Cover Image: Love Lettering

Love Lettering

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Member Reviews

I absolutely adore all of Kate Claybourn's writing, and this love story is no different. It's a long slow burn between two people trying to find their way to each other by discovering their true selves. I can't say enough positive things about it!
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I had such a hard time getting into this story for some reason - it just wasn’t grabbing my attention. Once it did, however, I couldn’t put it down  and end up really enjoying it.
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Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for providing me with an e-arc in exchange for an honest review. Since I'm so behind on reviews I ended up listening to the published audiobook from my library and this review will be of that version.

I'm honestly not sure where to start with this one which I suppose is how I start most reviews. Going in to this I thought I would moderately enjoy it and give it 3-4 stars. Instead, it grew on me so so much that by the end it was a 5 star book. I adored so much about this book and hopefully I can put some of it into words here.

Fully developed characters, romance, intimacy, making me cry, can't get it out of your head, it had it all!

I adored the characters and the voice acting of Nicol Zanzarella immensely. She really brought Meg and Reed and everyone else to life. The character development was amazing in this one. They came across as such real living people that I'd definitely love to know in real life. I'm not usually one for book boyfriends, but I'd take a chance on Reed. 

I don't even usually read contemporary romance, but this one is such a 'wow' book. The romance was slow burn in the best way possible and the emotional intimacy was so all encompassing, you truly felt it with them. I would also say that this novel had one of the best sex scenes of the romance novels I've read. And I've read a lot of them. You could truly  feel  the emotional intimacy through the words and pages. 

The cadence of the writing and narration keep you entranced and I had a very hard time when I needed to stop reading actually turning it off. The whole text flows seamlessly and if I'd had the time, I could see this being a book you just read in one sitting. 

The ending felt so good (and I cried, of course) and yet I'd love to revisit these characters and their lives in the future. It would feel like coming home to old friends.
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Lush writing is something I've looked forward to from Kate Clayborn and Love Lettering is no exception. It's descriptive can get a bit too much at times but the intricate relationships and motivations she wove with these characters made it all worth it.
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Oh, so charming and sweet! This romance will really pull on the heartstrings and reel you in. It was beautiful to read.
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I was really going to put this book down multiple times, but for some reason I stuck with it. Kind of glad I did. I really enjoyed the romance between Reid and Meg. It was quirky, hot and most of all real. Not sure I needed all the mystical lettering stuff, and I am some one who craves and enjoys the mystical. The friendship sub plots gave the book a bit more umpf for me and kept me reading. Overall, this was a slow read for me and I was left wanting a bit more speed.
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I was apprehensive going in to this book because I had heard so many wonderful things about it.  I think that either the book was hyped too much or recent events had me in a mood because, while I liked the book, I didn't see the fuss being made.  That's not 100% fair to the author and this is by no means a bad review.  I enjoyed Meg and Reid's strangers to friends to lovers story as well as Meg really getting to know who she is but I was a little taken a back by the b sub plot with Sibby and Meg.  On the one hand, I loved that Sibby was there for Meg when she really needed her but the little we see of her prior to this makes Sibby kind of an unlikable character.  It was a cute three star read that definitely distracted me from the real world and I love the love letter it was to NYC.  It was a good read, just not a great one for me.

Many thanks to the publisher and NetGalley for an advance copy.
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I have mixed feelings about this book. The first part was so incredibly slow I almost stopped reading (and I never quit on books), but the last third was incredibly good. I loved how everything came together at the end, and it was so unique. I couldn't believe it when I saw how short it was, though, because while I was reading I thought it was over 400 pages.
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I never start a first-person-narrated romance with any confidence that I will enjoy it. I’m old-ish and old-fashioned and with the exception of Jane Eyre want my romances to be thirdly-centred. While I didn’t love Clayborn’s mannered “Chance of a Lifetime” series, I did enjoy it and thought her a thoughtful romance writer, trying too-hard to bring a self-conscious emotional complexity to the romance novel (while not sacrificing the HEA). Like the third-person, I prefer a more definitive HEA, but I wasn’t dissatisfied with Love Lettering‘s ending, thanks to its nod to Austen’s Persuasion.

