cover image The Red Bikini

The Red Bikini

Lauren Christopher. Berkley Sensation, $7.99 mass market (320p) ISBN 978-0-425-27441-5

The easy charm of fictional Sandy Cove, Calif. sets the scene for a sweet romance between divorced mother Giselle McCabe and international surfing star Fin Hensen. Giselle and her five-year-old, Coco, are visiting Giselle’s sister, Lia, in Sandy Cove. Giselle plans to photograph a neighbor’s surf camp in exchange for surfing lessons for Coco. Shortly after meeting, Fin and Giselle arrange to be each other’s companions for two difficult occasions: Giselle must attend her former father-in-law’s funeral, where she expects to see her ex and his new lover, and Fin wants a “Donna Reed” type to improve his image at an important sponsor event. Buoyed by complementary needs for stability and appreciation, Giselle and Fin face the obstacles of their age differences, different lifestyles, and opposition from Giselle’s ex. Christopher’s writing is crisp and her characters are strong, and readers will look forward to the next installments in the trilogy. Agent: Jill Marsal, Marsal Lyon Literary Agency. (July)