Adult Assembly Required

Berkley. May 2022. 400p. ISBN 9780593198766. pap. $17. F
When Laura Costello moves from New York to Los Angeles for a fresh start after a serious car accident, she quickly finds herself homeless due to a fire. Lucky for her, she wanders into a bookstore and befriends the co-owners, who know a perfect place for her to stay. Laura is welcomed into a lovely boarding house by the friendly landlady and also meets Bob, a handsome gardener who likes watching baseball as much as she does. She also joins her new friends’ trivia team. While waiting for her grad school classes to begin, Laura’s new friends and potential love interest help her start to face her anxiety, PTSD, and strained relationships with her family and annoying ex-fiancé. Waxman’s (I Was Told It Would Get Easier) fifth novel is pleasant enough, but it plods along. The time Waxman spends on characters from previous novels detracts from Laura’s story, and although she has a talent for writing realistic and witty dialogue, there’s so much of it here that it can seem like filler.
VERDICT Not Waxman’s best effort, but fans of light romance with a bit of serious stuff mixed in might enjoy it.
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