cover image Chick Magnet

Chick Magnet

Emma Barry. Montlake, $16.99 trade paper (322p) ISBN 978-1-66250-501-0

Sparks fly between a chicken-loving YouTuber and her veterinarian neighbor in Barry’s sexy and uplifting enemies-to-lovers romance (after The One You Want). After a humiliating breakup during a livestream, Nicole Jones, Chick Nic to her fans, decides it’s time for a change and moves to the Yagerstown, Va., with her flock of backyard chickens in tow. Her new neighbor, dour veterinarian Will Lund, usually keeps to himself, but he can’t help giving Nic a piece of his mind when he realizes she’s the reason chickens have become the new fad pet, leading them to be brought into his office in unprecedented numbers. Despite his disapproval, however, Will’s mesmerized by Nic’s sass and beauty, and while Nic could do without his judgment, she can’t deny her own attraction to the “avenging Viking” next door. Late night talks and their ability to see through each other’s facades bring them closer, but before they can reach happily ever after, Will needs to get a handle on his depression and Nic needs to work through her trust issues. Barry handles both characters with care and delivers a powerful message about seeking help for mental illness even as she infuses the story with ample comic relief. Pet loving romance fans should flock to this one. Agent: Sarah Younger, NY Literary. (Jan.)