* Review * SWAP AND SMELL THE ROSES by Karen Booth

I voluntarily read an early copy of this book.

* Review * SWAP AND SMELL THE ROSES by Karen BoothSwap and Smell the Roses by Karen Booth
Series: The Swap #1
Published by Afterglow Books by Harlequin on May 21, 2024
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In this deliciously tender, steamy romance, a burned-out musician swaps city life for cottage country only to find that slowing down means a racing heart, thanks to the grumpy guy next door…

When Willow Moore’s lifelong dream of music stardom goes bust, she’s burned out enough to need drastic change. As in, she’s trading her Brooklyn apartment for two months in the Connecticut countryside. Soon she’s baking bread, spending Saturdays at the farmer’s market and stopping to smell the roses, but some things in her new #cottagecore life aren’t so pleasant. Like her landlord, former chef Reid Harrell. As grouchy and reserved as Willow is chatty and outgoing, Reid is an annoyingly sexy keep-out sign. If only Willow was good at staying away.

Something about Reid, a sliver of pain poking through that flinty facade, makes her wonder if they’re more alike than she thought. Reid once chased success, too, and found it—at a price. Now all he wants is to be left alone to garden, but Willow's not giving up so quick, especially when one of their heated arguments sparks an idea for a song. Her renewed creativity awakens them both, hurling them into a passionate vortex neither expects.

As the summer winds down, Willow is forced to confront her needs, wants and desires, not to mention Reid, the hardest puzzle of all to figure out. Maybe it’s time for the city girl to stop dwelling on dreams dashed and start following her heart—no matter where it might take her…


Heartfelt and inspiring! I didn’t get a huge romantic comedy vibe out of this storyline, but I got a whole lot of healing and rediscovery and I loved every single minute of it! Willow and Reid were super cute. He was grumpy and she was sort of supposed to be perceived as sunshine but since she was dealing with her own upheaval of life it was more like she brought heart and just genuine kindness to the picture. Very easy to like them both, really quaint take on falling for a summer fling and I loved the town as a whole. I’m looking forward to Bailey’s story … but she has some redeeming to do because I sort of don’t like her already.

Highly recommend this book to anyone looking for a quick read that pulls at your heartstrings and brings a satisfying happily ever after in the end.


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