This is a spoiler-free review.
Delilah Green Doesn’t Care by Ashley Herring Blake
Bright Falls, Book 1
Published February 22nd, 2022 by Berkley.
A clever and steamy queer romantic comedy about taking chances and accepting love—with all its complications—by debut author Ashley Herring Blake.
Delilah Green swore she would never go back to Bright Falls—nothing is there for her but memories of a lonely childhood where she was little more than a burden to her cold and distant stepfamily. Her life is in New York, with her photography career finally gaining steam and her bed never empty. Sure, it’s a different woman every night, but that’s just fine with her.
When Delilah’s estranged stepsister, Astrid, pressures her into photographing her wedding with a guilt trip and a five-figure check, Delilah finds herself back in the godforsaken town that she used to call home. She plans to breeze in and out, but then she sees Claire Sutherland, one of Astrid’s stuck-up besties, and decides that maybe there’s some fun (and a little retribution) to be had in Bright Falls, after all.
Having raised her eleven-year-old daughter mostly on her own while dealing with her unreliable ex and running a bookstore, Claire Sutherland depends upon a life without surprises. And Delilah Green is an unwelcome surprise…at first. Though they’ve known each other for years, they don’t really know each other—so Claire is unsettled when Delilah figures out exactly what buttons to push. When they’re forced together during a gauntlet of wedding preparations—including a plot to save Astrid from her horrible fiancé—Claire isn’t sure she has the strength to resist Delilah’s charms. Even worse, she’s starting to think she doesn’t want to…
It has been a long time since I read a romance novel I enjoyed as much as I enjoyed Delilah Green Doesn’t Care by Ashley Herring Blake! This book is the definition of un-put-down-able! I couldn’t keep my mind off of Delilah, Claire, and their whirlwind romance from the first moment I started reading their story.
The characters were cute, and real, and just so easy to root for. And not just Delilah and Claire either, the other characters were really well developed too. Astrid especially. It makes me so, so, so excited that there’s a sequel to this novel about *her* love story (and to a woman!) And the third installment in this series is about Iris?! Blake is feeding us and I am here. for. it.
I also loved how Josh, Claire’s ex and father of her daughter Ruby, wasn’t one-note either. Neither was Ruby herself, which I often find can (unfortunately) happen to ancillary characters in romance novels. Everyone had clear motivations for their actions; whether I agreed with those actions, well. It wouldn’t be entertaining if there wasn’t some ~drama~
Look, I’m not saying Delilah Green Doesn’t Care rewrites the genre. But the jaded main character who returns to her hometown as a somebody when they used to be a nobody, only to find they have reciprocated romantic tension with their old one-sided crush… I mean, that is on its own *chef’s kiss.* Then there are the tropes sprinkled in like, well, sprinkles on the top of a very tasty cupcake.
But Delilah Green Doesn’t Care ~doesn’t care~ to stop there! It’s got the added depth of Delilah rekindling a relationship with her estranged step-sister Astrid. Claire navigating the ever-changing dynamic of co-parenting a preteen. Not any of the characters are one-note. Not even the “wicked stepmother.”
And I haven’t even gotten to the dialogue! Dialogue is like the bread and butter of any good romance novel. It will make or break it. And, boy, does Blake’s dialogue *make* Delilah Green Doesn’t Care. It’s just so witty and well-written. The banter volleyed between these characters felt so authentic, familiar, and just plain fun.
Delilah Green Doesn’t Care may be one of the best romance novels I’ve read in a while. It’s funny, heartfelt, and absolutely swoon-worthy. It had me head-over-heels in love with the characters, their development, and above all, the queer romance. 💕
Have you read Delilah Green Doesn’t Care?
What did you think of it?
Let me know!