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No Parking

3.64  ·  Rating details ·  64 ratings  ·  38 reviews
When Marianne Windmere’s bakery customers begin complaining that her parking lot is always full, she assumes it must be customers for the new restaurant next door. She’s never met her neighbor, and with the parking lot situation, she has no interest in doing so. But when a snowstorm knocks out the power and traps both women in the building overnight, sparks fly–until the n ...more
Kindle Edition, 1st edition, 257 pages
Published February 10th 2020 by Ninestar Press
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Average rating 3.64  · 
Rating details
 ·  64 ratings  ·  38 reviews

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Lex Kent
3.50 Stars. This was a nice read. My first by Wheeler and I believe her full length debut. For some reason I thought this was a novella but according to my Kindle it was a full length story and it felt like it. This was a little different than I expected, but I’m a fan of different so I appreciate those aspects. There were a few parts that I felt could have been stronger but it was a sweet read for sure.

This is a story about two bisexual women -either 59 or 60- who work next door to each other
This started off so well with two women in a near silent feud over the parking lot usage of their respective establishments. Marianne Windmere has been running the family bakery for a number of years now and business is still fairly good. Her family has owned the building and the business for over a hundred years and it’s a bit of a town institution. Rana owns the Cairo Grill in the one area that Marianne’s father sold to his best friend before he died. When a storm knocks out the power one nigh ...more
Feb 06, 2020 rated it liked it
No Parking was a easy read and a little on the slow side at times. Marianne Windmere owns a bakery and the building it is in. She is having a parking problem in the back of her lot, but assumes because of the restaurant next door. Her neighbor Rana leases out the store next door and has a restaurant. She assumes that the parking is because of the bakery. As to story progresses, the focus becomes who is parking in the lot, who owns it along with a host of other issues about the building that hous ...more
Jan 31, 2020 rated it really liked it
Extremely interesting story. Loved the fact that most characters were bisexual. That the story promotes friendship, kindness, respect. From bakery owner who almost lost everything, to gaining not only what was hers, but acquiring love interest as well. All started with Parking war and ended in community coming together.
Honestly, I wish I was living there!
Great story. Might be slow on the beginning, but picks up quarter into the book.
Oct 24, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was really lovely! I have it tagged as romance here but it is really a story about community that is fairly light on romantic love - the two women spend much of the book as friends with some tension. That felt very true to the characters, who are close to 60 and had both been married previously; a new relationship was an intriguing possibility for both of them but not something that would overtake their busy lives. In some ways it was actually kind of refreshing to read a romance novel that ...more
I received an advance copy from the publisher via Netgalley for review purposes. This in no way influences my review; all words, thoughts, and opinions are my own.

Content notes:(view spoiler)
Feb 10, 2020 rated it did not like it
Shelves: f-f, arc, dnf
Did not finish.

The main character has big “will call the cops on you in your own building” energy and it’s so hard to root for her knowing her prejudice and ignorance allowed her to foster an overblown dislike of her neighbour for no reason.

Also, I’d really like for the author to consider getting targeted beta readers next time, because everything from the one-sided grudge to the hyper-focus on the accent, to this one terrible line: “She wasn’t about to get murdered in the dark over a parking l
Feb 10, 2020 rated it really liked it
Who knew a small town could have so much diversity and so much acceptance of the diversity?

We follow the story of Marianne and Rana, two women approaching 60 and owning a business right next to each other. Both women have been married to a man before and have multiple children. The characters are likeable, but somewhat unbelievable. Rana and her daughter are rather open and I found it somewhat unbelievable with their background. I doesn’t line up with my experience.
The ladies have trouble with t
Jan 30, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: read-in-2020

WHAT a delightful book! I swear the last time I snacked this much during a book it was Redwall. So happy for an older f/f romance with small town legal shenanigans and FOOD.

Also I loved how Marianne was friend with her exes, even her ex-husband! That was a wonderful relationship I was not expecting to build.