As a non-fan of planners and pens and gel-vs-ink aficionados, I wasn’t keen on Love Lettering‘s premise: calligraphic heroine Meg Mackworth, with some kind of vague woo-woo sense, weaves the word M-I-S-T-A-K-E into hero Reid Sutherland’s wedding program. One year and a broken engagement later, Reid appears at Meg’s sometimes-paperie-employer, Cecelia’s, with an accusatory tone and the said wedding program. As a genius-IQ, Wall Street quantitative analyst, Reid sure can read a pattern where others might not and he wants to know how Meg knew his engagement would end.  

What ensued was confusing to me: I think Meg, who has made QUITE a name for herself thanks to the originality of her work, is creatively blocked at a crucial moment in her career: an upcoming pitch to a national planner-and-paper company. In conversation with Reid, who turns out to hate NYC as much as Meg loves it, Meg asks Reid to join her in an exploration of NYC-signage in an attempt to unblock her creativity and unhate his NYC-hates-it. Reid agrees and they embark on a courtship of sorts, exploring NYC on foot, meeting in different neighbourhoods, making sustenance stops at small, inexpensive, but delicious neighbourhood eateries.

I was never really sure why Meg proposed this scheme, or why Reid agreed, but I did enjoy their journeying. Once the unlikely, vague premise was set up, I thought Clayborn created a wonderful balance of engaging setting, a peripatetic movement to her narrative that echoed its perfect pacing, coupled with hey, one of my faves in romance, food descriptions, and a see-saw of banter-attraction and genuinely serious conversation between hero and heroine. Clayborn also gave Meg an inner voice that was funny at times; at others, insecure and frightened, yet never made her less than likeable. Add potent physical attraction and the alternating of hero-heroine-heroine’s-inner-voice was engaging and delightful.

The novel’s rhythm of texting, meeting, talking, observing, playing word and signage games, sometimes breaking into a fight (especially because Love Lettering is an opposites-attract romance) lulled me into a this-is-a-quiet-psychological-romance state. Then, Clayborn saved the best for last and ratcheted the tension to sky-high with a dramatic last quarter, without a Big Mis, or a terrible emotionally-wrenching rift between hero and heroine. Above all, one of the most wonderful things about Clayborn’s romance is that its main theme is care: care for the other, and friends play as great a part in the heroine’s well-being as does a lover-boyfriend, care for oneself, care with what one brings to one’s work.

If Love Lettering ends with a Persuasion-homage, it opens with Pride and Prejudice. Reid is pissed off and stiff; Meg is cringy embarrassed and blubbery out-there, also judgy-judgy. Like my beloved P & P, Meg is FUNNY at first-sight of Reid (and she remembers him with this fiancée, Avery, quite vividly too):

Last year, he’d been wearing what other people call “business casual” and what I’d privately call “weekend-stick-up-your-ass”: tan chinos pressed so sharply they’d looked starched, white collared shirt under a slim cut, expensive-looking navyblue V-neck sweater.

“Maybe, I think, his life is pretty different now, too. But then he says, “Good evening,” which I guess means he’s still got the stick up his ass. Who says Good evening? Your grandad, that’s who.

“Of course in the face of a human-shaped piece of granite I find myself struggling to muster the cheerful informality that’s always made me such a hit in here, that had lifted my low spirits throughout today’s shift. Ridiculously, I can only think of phrases that seem straight out of Jane Austen. Are you in need of assistance, sir? What do you require this evening? Which of our parchment-like wares appeals most to you?

Reid may be stiff, slow-to-smile, and excessively-polite, but he’s also kind, caring, honest, and moral. Meg may be blurting-my-feelings out there, but she too has emotional wounds to hide and has to learn to be honest about what she needs. (Reid’s direct honesty helps with that.) And the delight of the novel? How Meg peels away Reid’s stiff-chino layers, hubba to the love scenes too, to find the man worthy of her love and loyalty as he is of her open heart and humour. This is only a tiny sampling of all the ways Love Lettering won me over and will remain as one of the best romances I’ve read this year. With Miss Austen, who appreciates all the nods, we say Love Lettering is proof “there is no charm equal to tenderness of heart,” Emma.

