Count Your Lucky Stars by Alexandria Bellefleur
Published by Avon/William Morrow
Following Written in the Stars and Hang the Moon, Lambda Literary Award winner and national bestselling author Alexandria Bellefleur pens another steamy queer rom-com about former best friends who might be each other’s second chance at love…
Margot Cooper doesn’t do relationships. She tried and it blew up in her face, so she’ll stick with casual hookups, thank you very much. But now her entire crew has found “the one” and she’s beginning to feel like a fifth wheel. And then fate (the heartless bitch) intervenes. While touring a wedding venue with her engaged friends, Margot comes face-to-face with Olivia Grant—her childhood friend, her first love, her first… well, everything. It’s been ten years, but the moment they lock eyes, Margot’s cold, dead heart thumps in her chest.
Olivia must be hallucinating. In the decade since she last saw Margot, her life hasn’t gone exactly as planned. At almost thirty, she’s been married… and divorced. However, a wedding planner job in Seattle means a fresh start and a chance to follow her dreams. Never in a million years did she expect her important new client’s Best Woman would be the one that got away.
When a series of unfortunate events leaves Olivia without a place to stay, Margot offers up her spare room because she’s a Very Good Person. Obviously. It has nothing to do with the fact that Olivia is as beautiful as ever and the sparks between them still make Margot tingle. As they spend time in close quarters, Margot starts to question her no-strings stance. Olivia is everything she’s ever wanted, but Margot let her in once and it ended in disaster. Will history repeat itself or should she count her lucky stars that she gets a second chance with her first love?
Alexandria Bellefleur is one of my new favorites. Earlier this year, I first picked up Hang the Moon and very promptly realized I should have been reading Bellefleur from the start. Some romance authors are good at tension and some are great. It’s the difference between Lisa Kleypas and everyone else. That stretching a moment, making it seem like that hand touch and that searing look could burn a house down. Alexandria Bellefleur takes notes from the greats in the genre but completely makes her world distinctly Alexandria Bellefleur.
Her world is Seattle, cake tastings, ferris wheels, snow lodges, and romantic Hollywood classics. I’m in a romcom of funny real-life situations in a world reminding me of.bright colors, wonderful weather, and movie nights with friends.
I’ve always loved romance. It’s my comfort place, my de-stresser, and the place I enter when I want to reassure myself of happy healthy relationships. As a queer woman, it hasn’t actually been that long since the big publishers realized queer romances are worthy and needed. I want them along with every other HEA/HFN I read in this genre. I want those hate-to-love, enemies-to-lovers, historical rakes between LGBTQIA characters too. I don’t want to see those being exclusive to heterosexual people.
I want tension, grumpy/sunshine, horny cake tasting scenes between women (most excellent). Alexandria Bellefleur gives me such quality romances.
Margot and Olivia get a second chance at romance when Brendon and Annie hire a wedding planner for their celebrations. Margot hasn’t seen Olivia since their summer fling went down the drainpipe. That whole dynamic of a summer fling between two best friends already has me screaming but the fact that it’s sapphic (bi/pan)? Lay me to rest because the sapphics ruin me every time.
Secondary-characters in this one are so much fun for me. It’s expected that romance readers are going to see previous book couples in the companion novels. It’s a catnip we all love and appreciate. Pretty much a genre staple at this point. Brendan is a meddling mama bear as always. His role in life is convince everyone he loves and caress about that their perfect someone is out there. Brendan’s antics put a goofy grin on my face every time.
Olivia and Margot have that perfect gay disaster/found family vibe. If you love gays with cats, messy situations, and ‘the way you look at me i burn i pine’ in your romance? Absolutely pre-order.
Alexandria Bellefleur gifted the pastel romantic gays with Count Your Lucky Stars. Highly recommended.
Thank you to Avon/William Morrow for an e-arc for review.