Copyright © Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

A reality show brings together a romance author and a documentary producer. As a bestselling, prolific romance author, Felicity “Fizzy” Chen knows love. Or at least she thought she did…until, in the middle of a commencement speech, she realizes she doesn’t even “remember the last time [she] was genuinely happy.” As she puts it, “the meat of my story—the romance plot, including love and happiness—is one gaping hole.” She stops writing and dating, worried that her lust for life is gone for good. But then she’s contacted by Connor Prince III, a producer for a reality show. He normally works on socially conscious documentaries, but he needs this job so he can stay in San Diego close to his beloved daughter. He wants Fizzy to be the lead in a dating show, one in which the world can watch a woman who usually writes happily-ever-afters fall in love herself. Fizzy has her own list of demands for the show—namely, that each contestant fit a romance-novel archetype (Hot Nerd, Cinnamon Roll, Vampire, etc.). The result is a refreshingly real show that audiences love—but Fizzy’s most intense connection isn’t with any of the contestants. It’s with Connor, and their powerful chemistry threatens to disrupt the show—and both of their lives. The two women who write as Lauren return with yet another pitch-perfect rom-com that manages to be funny, angst-y, and extremely sexy. Fizzy is an exciting and hilarious main character, and Connor is her perfect complement as a love interest. Most importantly, though, the story is a love letter to the romance genre and its many devoted fans. As Fizzy puts it in her commencement speech, romance is “about elevating stories of joy above stories of pain. It is about seeing yourself as the main character in a very interesting—or maybe even quiet—life that is entirely yours to control.” Fizzy’s journey to see herself as the main character of her own life is moving and satisfying. Another winning romance from Lauren, full of big laughs, a few tears, and some seriously steamy scenes. Copyright © Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

Library Journal
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Romance novelist Felicity "Fizzy" Chen is going through a dry spell in both her professional and personal lives. She hasn't been on a date in over a year and has been unable to write for nearly as long. Fizzy agrees to be the leading lady in producer Connor Prince's new dating show, The True Love Experiment, in hopes of both getting some inspiration for her next novel and maybe finding her own perfect match, but sparks unexpectedly fly between Fizzy and Connor instead of Fizzy and the show's "hero" suitors. Can Fizzy and Connor (who would much rather be filming nature documentaries) overcome the roadblocks in their way and find true love in their own accidental experiment? Readers will appreciate the witty dialogue, chemistry that practically leaps off the page, and believable conflicts, as well as the opportunity to check in with The Soulmate Equation's Jess and River in Lauren's latest (after Something Wilder). VERDICT Both Lauren's loyal fans and all contemporary romance readers will appreciate this sexy, swoony, heartfelt novel.—Whitney Kramer

Publishers Weekly
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Bestsellers Christina Hobbs and Lauren Billings (The Soulmate Equation) return with a smart and hilarious rom-com, writing as Lauren. Romance novelist Fizzy Chen has lost her mojo: she hasn’t felt either a creative or a sexual spark for over a year. So when she’s approached about starring in a Bachelorette-style dating show, she agrees—but puts a twist on things. The men cast to win her heart must embody different romance novel archetypes from a list Fizzy sends producers, among them “hot nerd,” “rock star,” “Navy SEAL,” and “Scottish rogue.” Connor Prince is an amicably divorced father of one and a documentary filmmaker with a television network, a job he loves. So when his boss shunts him over to produce Fizzy’s show, he’s far from happy. Then he meets his vivacious and outspoken star. The pair have explosive chemistry, but Connor isn’t among the eight “heroes” vying for Fizzy’s hand, putting some bumps in their road to a happily ever after. The authors gleefully play with romance tropes, blending the delight of the meet-cute with smart critiques of more toxic dating habits and wrapping the whole in clever dialogue and refreshing sex-positivity. Readers will have no trouble rooting for Fizzy. Agent: Holly Root, Root Literary. (May)