I received this book for free from in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
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Released: March 1 2022
Genre: Womens Fiction
Published by Berkley
“Just because I can write love stories, doesn’t mean I can live them.”
Lanie Bloom’s life changed the day she discovered the romance novels of Noa Callaway. Lanie’s dreams went from becoming a doctor to becoming an editor. She even found the love of her life due to one of Noa’s earlier novels. The last decade of her life has been spent working towards the moment she would become Noa’s editor at Peony Press. And now that the moment is finally here, Lanie’s life is falling apart. Her picture-perfect engagement is starting to show its flaws and the author she has idolized since she was a teenager is definitely not the person she always imagined looking up to. But with the pressures of an author behind on their next deadline building, Lanie is about to discover a real-life plot twist that even the best-selling Noa Callaway couldn’t see coming.
By Any Other Name was just an all around cute story; even when Lanie’s life felt like it was falling apart, there were plenty of little things to enjoy about her story. My previous experience with reading Lauren Kate comes from her YA paranormal Fallen series, and a lot of the low-level flirting/no sex from her YA writing transfers over to her adult fiction.
This novel was described as enemies-to-lovers, but I think both the “enemies” and the “lovers” part is a bit of an exaggeration. At most, Lanie is shocked at the revelations thrown her way at the beginning of the story, but to say she is enemies with anyone invokes more anger than Lanie ever demonstrated on the page. And, as previously mentioned, there is no sex (either on page or off) so calling the story enemies-to-lovers is a bit of a stretch for me. It’s more strangers-to-coworkers-to-heading towards being lovers, if you want a more accurate description.
There was quite a bit to love about this sweet romance. As someone who loves books and the publishing world in general, I loved that this story featured an editor and her author and the stress of getting books on shelves in time, especially when those book sales can make or break a publishing house. Lanie’s story might be fictional, but it was still fun to see behind the scenes a bit when it comes to book publishing.
Lanie has a pretty big revelation fairly early on in the story; it does shape everything Lanie thought she knew and alters the course of her life. While it isn’t exactly hard to figure out what the big revelation is and why the mysterious Noa Callaway remains so mysterious, most of my favorite parts of this book can’t be discussed without giving away major plot spoilers. Without giving too much away, I can say that I ended up really enjoying Lanie’s love interest in this book. They were a bit opposites attract, at least at first, but I loved watching them grow closer with each interaction. It was all very low steam, so much so that I would even hesitate to firmly put this one in the romance genre. With so much emphasis on Lanie’s career and personal happiness, By Any Other Name is much more women’s lit that just happens to have a touch of romance.
I enjoyed Lanie’s story, and found it to be a pretty quick read. I didn’t personally think there was anything earth-shattering about Noa Callaway’s big revelation, but I thought Lanie’s journey, friendships, and hint of romance more than made up for any unpredictability.
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