A Novel Proposal (2023)

About the Book

Book: A Novel Proposal

Author: Denise Hunter

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Release Date: March 21, 2023

From the bestselling author of The Convenient Groom (now a beloved Hallmark Original movie) comes a sweet and sizzling story of a romance writer surprised by her own happily ever after.

When novelist Sadie Goodwin is forced to stop writing westerns and charged with penning a contemporary romance novel to rescue her lackluster sales, there’s only one tiny problem: She’s never been in love.

Desperate to salvage her career, Sadie begins devouring romance novels. Knowing she must devote herself to this confounding genre, she accepts an invitation to hole up at her friend’s beach duplex for the summer. Where better to witness love in bloom than on the beautiful North Carolina shore?

However, once ensconced in the charming ocean-front home with her sweet maltipoo Rio, she finds many ways to procrastinate. First there’s the beach, right outside her backdoor, with all its interesting visitors (research). Then there’s the free library she decides to build and set up by the back deck (She has to do something with all those romance novels). To say nothing of Sam Ford, the grumpy neighbor on the other side of the duplex . . . who she can’t seem to stop annoying.

A social butterfly by nature, Sadie soon gets to know all the beach regulars—sunbathers, walkers, and surfers alike. The free books draw a crowd right up to the house for nice little book chats, which further irritates her reclusive neighbor, to break up her “writing.” But things take an unexpected turn when Sadie opens a recently-placed novel to find a secret compartment—and tucked inside is a beautiful engagement ring. To whom does the ring belong? Sadie is convinced she needs to find the owner and save the man’s proposal from certain doom.

She draws a reluctant Sam into the project, and slowly their connection begins to develop. Are these weird fluttery feelings the first stirrings of love? Has Sadie managed to stumble upon the very subject about which she must write—and wouldn’t Sam make the perfect alpha hero?

Will Sadie find the ring’s rightful owner? And will she manage to pen a career-saving romance novel by summer’s end?

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My Thoughts

A Novel Proposal by Denise Hunter is my new favorite book by this author. I devoured this story in two days! I did NOT want to put it down. This is one of those super fun books where you read something and it makes you chuckle, so you want to share it with whomever is sitting next to you even if they could care less. I love that! LOL! So, what did I love so much? First, I think the structure of this book is super witty. The heroine, Sadie, is an author who has to learn how to write a Romance novel like yesterday. Each chapter begins with a quote from Romance Writing 101. I love this because I feel like I was in the trenches with Sadie as she goes through the arduous process of learning how to craft a Romance novel; BUT, I also love that Hunter uses the quotes from Romance Writing 101 to clue the reader in to what her chapters will be about. So clever! In addition to the structure of the story, I really loved the main characters. Sadie and Sam are fantastic. Poor Sadie! At the start of this story, the reader really feels the stress, anxiety, and awfulness of having a book contract cancelled out of the blue. My stomach fell. All Sadie’s work for her current WIP down the drain. And then to be told to do something new, something that is completely left-field for her — write a Romance novel — as if it’s just a matter of changing a few details. A lesser woman would have crumpled in the fetal position in the corner of some dark room. But not Sadie! Such enthusiasm and spunk. Of course she is nervous and doubts her abilities, but she jumps right into the task with very little complaining or whining. I want to be more like Sadie when challenges arise in my own life. Then there is Sam. Sam is swoony from the first moment the reader meets him. He is tall, dark, and handsome, but he is way more than that. At the start of this story, Sam is in hiding licking his emotional wounds, so he is a tad on the curmudgeon-y side. But Sadie’s personality breaks his walls down and allows him to blossom into one seriously rad dude. His ability to forgive and move on is really inspiring. Sam is a great guy all around. As far as Sadie and Sam go as a couple — dynamite chemistry! As their friendship grows, the romantic tension between them grows naturally and realistically. They are truly one of the cutest couples I’ve read in a while, and I rooted for them the whole time. The final aspect to this story that I loved so much was how happy it made me to read it. I had a smile almost the entire time, and I think that is because of Sadie. Her bubbly and happy and friendly personality is infectious. I am definitely walking away from this story a little more happy and smiley than normal.

A Novel Proposal is a wonderful and joy-filled Contemporary Romance that I highly recommend. Seriously, I loved every minute spent reading this excellent story, and I know you will, too.

I received a review copy of this novel in eBook form from the publisher, Thomas Nelson, via NetGalley. In no way has this influenced my review. The opinions expressed in this review are my own.

5 thoughts on “A Novel Proposal (2023)

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