cover image Flirty Little Secret

Flirty Little Secret

Jessica Lepe. Forever, $16.99 trade paper (368p) ISBN 978-1-5387-3934-1

Daily life for neurodivergent high school guidance counselor Lucy Galindo is an uphill battle in Lepe’s charming rom-com debut. Though she’s kind and caring, and has a loving family and friends and a job where she hopes to make a difference, Lucy struggles with self-confidence due to her depression, anxiety, and ADHD. She can only be truly herself through her secret online persona, @TheMissGuidedCounselor, offering bold advice to her followers. Meanwhile, Aldrich Fletcher, furious at his father for abandoning his wife of 34 years for his pregnant mistress, leaves the family money management business to pursue teaching. Unfortunately, Aldrich’s ex-girlfriend Georgia, who cheated on him with his own brother, also works at his new school. The bright spots in his days are fleeting moments with beautiful Lucy, who he meets cute when she accidentally burns him with tea, and his conversations with @TheMissGuidedCounselor, who he connects with via the anonymous handle @BravesGuy93. The romance plays out as a fresh, diverse twist on You’ve Got Mail, and it’s a joy to watch Lucy grow in confidence as she learns to incorporate her online persona into daily life. Fans of Abbott Elementary will be especially charmed. Agent: Jill Marsal, Marsal Lyon. (Mar.)