with glamorous waves), dress (Prada), and signature lipstick (Chanel), she senses she’s wealthy, but the only way to know for sure is to retrace her steps once she leaves the hospital. Using Instagram and Uber, she arrives at the pink duplex she calls home in her posts but finds Max, a cute, off-duty postdoc supplementing his income with a house-sitting gig. He tells her the house belongs to JP, a billionaire with a chocolate empire. A few texts later, JP confirms her wildest dreams: they’re in love, Mia is living the good life, and he’ll be back that weekend.

But as Mia and Max work backward through her Instagram and across Los Angeles to learn more about her, they discover an ugly truth behind her perfect Instagram feed, and evidence that her head wound was no accident. Did Mia have it coming? And if so, is it too late for her to rewrite her story?


Amnesia! I haven’t read a good amnesia plot in a long time. While Mia leans who she is and where she lives from her phone (Siri is good for something after all!) she also doesn’t know how she ended up in the hospital, but it seems like there are a lot of people who would be happy to put her there. Let’s call this mystery adjacent. While there are a lot of unknowns, it is the romance that is at the heart of this fast moving story.

This also revolves around how social media rules our lives. Could you piece together your life from your social media accounts? I know I surely can! You don’t have to be a Kardashian to live your life online, and oversharing has become the norm and is exploited here for the humor. I love snark and Mia reminded me a bit of one of my favorite characters of film – Elle Woods from Legally Blonde. That combination of airhead and brains, beauty and kindness, yet apparently enough hostility in her life for her to end up with a traumatic head injury.

This was a thoroughly enjoyable read, and a pointed look at our culture. Nothing wrong with that!

4/2021 Stacy Alesi, AKA the BookBitch

SIRI, WHO AM I? by Sam Tschida. Quirk Books (January 12, 2021). ISBN: 978-1683691686. 352 pages.

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THE KINDRED SPIRITS SUPPER CLUB by Amy E. Reichert

April 20, 2021

THE KINDRED SPIRITS SUPPER CLUB by Amy E. Reichert. Berkley (April 20, 2021). ISBN: 978-0593197776. 352 pages.

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