Reading List

A compendium of the books I've read. (I'm still working on updating/uploading the data.)

Cover of Late to the Party ★★★★

Late to the Party

By Kelly Quindlen

★★★★

Description

Seventeen is nothing like Codi Teller imagined.

She’s never crashed a party, never stayed out too late. She’s never even been kissed. And it’s not just because she’s gay. It’s because she and her two best friends, Maritza and JaKory, spend more time in her basement watching Netflix than engaging with the outside world.

So when Maritza and JaKory suggest crashing a party, Codi is highly skeptical. Those parties aren’t for kids like them. They’re for cool kids. Straight kids.

But then Codi stumbles upon one of those cool kids, Ricky, kissing another boy in the dark, and an unexpected friendship is formed. In return for never talking about that kiss, Ricky takes Codi under his wing and draws her into a wild summer filled with late nights, new experiences, and one really cute girl named Lydia.

The only problem? Codi never tells Maritza or JaKory about any of it.

Cover of The Road to You ★★★

The Road to You

By Harper Bliss

★★★

Description

Workaholic Katherine and free-spirited singer Ali have disliked each other since college. Fate, however, keeps bringing them together, and the paths of their lives keep crossing. Are some differences in personality simply too vast to overcome? Or are some things just meant to be?

Cover of Once Upon A Princess ★★★★

Once Upon A Princess

By Clare Lydon & Harper Bliss

★★★★

Description

Can true love be their crowning glory?

Olivia Charlton is a princess who believes in love — not a high priority in a royal family hung up on tradition and duty.

Meanwhile, village sweetheart Rosie Perkins has no time for affairs of the heart — she's just struggling to keep her cafe and life afloat.

When Olivia heads to Cornwall to escape her royal duties for a few weeks, the two meet and sparks fly. But can a cafe owner and a princess truly end up with their own happily ever after when all the odds are stacked against them?

Cover of The House in the Cerulean Sea ★★★★★

The House in the Cerulean Sea

By TJ Klune

★★★★★

Description

Linus Baker leads a quiet, solitary life. At forty, he lives in a tiny house with a devious cat and his old records. As a Case Worker at the Department in Charge Of Magical Youth, he spends his days overseeing the well-being of children in government-sanctioned orphanages.

When Linus is unexpectedly summoned by Extremely Upper Management he's given a curious and highly classified assignment: travel to Marsyas Island Orphanage, where six dangerous children reside: a gnome, a sprite, a wyvern, an unidentifiable green blob, a were-Pomeranian, and the Antichrist. Linus must set aside his fears and determine whether or not they’re likely to bring about the end of days.

But the children aren’t the only secret the island keeps. Their caretaker is the charming and enigmatic Arthur Parnassus, who will do anything to keep his wards safe. As Arthur and Linus grow closer, long-held secrets are exposed, and Linus must make a choice: destroy a home or watch the world burn.

Cover of You're My Kind ★★★

You're My Kind

By Claire Lydon

★★★

Description

Justine Thomas and Maddie Kind met at university and were the couple most likely. Everybody said so. That is, until Maddie left without saying goodbye.

Ten years later the pair are reunited at a friend’s funeral, and now Justine can’t shake Maddie from her life. But why is she back? Why did she disappear? And more importantly, is she interested in the whole cake, or just one last slice of Justine?

Cover of Beach Read ★★★★★

Beach Read

By Emily Henry

★★★★★

Description

Augustus Everett is an acclaimed author of literary fiction. January Andrews writes bestselling romance. When she pens a happily ever after, he kills off his entire cast.

They're polar opposites. In fact, the only thing they have in common is that for the next three months, they're living in neighboring beach houses, broke, and bogged down with writer's block.

Until, one hazy evening, one thing leads to another and they strike a deal designed to force them out of their creative ruts: Augustus will spend the summer writing something happy, and January will pen the next Great American Novel. She'll take him on field trips worthy of any rom-com montage, and he'll take her to interview surviving members of a backwoods death cult (obviously). Everyone will finish a book and no one will fall in love. Really.

Cover of Windfall ★★★★

Windfall

By Jennifer E. Smith

★★★★

Description

Alice doesn’t believe in luck—at least, not the good kind. But she does believe in love, and for some time now, she’s been pining for her best friend, Teddy. On his eighteenth birthday—just when it seems they might be on the brink of something—she buys him a lottery ticket on a lark. To their astonishment, he wins $140 million, and in an instant, everything changes.

At first, it seems like a dream come true, especially since the two of them are no strangers to misfortune. As a kid, Alice won the worst kind of lottery possible when her parents died just over a year apart from each other. And Teddy’s father abandoned his family not long after that, leaving them to grapple with his gambling debts. Through it all, Teddy and Alice have leaned on each other. But now, as they negotiate the ripple effects of Teddy’s newfound wealth, a gulf opens between them. And soon, the money starts to feel like more of a curse than a windfall.

