cover image An Independent Woman

An Independent Woman

Kit Meredith. Bold Strokes, $19.95 trade paper (288p) ISBN 978-1-63679-553-9

Meredith debuts with a polyamorous sapphic romance as sensitive as it is spicy. Rebecca loves her job in a care home for disabled adults, and when she meets new resident Phoebe, who has Down syndrome and is living away from home for the first time, she knows she can help Phoebe with the skills she needs to move out on her own. The only problem is Phoebe’s prickly and overprotective sister, Alex, who’s determined to keep Phoebe from being harmed in the care home environment. Rebecca needs Alex’s support in Phoebe’s care—and besides that, she would really like Alex to like her, because Alex is hot enough to make Rebecca stumble over her words. When Rebecca learns Alex is polyamorous too, and Alex makes her reciprocal attraction to Rebecca clear, neither woman can resist the pull. But are the traumas in Alex’s past, along with Rebecca’s reluctance to potentially risk both her job and her stable triad relationship, too much to overcome? Meredith’s characters feel whole and real, with lives that are enhanced by their romance rather than railroaded by it, and their thoughtful exploration of the balance between independence and healthy relationships is nourishing but never preachy. It’s a measured, kindhearted look at what it takes to make relationships work. (Sept.)