cover image Don’t Want to Miss a Thing

Don’t Want to Miss a Thing

Jill Mansell. Sourcebooks Landmark, $14 trade paper (432p) ISBN 978-1-4022-8393-

A little bundle of joy changes everything in this quirky chick-lit tale of baby love and grown-up commitment from prolific British author Mansell (Thinking of You). After Dexter Yates’s sister Laura, a single mom, suddenly dies, he decides to adopt his infant niece, Delphi. “Laura chose me to be Delphi’s guardian,” he says. “If I don’t do it, I’ll be letting her down.” The decision is an uncharacteristically responsible one by the London playboy’s standards, but Dex will ultimately chuck his sleek bachelor pad, busy sex life, and canary yellow Porsche to settle in quaint Briarwood with Delphi. He’s encouraged to work on his previously nonexistent daddy skills by his neighbor Molly Hayes, a gifted cartoonist with a messy romantic past. A shared love of Delphi provides the first connection for Dex and Molly, but trust will be far harder for the pair. This theme of broken and mended love plays out among the village’s other residents, including retired actress Hope, who reconnects with her true love, and barmaid Lois, who stumbles into bed with a dreamy-looking bore. While it’s no surprise when this mixed-up bunch finds the courage to trust their hearts, their meandering course to happiness is charmingly well charted. Agent: Jennifer Unter, RLR Associates. (Nov.)