Review: The Good Ones by Jenn McKinlay

Posted February 15, 2019 by Nima in Contemporary Romance, Rating B, Reviews Tags: , , ,

The Good Ones
Jenn McKinlay
Reviewer: Nima
Rating: B-

What I’m Talking About:

The Good Ones is cute, but it’s definitely “fantasy.” I lost count of the number of times I rolled my eyes over the things which I had to suspend my disbelief.  Maisy Kelly, accomplished professor of English literature in North Carolina, does not achieve tenure after her married, conniving boyfriend does an end run around her for the job.  She tucks her tail between her legs and takes refuge in the huge Victorian house left to her by a beloved aunt.  The house came with Aunt Eloise’s romance book collection.  Now think of an episode of Hoarders.

If you can forget about the fact that someone who reads three or four books a day, would let her 100-plus year old home fall into total disrepair, then you can accept it will only be eight to twelve weeks to get this home ready to become a romance bookstore—with a turret.  That’s right, a bookstore that exclusively sells romance novels.  Given the current state of brick and mortar bookstores, I had trouble setting aside my incredulity over this one.  And who is her architect-slash-contractor?  Why a hunky cowboy from Texas, Ryder Copeland, who looks like he walked off the cover of a romance novel!  

Maisy just happens to have best friends who are a marketing guru, an accountant, and a vet—for the abandoned kitten that shows up on Maisy’s front porch. Isn’t that convenient? They love Maisy and are so excited about her project, they don’t even charge her for their services.  McKinlay is so excited by the self-indulgent fantasy she’s created that she drops the names of her favorite romance authors while Maisy is sorting the hoard in preparation of the opening.  The second book in the series will likely follow Maisy’s best friend hooking up with Ryder’s best friend, both introduced in this first book in the Happily Ever After series—the name of Maisy’s bookstore.

The saving grace of this farce of a set-up is Maisy’s enthusiasm.  For all my doubts about the future viability of her bookstore, I want her to be successful.  I want her to be happy with Ryder and his daughter. I love the secret society they establish to do good deeds. I like to think that enough people still love paper books that they will want Aunt El’s used romance books.  I get it.  I know that most new books don’t even make it to print anymore, they go straight to e-book and audio.  Some will get a small paperback run.  Only really well-established authors seem earn hardbacks.  Especially with romance novels, there’s no cover to hide with electronic format.  This Good Ones is only problematic if you let it be.  If you just want a fantasy where all the variables are conveniently handled, this is your low-stress happy read.

My Rating: B- Liked It, but I had a few small issues

About the Book:

Ryder Copeland is an accomplished architect and one heck of a father…not to mention tall and sexy. He’s everything a hero should be, and Lord knows, Maisy Kelly has read enough of her great-aunt Eloise’s romance novels to recognize one when she sees one. But like all fairy tales, Maisy can’t help but wonder if this Prince Charming is too good to be true…

Ryder is drawn to the shy, curly haired professor who hires him to convert the Victorian house she’s inherited from her aunt into a romance bookstore. Attracted to a woman for the first time since his divorce, Ryder finds himself wishing for a future with Maisy that he knows is impossible. Ryder has never wavered from his plan to leave the small town of Fairdale, North Carolina, so he can give his daughter the life she deserves. But suddenly he’s not so sure. And the closer he gets to Maisy, the harder it’s going to be to walk away…

Release Date: February 5, 2019
Happily Ever After #1
Contemporary Romance
paperback (336 pages), e-book, audiobook
Book Source: NetGalley/Publisher

Purchase Info: