Reading Roundup #74: The Magic of Second Chances

You have no idea how happy I am to announce that ALL OF MY BOOKS WERE GOOD THIS WEEK. Not all were perfect, but all were fun and satisfied various cravings for mystery, romance, and good old fashioned shenanigans. Our protagonists walk very different paths, but they’re all granted second chances in their search for happiness, whether that means reconnecting with an old love or rediscovering passion for their work — or both. And if you’re looking for a book with heart? Well, take your pick!

The Bachelor and the Bride (Dread Penny Society #4) by Sarah M. Eden: Eden has outdone herself this time, building on the foundation of previous books in the series to bring us more feels, more thrills, and a jaw-dropping conclusion that will leave you screaming for more. And much as I love, love, love the early books, I was not expecting that “HELL YES WHAT NEXT” reaction to this one. But even before the final act escalated and nearly gave me a heart attack or two, this was already my new favorite because Gemma and Barnabus? Perfection. The way they love and support each other is a thing of beauty, especially because they’ve been through so much and have so many obstacles, and I loved where their story went (and is still going). It will be a hard year, waiting for the next entry, but you’d better believe I’ll put the time to good use and reread all of the books for clues I missed the first time around. My thanks to NetGalley and Shadow Mountain Publishing for providing an eARC in exchange for an honest review.

The Magic of Lemon Drop Pie by Rachel Linden: Promise me a story about a lonely pie-maker searching for love and happiness, and I will hang upon your every word — especially if it’s told as beautifully as The Magic of Lemon Drop Pie. After putting her life and dreams aside to help raise her sister and run the family business when her mother died ten years ago, Lolly can’t find her way out of the regret and hopelessness that haunt her. But when a little magic lets her see what might have been, will she choose to keep living in the past or finally break free to embrace the future? An achingly tender exploration of how our choices shape not just our lives but our very souls, The Magic of Lemon Drop Pie weaves a spell of enduring love and second chances. Recommended to fans of Waitress and Pushing Daisies. My thanks to NetGalley and Berkley for providing an eARC in exchange for an honest review.

The Decoy Girlfriend by Lillie Vale: A frothy, sparkly combination of laugh-out-loud funny and oh-my-heart emotional, The Decoy Girlfriend is an almost-perfect romcom that unfortunately stumbles with an unnecessary last-act break-up. And when I mean unnecessary, I do mean it. It was handled quickly and didn’t kill my love for the rest of the book, which is such a delight, truly — but I couldn’t enjoy the last two chapters and the reconciliation as much because I was busy scratching my head. Still, I’m very willing to believe that’s just a “me” thing. And I had enough fun that I’ll definitely still look forward to Vale’s next book. Maybe she’ll make it up to me with Mandi’s story? Because we didn’t get nearly enough of that fabulous woman. A gal can dream! My thanks to NetGalley and Penguin Group Putnam’s for providing an eARC in exchange for an honest review.

I hope you’re all enjoying your reading week and finding plenty of good things to think (and feel) about. Until next time, take care!

—b

5 thoughts on “Reading Roundup #74: The Magic of Second Chances

  1. Love the new blog look, Becca! I’ve had Lemon Drop Pie on my radar for a little while now after seeing a few mixed reviews but you’ve absolutely sold me on it! It sounds so full of heart and like an amazing read. I’ve got Decoy Girlfriend on my TBR this month and I actually haven’t seen reviews for it yet but I’m liking what you’ve said about it. It sounds super fun and feel-good read 😊

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you! ☺️ I can see how Lemon Drop Pie wouldn’t work for everyone, but it hit all the right notes for me. Keep the tissues handy! Decoy Girlfriend is on the other end of the spectrum — just giggles and grins all over the place. 🙂

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