The Wake-Up Call

Berkley. Sept. 2023. 368p. ISBN 9780593640128. pap. $17. CONTEMPORARY ROMANCE
The Forest Manor Hotel and Spa in England is on the verge of closing its distinguished doors after years of unavoidable setbacks. To save the charming hotel, everyone is going to have to pitch in and work together. That includes hotel receptionists Izzy Jenkins and Lucas da Silva, who, after a disastrous encounter at last year’s Christmas party, can’t stand each other. Amid this, Izzy leans fully into her task of returning a series of lost wedding rings to their owners, determined to bring joy to a holiday season that’s currently looking more frightful than fancy. Lucas is convinced that none of the schemes to save the hotel’s fate will work, but he loves it there enough to try, even if it means helping Izzy with her “Ring Thing” project. As Izzy and Lucas spend more time together, the feelings that each has shoved down since last Christmas begin to resurface, but they’ll have to navigate past hurts and unknown futures.
VERDICT O’Leary’s latest (after The No-Show) is full of heart, humor, and a sprinkle of holiday magic. While this will easily find a spot on holiday displays, it will also appeal to readers who love enemies-to-lovers storylines with supporting characters who shine.
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