ALSO ZEKE, Zeke is my bb and I love him.
Feb 21, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: recommended, romance
This is a nice romance about two lady business owners in a small town full of queer people, many of whom aren’t white, and there is legal maneuvering to be done! A protagonist who is bisexual and on the ace spectrum, MY HEART! I absolutely loved this.
Feb 17, 2020 rated it really liked it
I really enjoyed this! The book (to me) was less about the romance and more about the town, the bakery, legal issues, social commentary, queerness sprinkled all over, which I enjoyed.
It probably says something about my state of mind as much as the writing, but I could feel the tenseness of the situation in my body while reading. Would recommend this book to others!

(also, ace rep aw yeah!)
Kashmira Majumdar
No Parking reads like the literary embodiment of Writeblr (Tumblr’s writing community) in the best possible way. It’s a place full of rallying cries like “The patriarchy bores me,” “research your diversity”, “everybody is queer and I don’t see any different” and “2020 is when we get to see real women in fiction.” My favourite thing about this book is that it had diversity without being about the fact that it had diversity. It was about diverse characters going about their fully-realised lives.

Feb 06, 2020 rated it really liked it
What a delightfully cozy romance with an intriguing cast of characters and a wide diversity in a small town setting!

Marianne Windmere hasn’t always owned her family’s nearly century old bakery, but she has for nearly three decades. It’s seen as an institution in the small town of Swanley as much as the town itself. She lives a quiet life rising early to prep for her long day in the bakery, shares her workspace with one dedicated, albeit young, employee, and fumes over the omnipresent cars flood
Kristian Walls
Feb 24, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I loved this story so much. It was not what I was expecting in a few aspects but I wouldn’t change a thing. The characters were much older than I was expecting, yet I was glad because a story from that generation is totally something I have been looking for. I loved seeing people In their 50's and 60's able to articulate who they are in a way that may not have been available to them earlier in life.
Swanley is like a cute miniature version of how I hope the world can one day be. Its not perfect a
Karin A
Feb 06, 2020 rated it liked it
Older characters alert! This is a small-town romance about two ladies in their fifties (almost 60). After reading I think you will enjoy this book if you like slow-paced books and identify as asexual or are interested in reading about that point of view.

Both MC's were married with kids, Marianne was born and raised in the small town and Rana is an immigrant from Egypt. Also, there is Zeke, who is a trans (FTM) man.
This book is very sensitive towards the diverse queer community with the correct
Joyfully Jay
Feb 10, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: kris
A Joyfully Jay review.

4 stars

I thought the blurb for this one sounded cute, and though the book turned out not to be what I expected, it was definitely a good story. The characters absolutely shine here, and really make this story worth reading, even if the plot didn’t quite strike my fancy.

What I particularly loved about this story was the effortless and organic way the author portrayed a truly diverse cast of characters. Not only with the MCs, but all the supporting secondary characters as we
Feb 06, 2020 rated it liked it
I'm sure this book has its audience, and it isn't me. I enjoy that it was a small town romance that featured diverse characters, including sexuality, race, religion, ability, age. I enjoyed reading a romance in which one of the characters was asexual.

I didn't enjoy the prose. I'm more apt to complain when there's too much figurative language and it's leaning toward purple. This had virtually no figurative language at all, and it felt flat to me, like I wanted some attention on the actual art of
Deanna Ogle
Feb 01, 2020 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2020-books
"No Parking" is a sweet little novel where small town values and queer folks exist in harmony. Marianne, the protagonist, runs a bakery that has been owned by her family for multiple generations. Her customers have difficulty accessing the parking lot, which she thinks is the fault of the neighboring business, but when the two owners get snowed in together, they find out something more sinister is at work that threatens everything they've built.

