(I posted a book review last Friday, and normally wouldn’t do another so soon. I guess I lost my head after reading two books so close together that I liked so much. Unheard of!)
Publication date: May 2022
Category: Contemporary women’s fiction, romantic comedy.
Review, short version: Four roses out of four.
Review, long version:
I’ve read many book-related books: books about book clubs, books about bookstore owners, books about book writers, books about book editors.
The lead character in Emily Henry’s Book Lovers was a first for me: a book agent.
More correctly, a literary agent.
According to this article:
“What is a literary agent? In short, they’re the person whose job it is to sell your book to a publisher. Literary agents work to present great manuscripts to potential publishers, and while the agent’s primary role is to sell books and negotiate contracts, your agent can also be your motivation, your first editor, and your biggest supporter.”
Henry’s lead character, Nora Stephens, is described on the Book Lovers dust jacket as…
“…a heroine for her clients, for whom she lands enormous deals as a cutthroat literary agent…”
Nora, single and 32, has a sister, Libby, 28, who’s married and a mother of two with a third on the way. Both live in New York City, and even more important – both are New Yorkers.
The sisters’ relationship is complicated, and so are they. Their father abandoned them when Libby was still in the womb, and since then Nora has seen her role as her sister’s protector – from their loving but flaky mother, from things that go bump in the night, from the world in general.
But does Libby need Nora’s protecting?
Libby does need some time away from her overly busy life and two small daughters before the third arrives, and she convinces Nora to join her for a three-week vacation in Sunshine Falls, a small North Carolina town. Libby chose Sunshine Falls because it was the setting for a novel she’d read and loved.
But does Libby have ulterior motives?
Nora needs a vacation, but Nora doesn’t take vacations. Her work, and protecting Libby, are her life. When she dates, the relationship is brief and ends badly. When she cries – well, she doesn’t cry. Period.
Nora hasn’t cried in 10 years.
Now let’s meet Charlie Lastra, “a bookish, brooding editor,” also from New York. Nora considers Charlie her “professional nemesis,” and you know they’re going to mix like oil and water. Their exchanges are snarky and entertaining. Their attraction is growing. But Charlie…
Is also complicated.
And Charlie – another diehard New Yorker – is, inexplicably, also in Sunshine Falls.
Will Nora and Charlie stop snarking and start kissing? Will Libby liberate herself from Nora’s well-intentioned but overdone helicoptering?
Will Nora cry?
And if so, why?
I didn’t like Henry’s last book, People We Meet on Vacation, and I was iffy about Book Lovers. I’m glad I took a chance and read the book, because this time around I enjoyed the story, the writing, the characters and changes they went through. And I enjoyed the surprises.
I liked another book.
I really liked it!