A Novel Love Story by Ashley Poston is a small town, forced proximity romance for readers looking for a small supernatural element.

Sometimes, a book can change your life.

Disclosure: I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review. This post contains affiliate links. That means we receive a small commission at no cost to you from any purchases you make through these links.

A Novel Love Story by Ashley Poston

A Novel Love Story by Ashley Poston

June 25, 2024

Read this if you want:

  • Small town
  • Recluse/grumpy hero
  • Forced proximity
  • Magical realism

Grab this book on Amazon

Love— true love— always came back.

Eileen has had a rough few years. Her fiancé calls off their wedding, she feels like she’s going nowhere in her job, and now her closest friends – her romance book club – have bailed on their traditional week-long summer getaway to discuss all things romance. So Eileen makes the trip on her own, making the drive from Georgia up to rural New York state. Only Eileen doesn’t make it to their cabin, instead finding herself caught in the rain and in the very same (fictional) town her favorite series is set in. As Elsy waits for her chance to get back on the road, she sees her chance to fix the issues the author wrote into the town: mending relationships, rebuilding friendships, and solving a problem involving a mysterious, haunted toilet. The problem? The tall, bookish bookstore owner, Anders, was never a character in this story. He’s an outlier who seems to be the only town citizen who knows he’s in a story. The even bigger problem? Elsy is falling madly in love with him….

Oh, how I wanted to fall instantly in love with this plot and these characters. I think it’s just ingrained in readers to want, at some point, to disappear into their favorite story and live there. This plot should’ve been such an easy sell. It’s what we’ve dreamed of. But the plot of A Novel Love Story – the details more than anything else – just fell a bit flat for me. I love Ashley Poston’s writing and language, and that hasn’t changed. This was still a solid story for me, but it just couldn’t compare to The Dead Romantics and The Seven Year Slip. I was swept away in those stories, wishing I could’ve lived in them and spent time with the main characters, but Elsy and Anders never really came alive for me. Maybe because they spent so much of the book trying to find themselves, I was never invested in them finding each other. I would actually love this story more if the romance was taken out and this was solely about Elsy finding her way back to herself after heartbreak. That, to me, was a more compelling storyline than the lukewarm flirting happening between Elsy and Anders for most of the book. 

I usually spend the entire time reading an Ashley Poston book, whether YA or adult, rooting for the main characters to get together, but I found myself caring more about their individual, emotional healing than I did any sparks between them. The steam between them was nice, but almost seemed secondary to everyone else’s journey. 

If you’re looking for a romance with supernatural elements in it, A Novel Love Story can’t compare to Poston’s previous two novels. However, this novel does offer some wonderful growth when it comes to characters moving beyond heartache, all while still asking readers to believe in the fantastical.

Read More

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *