The Matzah Ball

Jean Meltzer. Mira, $15.99 trade paper (336p) ISBN 978-0-7783-1158-4
Meltzer debuts with a charming holiday romance. Rabbi’s daughter Rachel Rubenstein-Goldblatt has a secret: she loves Christmas. So much so that she’s built a career writing Christmas romance novels and made-for-TV movies under a pen name. Her success allows her to work from home, vital for a person living with chronic fatigue syndrome. But Rachel’s thrown when her editors decide her next series should be Hanukkah-focused, a holiday she considers minor and not very magical. Seeking inspiration, she agrees to volunteer at a high-end Hanukkah soiree being thrown by her old sleepaway camp boyfriend, Jacob Greenberg. Jacob’s just as attracted to Rachel as he was back in camp days, but wary of her potentially breaking his heart again. Refreshingly, Rachel’s illness is not one of the barriers to their happy ending; instead, the pair weather the typical misunderstandings of a contemporary rom-com. Rachel is a fully formed character whose illness has shaped her choices, but doesn’t define all of who she is. Meanwhile, Jacob’s bubbe, who serves rugalach for every occasion, and Rachel’s best friend, Mickey, are scene-stealers—and deserve happily ever afters of their own. This heartfelt rom-com should be unwrapped by people of all faiths this holiday season. Agent: Carolyn Forde, Transatlantic Literary. (Sept.)
Reviewed on : 06/18/2021
Release date: 09/28/2021
Genre: Romance/Erotica
Hardcover - 336 pages - 978-0-7783-1213-0
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