Cover of Hairpin Curves ★★★

Hairpin Curves

By Elia Winters

★★★

Description

Megan Harris had hopes of seeing the world, but at twenty-five she’s never even left Florida. Now a wedding invitation lures her to Quebec…in February. When her ex-friend Scarlett offers to be her plus-one (yeah, that’s a whole story) and suggests they turn the journey into an epic road trip, Megan reluctantly agrees to the biggest adventure of her life.

A week together in a car is a surefire way to kill a crush, and Scarlett Andrews has had a big one on Megan for years. The important thing is fixing their friendship.

As the miles roll away, what starts as harmless road-trip games and rest-stop dares escalates into something like intimacy. And when a surprise snowstorm forces Megan and Scarlett to hunker down without the open road as distraction, they’ve got a bigger challenge than making it to the church on time: facing the true nature of their feelings for each other.

Cover of If We Were Us ★★★★

If We Were Us

By K.L. Walther

★★★★

Description

Everyone at the prestigious Bexley School believes that Sage Morgan and Charlie Carmichael are meant to be....that it’s just a matter of time until they realize that they are actually in love.

When Luke Morrissey shows up on the Bexley campus his presence immediately shakes things up. Charlie and Luke are drawn to each other the moment they meet, giving Sage the opportunity to steal away to spend time with Charlie’s twin brother, Nick.

But Charlie is afraid of what others will think if he accepts that he has much more than a friendship with Luke. And Sage fears that things with Nick are getting too serious too quickly. The duo will need to rely on each other and their lifelong friendship to figure things out with the boys they love. (less)

Cover of Dress Codes for Small Towns ★★★★

Dress Codes for Small Towns

By Courtney C. Stevens

★★★★

Description

As the tomboy daughter of the town’s preacher, Billie McCaffrey has always struggled with fitting the mold of what everyone says she should be. She’d rather wear sweats, build furniture, and get into trouble with her solid group of friends: Woods, Mash, Davey, Fifty, and Janie Lee.

But when Janie Lee confesses to Billie that she’s in love with Woods, Billie’s filled with a nagging sadness as she realizes that she is also in love with Woods…and maybe with Janie Lee, too.

Always considered “one of the guys,” Billie doesn’t want anyone slapping a label on her sexuality before she can understand it herself. So she keeps her conflicting feelings to herself, for fear of ruining the group dynamic. Except it’s not just about keeping the peace, it’s about understanding love on her terms—this thing that has always been defined as a boy and a girl falling in love and living happily ever after. For Billie—a box-defying dynamo—it’s not that simple.

Cover of Fame Adjacent ★★★★

Fame Adjacent

By Sarah Skilton

★★★★

Description

Holly Danner has a complicated relationship with fame. It's not easy being the only cast member of a 1990s song-and-dance show who didn't become famous. When she was eleven, she used to do anything for a laugh (or at least a laugh-track) on "Diego and the Lion's Den." If she talked about it--which she almost never does--Holly might explain how her childhood best friends came to dominate the worlds of pop music, film, and TV while she was relegated to a few near-misses and a nanny gig for her niece. She'd even be telling the truth about making peace with the whole thing years ago.

But when she finds out there's a 25th anniversary for the show planned--a televised reunion, clip show, and panel--and she wasn't invited, it's time for an impromptu road trip to crash the event and set the record straight. Three problems: she's currently in Internet Rehab (perhaps she's not quite as well-adjusted as she believes...), she has no cash, and the only person who can get her across the country in time is Thom Parker, a handsome, infuriatingly level-headed patient who doesn't think she should confront her famous ex-friends.

Cover of Old Souls ★★★★

Old Souls

By Brian McDonald

★★★★

Description

Chris Olsen has a good life. He has a regular job, a wife and daughter who love him, and a promising future. By any measure this is a good life, but it isn’t his first.

When a troubling encounter with a homeless man triggers something inside Chris, memories of his past lives bubble to the surface. A lost Chinese boy, a wailing grandmother, and a love so powerful it never left his soul—all compete for his attention.

Chris sinks deep into the seedy and seductive world of “grave robbers,” vagrants known for their ability to relive their former lives. But can he find closure to a tragic episode in his past without losing himself in the process?

Cover of Ask Me Anything ★★★

Ask Me Anything

By P.Z. Reizin

★★★

Description

Wouldn't it be great if everyone had a team of smart machines to handle all the messy emotional stuff? When you consider how many quadrillions of hours of human drudgery have been eradicated by the invention of only the dishwasher, the washing machine and (ahem) the fridge freezer, is it absurd to imagine a scenario in which household appliances bring the same -- yes! -- genius to bear on the slow-motion car crash that is (for many young people) the romantic side of their lives? If they are content to leave their dishes, dirty linen and food refrigeration to smart technology, how much of a stretch is it for machines to take care of their emotional needs?

