Emma of 83rd Street

Gallery. May 2023. 384p. ISBN 9781668008393. pap. $17.99. CONTEMPORARY ROMANCE
DEBUT Emma Woodhouse and George Knightley have been friends since childhood—their tony Upper East Side homes neighboring each other. Now they’re both grown up, with Emma starting grad school at NYU, and George freshly returned from LA to work for a private-equity firm in New York City. As they navigate their exclusive social circle full of glam parties, marriages, pregnancies, friendships new and old, breakups, and dates gone wrong, they get to spend plenty of time together and find that it’s increasingly difficult to deny their growing feelings for each other. They hesitate to take it further, fearing losing their friendship if their relationship ends badly, but they’ll have to trust their instincts and their chemistry to claim their chance at true love. Bellezza and Harding have created a glamorous romp that is heartfelt, steamy, and romantic.
VERDICT This modern retelling of Jane Austen’s Emma takes readers from Regency England to present-day high-society Manhattan, but the relationship foibles and romantic misunderstanding remain intact. For fans of the movie Clueless and retellings of classics.
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