Listen up, rom-com readers, there’s a new kid in town.
Fated or Bust by Tallulah O’Hara is fast, current, and every little girl’s dream—it’s also every grown woman’s fantasy.
Come on, who doesn’t want the tattooed rock star to fall off their walls and into their bed?
The beauty of this book is that every woman will identify with our gorgeous heroine, Scarlett Jones. We envy her for her go-getting career and for grabbing the attention of The LG, one of the most coveted men on the planet. We want to look like her and live her life—but Scar is like every one of us—she has her self-doubt and insecurities.
As we say in the North of England, she’s got a gob on her and doesn’t pull any punches. Scar bleeds raw emotion onto the page, and we are left in no doubt as to what she’s thinking at any given time. She’s funny, with some of the best one-liners and put-downs I’ve read this year. She’s got sass and more balls than most men. This woman knows what she wants and goes out to get it—she’s inspirational, but not in a puke-in-a-bucket, preachy way. She’s a girl’s girl, and her friends and colleagues know their worth through her. And, she’s the kind of boss who always has her people’s corner.
The book follows the recipe on the can to the letter. It’s precisely what we want from a rom-com. We have the setting and open during a concert at Wembley. We have the build when the band come into her life in an extraordinary way. We have the heady falling—the connection is electric and instant. The rest takes time and is gradual.
What makes Scar unique and as rare as unicorn teeth? She has a particular card—and it’s not a postcard.
The book is raunchy. Boy meets girl meets callouses in tender places from over-stimulation. The relationship building is excellent, not just with the LG, but between the band and Scar’s circle of people. We have a lavish wedding in the middle of it all and executive events to attend—the reader has a golden invitation. The scene-setting, opulence and description are perfect.
We have the fun of this book and the comedy all the way through—the situations aren’t comedic, but the narrative is. It’s a pacey and easy read and got me in the chuckle factory more than once. Back to the recipe, the cake’s in the oven –and we have the conflict at exactly the right juncture. The love rival explodes into the picture—and she’s gorgeous. Scar wavers—and drops the ball.
The author doesn’t rush the scenes. We are taken elsewhere, we think about alternative options, and we are taken from London to New York and beyond with her high-flying job and lifestyle.
Do we come back full circle—or is this the end? I like that we have several pokers in the fire. We don’t know if they’ll make it— and we only find out when Scar does. Does she end up with The LG? Is he all that after all? Maybe when the dazzle of the bright lights dim, she can see the blokes in the shadows better.
Make or break, fated or bust? This book is sheer beautiful escapism—had a hard day? Pour yourself a glass of wine, curl up in your comfy-spot, open this book and take your reservation for –Elsewhere.
A Best Book Editors Gold Star recommendation for this one. Great read.
Katherine Black / Susan (Sooz) Simpson
Founder of Best Book Editors
Katherine has held almost every single job imaginable, from painting gnomes to zookeeper. She spent most of her life in the caring profession and has managed both a nursing home and a care agency. But her passion for the written language always brings her home to novel writing.
Born in Tyne-and-Wear, North-East England, she has settled in the beautiful Lake District, Cumbria, with her partner, two dogs, a cat, an iguana and a python (just don’t ask her which of those six things is her favourite!).
She specialises in content creation and social media outreach, and has been a developmental editor for hundreds of clients. She owns and operates bestbookeditors.com where she helps foundling authors polish their skills. However, after being diagnosed with a dramatic brain condition in 2022, she has had to let 23 staff go, and scale back the business. BBE is still very much open, we are just fewer and can’t take as much work on.
Katherine Black is the author of psychological thriller/detective/fantasy adventure novels.