The Stage Kiss

Alcove. Dec. 2023. 336p. ISBN 9781639105847. pap. $18.99. CONTEMPORARY ROMANCE
DEBUT A modern day Lizzie and Darcy take center stage—literally—in Jones’s meta Pride and Prejudice retelling. Actress Eden Blake, previously the star of embarrassing commercials, is excited to be promoted from understudy to the role of Elizabeth Bennett in a touring production of a Pride and Prejudice musical. The problem? She has to star opposite snobby Broadway star Brennon Thorne. The dislike between the pair is palpable at first, but as they spend time together and kiss on stage every night, their chemistry begins to grow. This is a slow-burn story, with Eden fighting hard against her growing attraction, and Brennon screwing things up at every turn. When their smoldering attraction finally ignites, it causes even more drama that the pair have to work through. Friends and castmates of Eden and Brennon cleverly fulfill several of the classic Pride and Prejudice roles, and Jones ensures that their relationships with the main characters shine a spotlight on the satisfying central romance.
VERDICT This inspired rom-com take on Jane Austen sparkles, with its unique setting and well-interpreted characters.
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