Alexa Martin (Mom Jeans and Other Mistakes; Snapped; Blitzed) brings readers a charmingly bookish novel in Better than Fiction. Fans of Jasmine Guillory or Talia Hibbert are sure to love this contemporary romance with an endearingly awkward Black main character. Drew Young--named for her terrible father, Andrew--was mostly raised by her beloved grandmother, who ran Denver's Book Nook for years. After her grandmother's death, Drew inherits the store, but as a non-reader, Drew struggles--until two things happen. First, Andrew Young shows up, trying to steal the store from her, claiming Drew unduly influenced his mother. Then bestselling author Jasper Williams visits the store for a signing and is horrified when Drew admits she doesn't like reading.
In Denver to do research on his new book, Jasper makes Drew a deal: if she'll read the booklist he curates for her, he will do all the daring, outdoorsy things she loves and he dislikes. Drew agrees. She's itching to get back out in the wild and continue her nature photography, which she's put on hold since taking over the Book Nook. And, she decides, if she's going to keep her father away from the bookstore, she needs to secure all the bookish knowledge she can.
Gently paced and funny, with a vivid Colorado setting, Better than Fiction is a sweet look at finding love again after a huge loss. The bookstore setting--and the feisty elderly book club that meets there--is a delight, and readers will love how Jasper's and Drew's opposite interests draw them together. --Jessica Howard, freelance book reviewer