A satisfying, engaging read though lacking Wiggs' typical effortlessness and buoyancy.

THE BEEKEEPER'S BALL

When writer Cormac "Mac" O’Neill comes to Bella Vista, Isabel Johansen struggles with her distracting attraction to him while she's planning her sister’s wedding and preparing to open a destination cooking school.

After nearly losing Bella Vista, the family’s idyllic hacienda-style home, and discovering a pile of family secrets—including Tess, a half sister she never knew about who wound up saving the estate—Isabel finally has the resources and support to pursue her dream of opening a cooking school. Completely updating her home to house the school and an elegant events venue, she and Tess have decided to launch the space with Tess’ wedding. It’s a busy summer, made even more complicated by the arrival of Mac, a nomadic writer hired to write their grandfather Magnus’ tragic and triumphant story, which includes his work in the Danish resistance during World War II. Mix in a young, pregnant beekeeper and an arrogant celebrity chef with whom Isabel shares a dark past, and the book has many satisfying elements, as well as the enchanting setting of Bella Vista, which “lived and breathed with the essence of life.” This novel is best-selling author Wiggs' follows-up to The Apple Orchard (2013), which told Tess' story, and though it's compelling, it never achieves the same level of pitch-perfect authenticity. Isabel remains a domestic goddess, but her reasons for not letting Mac in for most of the book become less understandable the longer she fervently hangs on to them, and her abrupt about-faces in the book's last scenes on so many aspects of her life make us wonder why they weren't so obvious much sooner.

A satisfying, engaging read though lacking Wiggs' typical effortlessness and buoyancy.

Pub Date: June 24, 2014

ISBN: 978-0-7783-1448-6

Page Count: 400

Publisher: Harlequin MIRA

Review Posted Online: June 15, 2014

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1, 2014

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With frank language and patient plotting, this gangly teen crush grows into a confident adult love affair.

LOVE AND OTHER WORDS

Eleven years ago, he broke her heart. But he doesn’t know why she never forgave him.

Toggling between past and present, two love stories unfold simultaneously. In the first, Macy Sorensen meets and falls in love with the boy next door, Elliot Petropoulos, in the closet of her dad’s vacation home, where they hide out to discuss their favorite books. In the second, Macy is working as a doctor and engaged to a single father, and she hasn’t spoken to Elliot since their breakup. But a chance encounter forces her to confront the truth: what happened to make Macy stop speaking to Elliot? Ultimately, they’re separated not by time or physical remoteness but by emotional distance—Elliot and Macy always kept their relationship casual because they went to different schools. And as a teen, Macy has more to worry about than which girl Elliot is taking to the prom. After losing her mother at a young age, Macy is navigating her teenage years without a female role model, relying on the time-stamped notes her mother left in her father’s care for guidance. In the present day, Macy’s father is dead as well. She throws herself into her work and rarely comes up for air, not even to plan her upcoming wedding. Since Macy is still living with her fiance while grappling with her feelings for Elliot, the flashbacks offer steamy moments, tender revelations, and sweetly awkward confessions while Macy makes peace with her past and decides her future.

With frank language and patient plotting, this gangly teen crush grows into a confident adult love affair.

Pub Date: April 10, 2018

ISBN: 978-1-5011-2801-1

Page Count: 416

Publisher: Gallery Books/Simon & Schuster

Review Posted Online: Jan. 23, 2018

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 1, 2018

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Heartfelt and funny, this enemies-to-lovers romance shows that the best things in life are all-inclusive and nontransferable...

THE UNHONEYMOONERS

An unlucky woman finally gets lucky in love on an all-expenses-paid trip to Hawaii.

From getting her hand stuck in a claw machine at age 6 to losing her job, Olive Torres has never felt that luck was on her side. But her fortune changes when she scores a free vacation after her identical twin sister and new brother-in-law get food poisoning at their wedding buffet and are too sick to go on their honeymoon. The only catch is that she’ll have to share the honeymoon suite with her least favorite person—Ethan Thomas, the brother of the groom. To make matters worse, Olive’s new boss and Ethan’s ex-girlfriend show up in Hawaii, forcing them both to pretend to be newlyweds so they don’t blow their cover, as their all-inclusive vacation package is nontransferable and in her sister’s name. Plus, Ethan really wants to save face in front of his ex. The story is told almost exclusively from Olive’s point of view, filtering all communication through her cynical lens until Ethan can win her over (and finally have his say in the epilogue). To get to the happily-ever-after, Ethan doesn’t have to prove to Olive that he can be a better man, only that he was never the jerk she thought he was—for instance, when she thought he was judging her for eating cheese curds, maybe he was actually thinking of asking her out. Blending witty banter with healthy adult communication, the fake newlyweds have real chemistry as they talk it out over snorkeling trips, couples massages, and a few too many tropical drinks to get to the truth—that they’re crazy about each other.

Heartfelt and funny, this enemies-to-lovers romance shows that the best things in life are all-inclusive and nontransferable as well as free.

Pub Date: May 14, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-5011-2803-5

Page Count: 416

Publisher: Gallery Books/Simon & Schuster

Review Posted Online: March 3, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 15, 2019

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