A huge thanks to Dave and crew over at #TheWriteReads for organising one mammoth book tour and to Olivia Lara, Aria Fiction and Netgalley for a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
What if the Lift driver who finds your cheating boyfriend’s phone holds the directions to true love?
‘Who are you and why do you have my boyfriend’s phone?’
‘He left it in my car. You must be the blonde in the red dress? I’m the Lift driver who dropped you two off earlier.’
And with these words, the life of the brunette and t-shirt wearing Maya Maas is turned upside down. Having planned to surprise her boyfriend, she finds herself single and stranded in an unknown city on her birthday.
So when the mystery driver rescues Maya with the suggestion that she cheers herself up at a nearby beach town, she jumps at the chance to get things back on track. She wasn’t expecting a personalised itinerary or the easy companionship that comes from opening up to a stranger via text, let alone the possibility it might grow into something more…
Come on this 5* journey to love, laughter and back again, perfect for fans of Mhairi McFarlane, Josie Silver and Sally Thorne.
Publisher: Aria Fiction
Length: 368 Pages
Publishing: 2nd September 2021
This is such a cute and clever romantic novel and it just gave me all the feels. It’s perfect for an escape to somewhere warm and fluffy (both the physical location and the vibes) and has such a feelgood factor.
Maya loses her job and boyfriend on the same day but a phone call, a Lyft driver and some interesting outcomes set the scene for a perfect romance plot and a wonderful adventure for Maya. A mysterious Lyft driver (known as Max) calls her to track down the owner of a phone (her ex-boyfriend’s) and they strike up a conversation which ends in him recommending she takes a little trip to Carmel by the Sea where she develops new relationships and potentially a new love interest who she has never met or knows very little personal information about. It has a very ‘Sleepless in Seattle’ trope to it.
I love the originality of how Maya meets the Lyft driver and how their relationship is developed through texts. It’s such a quirky idea and it worked so well. Maya is a sweet character and I love how she people watches and turns them into love stories. I love how much she loves the notion of happy ever afters and true love.
Carmel by the Sea is amazing. Once I found it really existed I looked up lots of photographs and it is stunning and perfectly brought to life in the novel . At first glance it has an English charm about it and is idyllic. I’m also a sucker for novels where there is a small community who take care of the main characters and this is certainly a big part of Maya’s adventure.
I adored everything about this book (and I apologise for overusing the word love in my review) and am completely smitten by Maya, Max, Carmel and its inhabitants. The perfect escape.
Author Bio – Olivia Lara
As a child, Olivia not-so-quietly ‘observed’ (AKA bothered with countless questions) her grandfather — who worked for the biggest publishing house in Romania — edit hundreds of books. And when he wasn’t editing, he read. Everything, all the time. Just like her father, who wrote short sci-fi stories, and was set on building the largest library she’d ever seen and her mother who’s never found without a book…wherever she goes. Her love for words came naturally, and after studying marketing, communications & photography, Olivia worked as a journalist for a newspaper and news television network in Romania.
An unapologetic citizen of the world, she spent a few years in Greece, Sweden, France, before settling in sunny California with her photographer husband and young daughter, where she works in marketing and writes. Oh, and let’s not forget the ever-growing menagerie that completes the family: Pumpkin, the Maine Coon mix, three black cats and a siamese kitten.
When she’s not writing or thinking about writing, she reads (across genres), watches old movies and collects vintage books, vinyl records, and eerie paintings. She loves traveling (and can’t wait until she can do it again, safely), swimming, biking, hiking and of course, photography.
SOMEDAY IN PARIS, her debut, published by Aria Fiction/Head of Zeus in May 2020 became a B&N, Apple, Kobo and Amazon Top 100 Bestseller and was shortlisted for the Romantic Novel Awards 2021. Her second novel, THE MEETING POINT, a contemporary romcom set in Northern California, is set to be published as an e-book on September 2, 2021 and in paperback in December 2021 in the UK and March, 2022 in the US. Keep up with Olivia: twitter || instagram || facebook