Reviews by Dabney Grinnan

F
The Perfect Date

The Perfect Date is the most frustrating reading experience I’ve had all year.  The heroine and her son are extremely engaging, but the hero is less than worthy of her most of the time, the plot is overly dramatic and the gobs of girl hate that spatter the novel and a number of poor editorial cho ...

B
Desperate Measures

How to describe this book? If you took Katee Robert’s The O’Malley’s series and mixed it up with Aladdin and then added a few heaped spoonfuls of smut (and please know I say smut with the utmost positivity), you’d have Desperate Measures. The book is light on world-building and heavy on kink ...

A
Mrs. Everything

Jennifer Weiner is known for writing remarkably emotive books about women, their struggles, and their triumphs. In Mrs. Everything, she does this again, but in a much bigger, bolder way than before. Jo and Bethie Kaufman are sisters, growing up in 1950s Detroit and leading lives that are pretty a ...

B
Sisters of Summer's End

Sisters of Summer’s End is a decent little story about two women who take a leap into bigger and better things after a lifetime of insular attitudes.  While the book pulls focus on one of the romantic relationships fostered by one of our heroines, the best part of the story is their newfound frie ...

B+
The Spies of Shilling Lane

Jennifer Ryan’s lovely, gristly, involving mystery about a British matron who becomes an investigator in the wake of a humiliating divorce petition, The Spies of Shilling Lane is a surprisingly cozy mystery that’s presided over by a pushy heroine who’s a touch Miss Marple, a pinch Jessica Flet ...

B+
The Chai Factor

Given it’s set in the multicultural city of Toronto, it's no surprise that Farah Heron's début, The Chai Factor, delves into some serious issues such as racism and cultural and gender equality. Yet even so the author maintains some nice comedic flair and tells a sweet opposites attract romance ma ...

C-
Waisted

I'm always ready for a story with a strong revenge plot, so I was super excited to get my hands on a copy of Waisted, the latest novel from author Randy Susan Meyers. I dove in, eager to get lost in a story rife with revenge, but sadly, the novel didn't deliver quite what I was expecting. All her ...

B-
28 Dates

Caitlyn and Jonas have been friends with benefits for a couple of years now, but Jonas has fallen hard for Caitlyn and wants more. Caitlyn, however, is relationship adverse and thinks their arrangement is perfect. She has no intention of ever committing to anyone and wants things to just stay as the ...

B+
The Scholar

If you love novels by authors such as Tana French and Jane Harper, Dervla McTiernan's Cormac Reilly series is a definite must-read. The Scholar is the second installment in the series, and does not stand well on its own, so do yourself a favor and read The Ruin before diving in. The Scholar picks ...

C
City of Girls

In this brand-new love letter to New York City, the follies of youth and the joys of the theater, Eat Pray Love author Elizabeth Gilbert brings us the uneven story of a woman named Vivian Morris. Morris comes to New York for a summer vacation in 1940 and never really leaves – and tells us about it ...