Contemporary Pop Fiction Previews, May 2022, Pt. 3 | Prepub Alert

For summer reading and beyond. 

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Mallery, Susan. The Boardwalk Bookshop. Mira: Harlequin. May 2022. 384p. ISBN 9780778333296. $28.99; pap. ISBN 9780778386087. $16.99. CONTEMPORARY

Thayer, Nancy. Summer Love. Ballantine. May 2022. 320p. ISBN 9780593358429. $28. CD. CONTEMPORARY

Waxman, Abbi. Adult Assembly Required. Berkley. May 2022. 400p. ISBN 9780593198766. pap. $17. CONTEMPORARY

In Mallery’s latest, bookshop owner Bree, giftshop owner Mikki, and muffin purveyor Ashley join forces to open The Boardwalk Bookshop on the California coast, relying on one another as they wrestle with the possibilities of love. In Thayer’s Summer Love, old secrets will out when four friends hold a 30-year reunion on Nantucket, even as their adult children pursue surprising interests. In Adult Assembly Required, Laura Costello moves to Los Angeles to avoid bad memories and an overprotective family, but her life remains topsy-turvy, and she must rely on friends who include the title character of Waxman’s USA TODAY best-selling The Bookish Life of Nina Hill.


Jonasson, Jonas. Sweet, Sweet Revenge LTD. HarperVia. May 2022. 304p. ISBN 9780063072152. $27.99. CONTEMPORARY

Runde, Katie. The Shore. Scribner. May 2022. 304p. ISBN 9781982180171. $26. CONTEMPORARY

Straub, Emma. This Time Tomorrow. Riverhead. May 2022. 320p. ISBN 9780525539001. $28. lrg. prnt. CD. CONTEMPORARY

Weiner, Jennifer. The Summer Place. Atria. May 2022. 416p. ISBN 9781501133572. $28. CD. CONTEMPORARY

Examining colonialism, art history, and greed, Jonasson’s Sweet, Sweet Revenge LTD brings together Maasai warrior Ole Mbatian Jr.; Kevin, the young man he calls his son: and trod-upon Agneta, who joins forces with Kevin against an underhanded gallery owner with the help of a Stockholm company specializing in revenge services (originally scheduled for July 2021; 60,000-copy first printing). Successful realtors serving tourists at The Shore, Brian and Margot Dunne face a different kind of summer in Runde’s debut; even as daughters Liz and Evy seek self-redefining experiences, the entire family struggles with the tragedy of Brian’s brain tumor (125,000-copy first printing). In Straub’s This Time Tomorrow, Alice is reasonably contented but wishes she were closer to her father, and she gets the chance at a remake when she wakes up one morning in 1996 as a 16-year-old. In Weiner's latest, when Veronica Levy bought The Summer Place on the Outer Cape, she imagined it staying in the family for generations. But with the family now dispersed, she gathers everyone together for one last blow-out summer until she sells it (350,000-copy first printing).


Andrews, Mary Kay. The Homewreckers. St. Martin’s. May 2022. 448p. ISBN 9781250278364. $28.99. CD. CONTEMPORARY

Caña, Natalie. A Proposal They Can’t Refuse. Mira: Harlequin. May 2022. 368p. ISBN 9780778386094. pap. $15.99. CONTEMPORARY

Colgan, Jenny. An Island Wedding. Avon. May 2022. 288p. ISBN 9780063243132. $27.99; pap. ISBN 9780063141889. $26.99. lrg. prnt. CONTEMPORARY

Foster, Lori. The Honeymoon Cottage. HQN. May 2022. 336p. ISBN 9781335427496. $28.99; pap. ISBN 9781335506368. $15.99. CONTEMPORARY

Lauren, Christina. Something Wilder. Gallery: S. & S. May 2022. 368p. ISBN 9781982173401. $26.99. CONTEMPORARY

Roberts, Nora. Nightwork. St. Martin’s. May 2022. 448p. ISBN 9781250278197. $29.99. CD. CONTEMPORARY

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In Andrews’s latest, widowed Hattie Kavanaugh has a chance to rescue her business by appearing in a beach-house renovation reality show called The Homewreckers, competing with a male lead who could be a new love interest—or her worst competitor ever (300,000-copy first printing). In debuter Caña’s A Proposal They Can’t Refuse, Kamilah Vega wants to update her family’s Puerto Rican restaurant but can’t get permission from her ailing octogenarian grandfather unless she marries his best friend’s son, Irish American whiskey distiller Liam (75,000-copy first printing). In Colgan’s Island Wedding, Flora MacKenzie is planning a sweet, small wedding on the Scottish island of Mure when she learns that rich, gorgeous Olivia is returning home to Mure for her own extravaganza wedding—planned for the same day (100,000-copy paperback and 30,000-copy hardcover first printing). In Foster’s The Honeymoon Cottage, Jubil Long isn’t thrilled that the little sister he’s cared for since their parents’ deaths wants an out-of-the-way country wedding, but then he meets wedding planner Yardley Belanger, who wishes she could have her own wedding one day (75,000-copy paperback and 10,000-copy hardcover first printing). Lauren’s Something Wilder takes Lily Wilder to the Utah desert, where she uses her difficult treasure-hunting dad’s old maps to conduct staged hunts and encounters the one man from the past who always saw her as the love of his life (100,00-copy first printing). A thief since childhood, when he scrambled to support a mother dying of cancer, the ever-honorable Harry Booth feels he can’t follow up his feelings for Miranda Emerson—although maybe there’s hope if he disentangles himself from the Nightwork he’s been trapped into doing for bad-guy Carter LaPorte. This latest from Roberts has a million-copy first printing.


McCoy, Sarah. Mustique Island. Morrow. May 2022. 352p. ISBN 9780062984371. $27.99. CONTEMPORARY

Perched in the southern Caribbean and owned by oddball British playboy Colin Tennant, Mustique Island is designed as a hideaway for rich, privileged folks. It’s 1972, and divorcée Willy May Michael—a former Texas beauty queen—builds a house there, not so far from Princess Margaret. When she invites her adult daughters, they discover that Mustique isn’t all sun, fun, and glorious white sand. With a 75,000-copy first printing.

Williams, Beatriz & others. The Lost Summers of Newport. Morrow. May 2022. 352p. ISBN 9780063040748. $28.99. lrg. prnt. CONTEMPORARY

The producer of a popular reality TV show, Mansion Makeover, Andie Figuero takes over falling-apart Sprague Hall in Newport, RI, and is told by Lucia “Lucky” Sprague, the reclusive heiress still living there, that the boathouse is off-limits. As the time-layered narrative unfolds, we learn that in 1899, Ellen Daniels came to the estate to teach singing to Maybelle Sprague, the new owner’s stepsister, who’s to be married off to an Italian prince. Later, in 1958, Maybelle arrived home from Italy with daughter Lucky, who discovered a terrible secret in the boathouse that haunts her still. With a 50,000-copy first printing.

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Barbara Hoffert

Barbara Hoffert (, @BarbaraHoffert on Twitter) is Editor, LJ Prepub Alert; winner of ALA's Louis Shores Award for reviewing; and past president, awards chair, and treasurer of the National Book Critics Circle, which awarded her its inaugural Service Award in 2023.

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