Chloe and Daisy Parsloe only have each other, since Daisy's dad left for sunnier climes and a new family. But now Daisy is in her early thirties, she's not doing brilliantly at work, her love life is haphazard (to put it kindly) and her elderly mum seems to be losing her mind . . . Daisy is also the proud possessor of a smart fridge, which keeps trying to help Daisy sort out her life by sending her texts to tell her that she's out of milk, or that the pasta salad has gone out of date. What Daisy doesn't know is that her smart fridge, like her smart toothbrush, microwave, tv, fitness tracker, and laptop all want to help her smooth out her chaotic existence -- and help her mother, Mrs. Parsloe, stay independently living at home. Operation Daisy is about to make both the Parsloes' lives much, much happier.

Cover of It Had To Be You ★★★★

It Had To Be You

By Georgia Clark

★★★★

Description

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.

Cover of Cool for the Summer ★★★★

Cool for the Summer

By Dahlia Adler

★★★★

Description

Lara's had eyes for exactly one person throughout her three years of high school: Chase Harding. He's tall, strong, sweet, a football star, and frankly, stupid hot. Oh, and he's talking to her now. On purpose and everything. Maybe...flirting, even? No, wait, he's definitely flirting, which is pretty much the sum of everything Lara's wanted out of life.

Except she’s haunted by a memory. A memory of a confusing, romantic, strangely perfect summer spent with a girl named Jasmine. A memory that becomes a confusing, disorienting present when Jasmine herself walks through the front doors of the school to see Lara and Chase chatting it up in front of the lockers.

Lara has everything she ever wanted: a tight-knit group of friends, a job that borders on cool, and Chase, the boy of her literal dreams. But if she's finally got the guy, why can't she stop thinking about the girl?

Cover of Woman World ★★★★

Woman World

By Aminder Dhaliwal

★★★★

Description

When a birth defect wipes out the planet’s entire population of men, Woman World rises out of society’s ashes. Dhaliwal’s infectiously funny instagram comic follows the rebuilding process, tracking a group of women who have rallied together under the flag of “Beyonce’s Thighs.” Only Grandma remembers the distant past, a civilization of segway-riding mall cops, Blockbuster movie rental shops, and “That’s What She Said” jokes. For the most part, Woman World’s residents are focused on their struggles with unrequited love and anxiety, not to mention that whole “survival of humanity” thing.

Cover of The Twilight Man: Rod Serlig and the Birth of Television ★★★★★

The Twilight Man: Rod Serlig and the Birth of Television

By Koren Shadmi

★★★★★

Description

We recognize Rod Serling as our sharply dressed, cigarette-smoking tour guide of The Twilight Zone, but the entertainment business once regarded him as the "Angry Young Man" of Hollywood. Before he became the revered master of science fiction, Rod Serling was a just a writer who had to fight to make his voice heard. He vehemently challenged the networks and viewership alike to expand their minds and standards―rejecting notions of censorship, racism and war. But it wasn’t until he began to write about real world enemies in the guise of aliens and monsters that people lent their ears. In doing so, he pushed the television industry to the edge of glory, and himself to the edge of sanity. Rod operated in a dimension beyond that of contemporary society, making him both a revolutionary and an outsider.

Cover of The Love Study: An LGBTQ Romcom ★★★★

The Love Study: An LGBTQ Romcom

By Kris Ripper

★★★★

Description

Declan has commitment issues. He’s been an office temp for literally years now, and his friends delight in telling people that he left his last boyfriend at the altar.

And that’s all true. But he’s starting to think it’s time to start working on his issues. Maybe.

When Declan meets Sidney—a popular nonbinary YouTuber with an advice show—an opportunity presents itself: as part of The Love Study, Declan will go on a series of dates arranged by Sidney and report back on how the date went in the next episode.

The dates are…sort of blah. It’s not Sidney’s fault; the folks participating are (mostly) great people, but there’s no chemistry there. Maybe Declan’s just broken.

Or maybe the problem is that the only person he’s feeling chemistry with is Sidney.

Cover of Ghosting: A Love Story ★★★★

Ghosting: A Love Story

By Tash Skilton

★★★★

Description

Dumped by his fiancée, not only is Miles couch-surfing across New York City, but downsizing has forced him to set up shop at a local café. Also, he no longer believes in love. Not a good look in his line of work…helping people find love as a ghostwriter for a failing dating site.

