cover image Wanderlust


Elle Everhart. Putnam, $17 trade paper (368p) ISBN 978-0-593-54508-9

Everhart’s sparkling debut pairs a feisty heroine with a straitlaced hero on a whirlwind adventure. Bisexual writer Dylan Coughlan is at a crossroads: her career at London’s Buxom Magazine is going nowhere, and her decision to write about her abortion has put her at odds with her conservative parents—and at the center of a social media firestorm. So when she wins a trip around the world from a London radio station, she jumps at the chance. The only caveat is that the station gets to choose her traveling companion at random from her phone contacts, and it lands on someone she can’t remember meeting: “Jack the Posho.” Buttoned-up lawyer Jack Hunton felt a real spark when he met Dylan at a club and was disappointed that she never called, so he throws caution to the wind and agrees to join her. At first, freewheeling Dylan worries that planner Jack will be a killjoy. As their trip progresses, however, opposites attract, with Dylan opening up about her past and Jack admitting to his artistic ambitions. Everhart’s layered characters leap off the page, and the no-nonsense approach to both Dylan’s abortion and her sexuality is refreshing. Far-flung backdrops—including Marrakech, Reykjavik, and Tokyo—add to the fun. Everhart is a writer to watch. Agent: Jill Marr, Sandra Dijkstra Literary. (July)