Kate Clayborn’s Love Lettering is published by Kensington Books. It was released in December 2019 and may be found at your preferred vendor. I received an e-galley from Kensington Books, via Netgalley.
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This is a really different romance story. It has a uniqueness that is wonderful.  Its not your typical "meet cute". I love when authors can find a new and interesting way to tell romance. It was a really refreshing and enjoyable story. It was extremely descriptive which I could see being a turn off for some but I enjoyed it. Meg and Reid are brought together in such a interesting way. Once you start this book you will spend all day or night finishing it! You will be dying to know what happens because that is exactly what happened with me!
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Love Lettering is a light, whimsical read about Meg, who has built her own hand lettering business. She hid a message in a clients wedding program and months later the groom, Reid, shows up to confront her about it. Reid is good at math and numbers, making him Meg’s opposite, but does this also make him her perfect match? They become friends as Reid helps Meg work through a creative block she’s having and Meg helps Reid start to like New York. There is a pretty big plot twist towards the end of the book that I didn’t see coming.

I love that the author created unique characters that you don’t find in every book. There was a great subplot about friendship, and I loved Meg’s relationships with both Sibby and Lark. Overall this book might be cheesy for some with all the “signs” and lettering talk, but I found it charming. This is a fresh take on a cute contemporary romantic novel. 

Thank you to Kensington Publishing via NetGalley for a copy of this book to review!
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I love this Love Lettering! I love the Brooklyn setting, the wedding, and the secret lettering into the wedding program. I thought this was a very fun, very light book perfect for the beach or a weekend.
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When a book can hold your attention, you know it is a good one. Love Lettering was absolutely a beautiful and lovely story. The chemistry between Meg and Reid was absolutely perfect. I have been RAVING about this book to everyone. I love when romances have a blend of a sweet story and real life conflict. This story was so unique and compelling.  Easily a 5 star read and one of my favorites of the year!

Have you ever been in a book slump? What was your #bookslumpbuster? I would love to see! Love Lettering by @kateclayborn.author finally busted me out of my month long slump! Thank you @netgalley and @kensingtonbooks for gifting me a copy of this book. Pictured here is my library copy. .
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Swoonsh! (If you know, you know!) This book was so sweet! I’m a huge fan of books with a good slow burn, and this one was totally worth the wait. The chemistry between Meg and Reid was electric. I was literally moved to tears a couple times while reading this because of how earnest they were and how sweetly their relationship unfolded. But don’t be fooled. While this book is sweet, there’s also some decently 🔥🔥🔥 open door descriptions. This book gave me all the 90s movie and You’ve Got Mail feels. I found this book to be a perfect read for the current situation we all find ourselves in. It was the perfect blend of escapism, hope, and real life. I highly recommend this one!!!
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I adored reading Meg and Reid's story! I loved the slow build of their friendship and later their relationship. I also really enjoyed the light 'mystery' elements. This made my heart happy. Beautifully emotional.
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I adored this book. 

-- Meg and Reid are so lovely and charming together, with a hint of "omg these idiots."

-- I loved learning about handlettering and seeing more into that craft. It was new and fun and now I appreciate hand lettered things in a richer way.

-- The relationship between Meg and Sibby was wonderful to explore on the page. Breaking up with a friend is so hard and so germane to women in their twenties. I did it. Every woman I know did it.

-- I loved the way that NYC was such a vibrant location -- almost a "character" itself, as they say. I don't know New York well, and it was so wonderful to explore it.
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Thank you Netgalley for the chance to read and review this title. I will review this title at a different date.
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This book was ok. I felt like I could relate to the characters but some parts were a bit too over-romanticized for me, I was picturing her walking down the streets of New York with letters of different fonts floating over her head!
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I was pleasantly surprised by this cute story. I was expecting a Hallmark type love story but it is Hallmark meets Lifetime movie plot twist. Just the type of story I need during these crazy times.

Special thank you to Kensington Books and Netgallery for the ARC.
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I thought I was going to really enjoy this book, but I sadly did not. I had a hard time getting into this book. I didn't really care about the characters at all.
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A slow burner but a sweet romance. I really enjoyed this book and it’s originality, The characters are realistic and realistically flawed. Well written. I would read another book by this author.
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