Fools In Love: Fresh Twists on Romantic Tales edited by Ashley Herring Blake and Rebecca Podos
Publisher: Running Press Kids
Expected publication: December 7th 2021
Genres: Anthology, Romance
* Received this copy from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. Thank you very much! This doesn’t affect the review in any way. My opinions are, as always, my own.*
Join fifteen bestselling, award-winning, and up-and-coming authors as they reimagine some of the most popular tropes in the romance genre.
Fake relationships. Enemies to lovers. Love triangles and best friends, mistaken identities and missed connections. This collection of genre-bending and original stories celebrates how love always finds a way, featuring powerful flora, a superhero and his nemesis, a fantastical sled race through snow-capped mountains, a golf tournament, the wrong ride-share, and even the end of the world. With stories written by Rebecca Barrow, Ashley Herring Blake, Gloria Chao, Mason Deaver, Sara Farizan, Claire Kann, Malinda Lo, Hannah Moskowitz, Natasha Ngan, Rebecca Podos, Lilliam Rivera, Laura Silverman, Amy Spalding, Rebecca Kim Wells, and Julian Winters this collection is sure to sweep you off your feet.
Fools in love is a collection of short stories featuring 15 different authors. It features some typical and famous love tropes with a lot of amazing representations! Overall loved the idea and I have my expectations for some of the authors! This is perfect for lovers of LGBTQ+ romance and comes with a variety of genres! We have fantasy, magical stories, contemporary ones and more!
Let’s see about each story individually!
Silver and Gold by Natasha Ngan – 4.5 stars
- Lesbian and Bi Reps
- This was nothing like what I was expecting, although I should have know that something wild would come from Natasha Ngan! This is a story set in an impossible competition of wolf-sledging. It was definitely unexpected and I loved how much the story was built in so less time. I can’t help but want more of those characters and would definitely read a full novel like this! Great start!
Five Stars by Amy Spalding – 4 stars
- Lesbian Reps + Anxiety Rep
- This was more on the line of what I was expecting of a Romance Anthology. It was sweet and fun to read and I was completely engaged in the romance! This is much like an unexpected Uber Ride experience! It was quite simple but it definitely gave me all the right feels.
Unfortunately, blobs do not eat snacks by Rebecca Kim Wells – 3 stars
- Lesbian Reps
- This is a one-sided enemies to lovers story with some magic and fantasy elements. I would have liked it a bit longer and had some more insight of the world since we are thrown into the middle of it all. It was interesting and I would read more about the magic in this world. The two characters are in a final exam to graduate from their magical school but things don’t go as linear as they thought it was going to be and they end up having to save a city instead.
Edges by Ashley Herring Blake – 3 stars
- Bi and Lesbian Reps
- This was a cute school romance with two very different characters and a lot of misunderstandings. One of our mc is afraid of being hurt and alone. She closes herself by saying that others didn’t even really want to be with her, while she is the one putting up walls and not others. I could definitely identify with that… I found it definitely cute but nothing really special.
What makes us heroes by Julian Winters – 3.5 stars
- POC mc + Bi and Gay Reps
- This is a super hero story with some cool super powers and an enemies to lovers story. It also talks about how one shouldn’t be defined by what their parents are or aren’t and that you should be with someone you love and not just because it would be best. I found it really cute and it definitely gave me all the cute feels!
And by Hannah Moskowitz – 2 stars
- Bi and Polyamory Reps
- This is a romance featuring a love triangle, which is incredibly common to see, but in this one we have also some polyamory reps, which made it more unique. I wasn’t a fan of the story however. I get the concept and it would have been fine, if only I actually had cared for any of the characters? It was all way too fast and I by the end was just not invested in it.
My best friend’s girl by Sara Farizan – 3 stars
- Bi and Lesbian Reps + Persian and Chinese American Reps
- This is a cute love triangle set in high school with some superhero elements. It was quite cute and I really liked how much friendship it had in it too! Loved their relationship and how much it meant to them.
(Fairy)like attracts like by Claire Kann – 4 stars
- POC mc and Lesbians Reps + Plus-size Rep
- This is a story set in a camp where they work with kids (kinda like a summer camp for two days?), reenacting different types of fairies. Our mc tho has some fairy qualities herself, like not being able to lie, which makes it a lot more difficult when she is paired with her crush! This was really cute and it definitely surprised me at the end!
These strings by William Rivera – 5 stars
- Latinx Rep
- This story is all about puppets and family traditions! I really enjoyed this one. It gave me all the feels, it was subtle and it was fun! I loved that even tho sometimes is difficult to step up to family, our mc was willing to follow her dreams. Also, I love puppet stories so, this was a win for me!
The passover date by Laura Silverman – 4 stars
- Jewish Rep
- This is about a Passover Seder date family tradition. Our mc keeps on not bringing a date for the past years. This is the first year she manages to bring someone so naturally that’s a big thing! I really liked the tradition in the book, especially done like our mcs family! And the romance was super cute and simple! Lovely passover cheddar. If you know, you know! 😛
Bloom by Rebecca Barrow – 5 stars
- POC mc and Lesbian Rep
- This story is about time. And how to wield it. I don’t want to give more than that because this was a gorgeous story and I think it’s just best if it surprises you. I loved how tender and beautiful it was written and I loved how strong the romance was, I could just feel it you know? Loved it.
Teed up by Gloria Chao – 4 stars
- Taiwanese American Rep
- This is about a girl being on a so called “boys world” – golf. How difficult it is for her to be accepted just for being a girl. Everyone either says bad things behind her back or wants to get close for the wrong motives, until Liam. Liam changes everything and it’s beautiful! Loved seeing her finding herself and her love for golf. Super cute even if I know nothing about golf!
Boys noise by Mason Deaver – 3 stars
- Trans Gay Rep
- This is about two boys in a boy band called Boys Noise. Dealing with all the downsides of being in a boy band that has a lot of rules for both their protection and for the desired outcome from the public, they decide to run away for a day or so to New York for one of the boys’ birthday. Their relationship developed really slowly and nicely and it was quite cute to read about!
Girls just want to have fun by Malinda Lo – 3 stars
- Lesbian Rep + Chinese” Rep
- This is about a princess that ends up falling in love with a normal girl during a night. It’s very sci-fi and the story is really cute and inventive. There’s a lot about the world and it seems really interesting. Reminds me of a contemporary Cinder.
Disaster by Rebecca Podos – 3.5 stars
- Jewish Lesbian Rep + Bi Rep
- End-of-the-world romance to end the anthology! This was a really cute romance full of misunderstandings that lead to the perfect ending. It’s a second chance romance and I couldn’t root more for the happy ending!
Overall this was a really cute collection of very diverse stories. My favs have to be: Silver and Gold, These Strings and Bloom!
If you are into romances and all things queer and diverse, this will be perfect for you!
What did you think of it? Have you read it? Let’s discuss it in the comments below!