Hello, First name / my friend!
It's been a minute since I announced my next release will be Shucked, a brother's best friend rom-com set in Friendship, Rhode Island and will arrive some time this summer. Thank you so much for all the love and excitement! I can't wait to share the cover and synopsis with you very soon! 
What I have to share: One of my oldest author friends, Kennedy Ryan, spearheads the annual LIFT4Autism auction which always features some of the most amazing goodies the book world has to offer--and she does this on top of writing unbelievably good books and signing TV deals and generally being one of the most kind-hearted people in the world. This year, I'm offering a signed, personalized, and annotated-by-me copy of In a Jam It's such an important cause. I hope you'll check out the auction catalog. All bids close Friday, April 28 at 5 p.m. EST. 
What I'm reading: I'm still deep into my audio book odyssey with Abby Jimenez. Since standard series or agreed upon reading order isn't something I prioritize when I choose books, I meandered through Abby Jimenez's titles in non-linear fashion. All of these titles have some pretty heavy content in them and I have to be in the right ~*place*~ to experience that kind of content. Also, there are times when I see a video on TikTok with one sentence from a book and decide I have to read it immediately, regardless of series placement. 
And maybe it's just me but I often feel like non-standard reading orders can be a lot like starting Dark Side of the Moon at the first roar of the MGM lion in Wizard of Oz. Just ask me about the order in which I think Lisa Kleypas's Wallflowers series should be read. Because it's a maze not unlike the one I'm about to describe to you.
My first read was Part of Your World--which I completely adored. Consider me hooked, Ms. Jimenez. And your little dogs too. It was exactly what I needed at that moment and I didn't commit too many crimes against reading order because it's a standalone/first in series. I don't usually say there are perfect books but this book was pretty close to perfect for me. The story braids itself together in such a gorgeous way.
As far as the purists are concerned, I fell off the wagon after that because I started The Happy Ever After Playlist, which is technically the second in the Friend Zone series though reads beautifully as a standalone. There's a side character in this book who is also a side character in Part of Your World, and seeing her origin here was really fascinating for me. This is an angsty read. It was intense. But it's also fun and funny and delightful.
I went on to Life's Too Short which--in my very gentle opinion--doesn't need to be tied to this series because it's nearly a perfect standalone. The male main character is briefly introduced in Playlist though not in any “must read in order to understand” kind of way. I'll add that I really, really worried about how we were going to get a happy ever after right up to the end but the epilogue (finally! in the epilogue!) did the thing that I needed it to do and I can confirm it's a very happy, very satisfying ending. 
Then--and I know this is going to make the reading order rule followers stare at the ceiling in exasperation--I went back and listened to the series starter, The Friend Zone.  Look, I had my reasons. It made sense to me. My head is already a seven-layer dip halfway through a party. Why would I take a straight line through anything? And--full transparency--I wasn't in the right ~*place*~ for a book that handled topics of infertility when I started this journey. Why I thought I was in the spot for the grief in Playlist and Short is unclear to me but brains tells us weird things all the time.
I have Yours Truly, Abby Jimenez's new release which features a character introduced in Part of Your World, waiting for me. I'll report back when I'm finished but considering I've gobbled up one Abby book after another in the past few months, I won't be surprised if I like this one too.
What I'm gifting you: an ebook copy of Daring the Player by Robin Covington. If you're new to Robin's books, you should know she brings the heat. This one is pro footballer/rock star with some age gap and neighbors-to-lovers.
I hope you're doing well, my friend!
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There are probably typos in here. In the bonus scenes too. It's a lot like that one daffodil bulb that sprouts nowhere near the spot in which it was planted. Curious but not much of a problem.
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