Zoey’s eccentric L.A. boss sent her packing to New York to “grow.” But beneath her chill Cali demeanor, Zoey’s anxiety makes her terrified to venture beyond the café across the street into the big city…

Finding themselves competing for space at Café Crudite, the only thing Miles and Zoey think they share is their daily battle for last day-old biscotti and a mutual dislike of each other. They don’t know they’re both writers, creating “authentic” profiles for rival online dating services. They think they have absolutely nothing in common. . . . until they meet anonymously online while pretending to be their clients and sparks fly.

Cover of Zoe Rosenthal Is Not Lawful Good ★★★

Zoe Rosenthal Is Not Lawful Good

By Nancy Werlin

★★★

Description

Planning is Zoe Rosenthal’s superpower. She has faith in a properly organized to-do list and avoids unnecessary risks. Her mental checklist goes something like this: 1) Meet soulmate: DONE! 2) Make commitment: DONE! 3) Marriage: TO COME! (after college). She isn’t sure which college yet, but it will have a strong political science department, since her perfect boyfriend, Simon, plans to “save the country,” as his sister puts it, “and the planet and everything.” Zoe will follow along, the perfect serious, supportive girlfriend. It’s good to have her love life resolved, checked off, done. But speaking of unnecessary risks, Zoe’s on a plane to Atlanta, sneaking off to Dragon Con for the second season premiere of Bleeders. The show is subject to her boyfriend’s lofty scorn, but Zoe is nothing like these colorful hordes “wearing their inside on their outside.” Once her flirtation with fandom is over, she will get back to the important business of planning a future with Simon. The trouble is, right now, Bleeders—and her fellow “Bloodygits”—may just mean the world to her. Will a single night of nerdery be enough?

Cover of Right Number, Wrong Woman ★★★★

Right Number, Wrong Woman

By Jae

★★★★

Description

A single text message can change everything! Flirting has never been Denny’s strong suit, but so what if she’s too shy to ask women out? She’s content with her simple life, working as a cashier and helping her sister raise her niece.

But then she gets a wrong-number text message from a stranger named Eliza, asking her of all people for dating advice!

Eliza is Denny’s total opposite: witty, outgoing—and straight. Despite their differences, the accidental text sparks an unlikely friendship. Soon, Eliza—self-proclaimed queen of disastrous first dates—would rather banter back and forth with Denny than to keep trying her luck at online dating.

Cover of Two Hearts Forever ★★★

Two Hearts Forever

By Harper Bliss

★★★

Description

After overcoming their difficulties in Two Hearts Together, Anna and Zoe are nurturing their relationship, letting it grow slowly but surely.

When a surprise visitor shows up in Donovan Grove, things threaten to go off course. Or will the unexpected circumstances help Anna and Zoe grow closer to each other?

Cover of The Falling In Love Montage ★★★★★

The Falling In Love Montage

By Ciara Smyth

★★★★★

Description

Saoirse doesn’t believe in love at first sight or happy endings. If they were real, her mother would still be able to remember her name and not in a care home with early onset dementia. A condition that Saoirse may one day turn out to have inherited. So she’s not looking for a relationship. She doesn’t see the point in igniting any romantic sparks if she’s bound to burn out.

But after a chance encounter at an end-of-term house party, Saoirse is about to break her own rules. For a girl with one blue freckle, an irresistible sense of mischief, and a passion for rom-coms.

Unbothered by Saoirse’s no-relationships rulebook, Ruby proposes a loophole: They don’t need true love to have one summer of fun, complete with every cliché, rom-com montage-worthy date they can dream up—and a binding agreement to end their romance come fall. It would be the perfect plan, if they weren’t forgetting one thing about the Falling in Love Montage: when it’s over, the characters actually fall in love… for real.

Cover of The Proposal ★★★★

The Proposal

By Jasmine Guillory

★★★★

Description

When freelance writer Nikole Paterson goes to a Dodgers game with her actor boyfriend, his man bun, and his bros, the last thing she expects is a scoreboard proposal. Saying no isn't the hard part--they've only been dating for five months, and he can't even spell her name correctly. The hard part is having to face a stadium full of disappointed fans...

At the game with his sister, Carlos Ibarra comes to Nik's rescue and rushes her away from a camera crew. He's even there for her when the video goes viral and Nik's social media blows up--in a bad way. Nik knows that in the wilds of LA, a handsome doctor like Carlos can't be looking for anything serious, so she embarks on an epic rebound with him, filled with food, fun, and fantastic sex. But when their glorified hookups start breaking the rules, one of them has to be smart enough to put on the brakes...

Cover of Something to Live For ★★★★

Something to Live For

By Richard Roper

★★★★

Description

All Andrew wants is to be normal. That's why his coworkers believe he has the perfect wife and two children waiting at home for him after a long day. But the truth is, his life isn't exactly as people think . . . and his little white lie is about to catch up with him. Because in all of Andrew's efforts to fit in, he's forgotten one important thing: how to really live. And maybe, it's finally time for him to start.