Lease on Love

Putnam. Feb. 2022. 352p. ISBN 9780593419915. pap. $16. CONTEMPORARY ROMANCE
DEBUT A mix-up between a roommate app and a dating app leads to unexpected love and a fresh start in Ballard’s debut. When Sadie loses her job as a financial analyst after years of working overtime and stifling her colorful personality, she drunkenly swipes right on the wrong app, and finds herself trading in a midtown apartment for a Brooklyn brownstone with rent that’s too low to pass up. The brownstone’s owner, Jack, is young, rich, and a recluse, and Sadie sweeps into his life like a fresh breeze. As she reinvents her career and opens a florist shop, she also draws Jack into her circle of friends. He starts to open up to the world again, and eventually, to Sadie. However, their tentative romance is threatened by Sadie’s deep insecurity. This charming story of new beginnings and emotional growth has a sassy and likable narrator in Sadie, and the novel keeps a light tone despite touching on difficult subjects like toxic families and grief.
VERDICT Readers who enjoy female entrepreneurs, found family, and gentle romantic leads will enjoy.
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