Adriana Herrera is becoming one of my fave contemporary romance authors. Her books sweep me off my feet & the hero of her upcoming release Here to Stay is so heart-grabbing, the heroine so inspiring, that I wanted more than one Epilogue. Or for the Epilogue to be longer. I just wanted more .
Julia del Mar Ortiz is very close to her family but she moved to Dallas from NY so that she could support her boyfriend. & then he broke up with her.
In the time since she’s thrown herself into her rewarding job as Program Director for the philanthropic arm of a major department store. Now she wants to make friends, specifically with other former NYers in her work orbit.
Unfortunately that includes Rocco Quinn, the gorgeous analyst who’s come to assess her company & determine what can be jettisoned before it goes public.
As Julia discovers, Rocco is secretly a big mushy marshmallow. Despite his confidence & sometimes performance of confidence, she notes that he’s also occasionally shy, uncomfortable, etc & in each of those moments my heart is as touched as hers. Rocco’s never had someone take care of him the way that he feels compelled to take care of others (cue the tears ).
And Julia is fantastic. She’s brave, confident, into fashion, & as she reveals to Rocco, passionate about her role in providing safe spaces for children who are undocumented immigrants and/or have parents who are. Throughout the romance Julia has to learn how to negotiate fighting for herself & making a potential compromise for a beloved.
I kinda wanted more specific introspection on the ethicality of them pursuing a relationship when so much is on the line, but otherwise their relationship plays out beautifully. There’s a lot of yearning, a lovely slow burn, & it’s ultimately super sexy.
Add to all of this a nuanced & often loving portrayal of family life (especially Julia’s Dominican mother & Puerto Rican father), humor, & shared bonding over Queens, & Here to Stay gives me nearly everything I could ask for.
Here to Stay is out on 08/25. Thanks to @harlequinpublicityteam & Netgalley for my complimentary copies of the book; all opinions provided my own.
Give me that HEA, please.
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