Tuesday, 17 September 2019

Release Day Review: Love On Lexington Avenue by Lauren Layne

From New York Times bestselling author Lauren Layne comes the second delightfully charming installment in the Central Park Pact series, following a young widow whose newfound cynicism about love is challenged by a sexy, rough-around-the-edges contractor.
There’s never a bad time to fall in love in the city, right? Wrong. According to the recently-widowed Claire Hayes, it’s very, very wrong. In fact, after finding out her late husband was a liar and a cheat, Claire’s convinced there’s never a good time for romantic notions. Determined to rid her home of anything that reminds her of her philandering husband, Claire sets out to redesign her entire Upper East Side brownstone and make it her own. But when she meets gruff and often-cantankerous contractor Scott Turner and realizes not all men are scumbags, Claire must decide if she’s ready to risk her heart again.
Scott needs a change of pace from the corporate offices and swanky hotels he’s been building lately, and bluntly makes it clear to Claire that he only took on her house for that reason, adding that he has no patience for a pampered, damaged princess on his job site. But when long work days soon turn into even longer nights, their mutual wariness morphs into something more complicated—a grudging respect, and maybe even attraction…? Scott knows he’s not one to settle down, but then why can’t he bring himself to put the finishing touches on Claire’s house and move on to the next job?
Filled with laugh-out-loud scenes that blend perfectly with the touching friendships Layne brings to life on the page, this “hugely entertaining” (USA TODAY) novel is perfect for fans of Lauren Weisberger.

What's the perfect way to rid yourself of the memory of a cheating, dead husband? The answer is to remodel the house you shared with the philanderer, well, that's what Claire Hayes thinks. Only, the process is much tougher than she thought and the person she's employed to do the job isn't the easiest male to handle, or is he? 

Bored with building corporate properties, Scott Turner decides to follow up a lead given to him by his friend to remodel a house. However, the property is a dump and he knows he should walk away from the contract, only the sharp-tongued owner has piqued his interest more than the job. 

Geared up to focus on a romance, the narrative deviates to highlights Claire's struggles to rid herself of the memory of her late husband whilst getting her life back on track a year after his double life and lies surfaced. Scott is an unlikely candidate for a woman who seems to have a 'judge a book by its cover' attitude. So as opposites, I enjoyed the challenging interactions between the protagonists as they slowly meander from hostile to friendly territory and respect. 

I appreciated the change of pace with this novel, but for die-hard fans of Ms Layne, there's a great deal of quick-witted dialogue and laughable humour injected within the narrative. Equally, there's lots of glamour and gossip in ample supply from the secondary characters as well get titbits of news about them and clues about what lies in store for Manhattan-based Claire, Naomi and Audrey. 

It's standalone, but if you haven't read Passion on Park Avenue, you'll definitely appreciate getting to know Naomi and specifically, Oliver more. Now, I'm eagerly looking forward to Audrey and Clarke's story in the final book of this trilogy; Marriage on Madison Avenue.

***arc generously received courtesy of Gallery Books via NetGalley***

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