When he was sixteen, Will went with his mother to Chicago to visit an uncle he never knew he had. While outside on his uncle’s balcony he hears a girl one or two floors up speaking to someone. Her voice captures his imagination and he thinks of her all the time over the years following. Sixteen years later he inherits his uncle’s condo and meets that same girl, now a young woman whom he has an instant connection. The problem is that he wants to use the condo as a long term rental and Nora and the other occupants of the building are against it. Love at First is an atypical enemies to lovers tale with a great cast of side characters and two main characters who will tug at your heart.
As I was reading Love at First and getting used to the pace I was having flashbacks to the movies Sleepless in Seattle and While You Were Sleeping. Both of those are favorite romance movies of mine. Love At First has a similar pace and humor. Softly sweet and a little magical. Will and Nora (perhaps named after Nora Ephron?) despite being on opposite sides of the rental argument have that instant connection that adds an electricity to their interactions. Literally and metaphysically. When they touch hands for the first time they felt that connection and despite not seeing each other much at first their only thoughts are of each other. This is definitely a woman’s love story and plays into all of our romantic hopes and dreams. Well, mine anyway. Instant love, connection, physical attraction, and a gentleness and thoughtfulness that screams I love you. Magical.
Let’s talk about Will and Nora. Although I loved them for each other they were not perfect people. Who wants to read about perfect people who meet and fall in love? Most people reading these novels aren’t perfect and the main characters faults allow us to dream that this too may happen to us. Despite different circumstances growing up, Will and Nora have similar feelings of abandonment, but Nora had her Nonna and the residents of this Condo complex she is so attached to, Will only had himself. As they explore their relationship there is such a gentleness to how they interact, it really gives a magical feel to what they discover about themselves and each other.
I can’t end this review without a brief note about the cast of characters that live in the condo complex. They are funny, friendly, grouchy, and complex. I loved how despite their differences they were a family that looked out for and loved each other. What a fabulous place to live, despite the weird smells and flocked wall paper.
You may have guessed that I really enjoyed Love at First. It’s hard not to appreciate the authors ability to remove cynicism and reality from the reader’s mind and replace those things with a story that draws them in and holds them in the strong arms of a soft and sweet romance. I reveled in that vacation from realism and can’t wait for this author to write her next novel so I can put those rose colored glasses back on.
I received a copy of this book through NetGalley for my honest review and it was honest.
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