There is a tender romance that blooms as Marianne a
Feb 04, 2020 rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Feb 08, 2020 rated it it was ok
When I requested an arc of this (which I received, thank you!) i had no idea this novel featured two leads nearing 60! It was a pleasant surprise and the book certainly had all sorts of representation. The small town in this book certainly had a lot of diversity, especially on the lgbt front, which is always great to see, but the characters felt flat and one dimensional and the legal drama with their landlord was something that just felt tedious to me. I found myself largely skimming most of tha ...more
Chris breeh
Mar 16, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Wow. 5/5 Stars. I loved this book so much it picked up a little slow but it was worth it.

This book is LGBT+ based on the people in the book which i loved so much just reading all the queer stuff in this book made my little gay heart happy 😭🥺

Its about a woman who runs a bakery shop and is having problems with the lot and running into problems with the town. And she decides to take matters in her own hands and look into all the info about the bakery and lot etc. So much happened and i loved how t
May 31, 2020 rated it liked it
There was so much to love in this novel, at least for me. Several queer characters, small talk politics, older women falling in love. I just wish there was more of all of these things and less of everything else, especially as everything else is just filler prose. There were so many passages where the author reiterated a bunch of things we already knew--how Marianne felt about Rana, how friendship was enough, how she wasn't willing to rock the boat, how her father and the father of her nemesis g ...more
Feb 02, 2020 rated it it was amazing
This unapologetically queer little book is a really great look at the tension between thinking you're just living and working somewhere and actually being part of the community, and how sometimes the latter can sneak up on you. The book also took the unusual (in fiction) tack of letting its characters actually get along with their exes (not completely -- I mean, you can still see why they're not together anymore -- but more than a lot of media would have you think is possible). This made them fe ...more
Apr 21, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: romance, lgbtq
Sweet, low stakes romance. 50-something characters in some kind of queer utopia of a small New England town. So chock full of representation that it feels a little artificial, but also charming. I definitely would retire to (or vacation in) this small town and eat all of the food. (So much food in this novel!)

The parking lot/building ownership plot felt a little pat in its resolution, and I was disappointed that some of the plot threads raised about the history of the bakery were left unexplored
Ollie Z Book Minx
Very cute small town romance with older biromantic protagonists (one asexual) and loads of queer content! There’s a bit of a mystery that comes in about a third of the way through and kinda takes over the story—it was interesting but I hadn’t realised this would be a mystery and I wanted a bit more on the romance side of things, as I’ve never been a huge fan of stories where there’s a lot of “will they/won’t they” that could easily be resolved with a conversation. Because of that, some of this d ...more
Beth Younge
This was an interesting lesbian romance as it focused in older characters and most ones i've read focus on those who are thirty and older. I loved the relationship and it's up and downs but the whole subplot regarding who owned the land i didn't really need and i just wanted more pure romance rather than that drama. It felt unnecessary and like tacking on a plot as the story felt it was missing something otherwise.

I received this book from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.
Feb 10, 2020 rated it really liked it
I received an ARC of No Parking by Valentine Wheeler and was instantly intrigued by the description. Older main characters, bi and ace characters, they’re snowed in together? I’ll pick that up! And No Parking delivered. I found it a delightful read that had me cackling with delight as legal shenanigans and small town drama were added to the mix. Absolutely pick this up for a nice romance read.
Jan 04, 2021 added it
I want to move to Swanley!

This was such an engaging book. I live in a small town but it is nothing like this!
I read the whole book this morning because I couldn't put it down. I really want to live there and be friends with these folks
and eat at that bakery.
Can't wait to start the next book, Give Way.
Feb 18, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2020
This book was about a town with a little romance thrown in. I felt like I jumped into the book and new each location and character. The only downside is some of story dragged on, but overall it was a good read.
Doris Raines
Feb 18, 2020 rated it liked it
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Valentine (she/her) lives in Boston, where she goes by Lis and spends her time citing obscure postal regulations and arguing with a preschooler. She writes queer joy, often with a speculative twist, and always full of bisexuals.

She serves as Logistics and Fiction Editor for Wizards in Space Literary Magazine, and her work can be found at The Future Fire and Ninestar Press.

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