A secret crush. A mix-up in paperwork. And suddenly, a fake marriage that lands two women in one hotel room–and face to face with their denial. After six months of simmering attraction, librarians Sofiya Anderson and Molly Andersen are ready to burst. There’s a magnetism between them that threatens their commitment to professionalism, and not even a librarian’s stern shushing can quiet it down. But they’ve managed to hold themselves in check…for now. Until a mistake at a regional conference, a tiny oversight in spelling, makes the coordinators believe they’re a married couple. Two women. One bed. And a Mrs. Mix-Up that doesn’t quite go by the books. Can they make it through four days of professional development with both their hearts and their jobs intact
Mrs. Mix Up is a high heat, low conflict novel featuring a demiromantic lesbian and alloromantic lesbian pairing.
This isn't so much "woke" as it is "I've been up all night with the jitters and I'm just fine! No really, I'm great! so leave me alone only I've got some things to say so here are my words!" By which I mean that the author comes across as wanting to cram as much of the queer spectrum as she can into a story, along with explanations and definitions and don't forget to model the perfect responses to someone coming out so that your protagonist is as sympathetic as possible. It is very earnest, but then, you don't have to go past the very long Author's Note at the beginning to see what you are signing up for. So I wasn't surprised.
Which is kind of bad because I kind of liked the idea of two people forced to share intimate space due to a misreading of their conference booking and all the self-conscious spectrum-mapping was definitely in the way. Room shenanigans at a conference are a bit farfetched, but in an interesting way. And if the author had taken pains to actually get there, it might have worked. I dunno. I bailed when I felt like the author was taking her own sweet time dawdling along with friends and inconsequential events and the intrusive pastry chef that kept cropping up so the author could use "they/them" in real sentences. Which was doubly awkward because the author wasn't terribly steady on tenses anyway, with enough mistakes to pull my attention (I'm not terribly attentive so if I noticed, it has to have been pretty egregious).
I dunno, I want to say that spending 10% of your book space on coming out to one another is excessive, but what do I know about coming out? I mean, I didn't figure out I was bisexual until well into my 30s and it never occurred to me that I should "come out" about it. That doesn't sound right. Let's just say that I didn't so much come out of a closet as I stood there swinging the door open and shut exclaiming "Hey, there's this closet here, isn't that interesting?" So my perspective on that is skewed is what I'm saying, and it makes it hard for me to see it be this big trust-building production*.
Sorry. What I was getting to before the overshare is that this may find its audience with those who very much want a spectrum of queer characters interacting in ideal ways and making connections with each other. Personally, I found it didactic and way too enthusiastic and stopped before 20%...
* Real life conversation. me - "Honey, I think I'm probably bisexual" Melissa - ". . . That makes sense."
2.7 stars This book was just okay for me. I liked the premise of the book, but the story was a bit too slow for me and there were too many unnecessary details that I think were there just to educate the reader or to reflect the views of the writer. That’s not necessarily a bad thing, if it doesn’t distract from the story or makes it too longwinded like it sometimes did in this book. I liked the main characters Sofiya and Molly and the build up of their connection, which because Molly is a demiromantic lesbian, was a bit different than usual in lesfic. I liked that. The mains also had nice friends. They can’t however be called supporting characters, because these friends didn’t really have a purpose in the telling of this story, except maybe for Molly’s friend and sister giving information about Molly’s identification as demiromantic. Sofiya’s friend Claudia just seemed to be in the story to put them there. My last point is that this book needs editing. Not only was it difficult to detect sometimes to which main character a passage was alluding, but words were misspelled and sometimes missing. Also after using sentences in past perfect tense the next sentences in the same scene/paragraph were sometimes in the present tense. These things made the writing uneven. So, nice characters and nice premise but the execution of the story could have been better. 2.7 stars which rounds up to 3 in the Goodreads system
Very modern word usage, more geared toward generation Z's. Made reading it feel rather tedious. I also hated the authors attempt to call anyone older and who do take issue with these terms 'gatekeepers'. So ultimately I couldn't get involved since I felt like I was just being spoken down to like a child by a yuppie with a thesaurus of new words to hit us over the head with, instead of telling the freaking story!
The premise was really promising. I was very interested to know how the story would play out. It was short and sweet, but I had a difficult time finishing it because of how slowly the story developed. The characters were likable, so that really helped.
I appreciate that the author wrote many scenes involving the main characters to help develop their friendship. However, I also thought that there were a lot of unnecessary scenes written in. It’s not a slow-burn book, per se, but more of a slow-paced story. It could get a bit frustrating because of this.
The writing was good, but I did spot a few errors. Sometimes the POV will change from third person to first person in the same chapter. I’ll give this 2.75-3 stars. :)
A three arms, five hands experience. [Feel free to see my shared highlights (with commentary!) if you think I'm exaggerating any of this.] What even was this? I finally put it down at 75% finished, and I don't expect to ever complete this book. Was it edited at all? There are sentences that are just halfway finished, sometimes running into a completely unrelated sentence. Tenses change. Very difficult to keep up with who is saying what (I suspect perspectives are changing also). Time is irrelevant, because on the first night of the conference, sometimes it's the third night, and I think one character wears three different outfits, having seemingly not changed more than once? Honestly, I had to do so much work keeping up with the story because of the lack of editing that it was hard to enjoy what's there. The premise was great, the execution didn't do it for me. Save your time. Life's too short to read unedited books.
Also, lots of inconsistencies between the TWO author's profiles in the book, and the myriad of them online. In this day and age I'm not sure if any of it is true or if it's all a fiction (pen names are one thing, this is another), and I'd rather get virtually no information on the author in such a situation.
Finally i finished this. I have never been happier. I couldn't get into this book at all. I dont feel the chemistry between characters. There were some parts that just feel rush and why do i feel like there were too many drawled? There were too many unecessary information just like Eske's review mentioned. And Sofiya's presentation near the end of the book, sound like she just went up there and said 2 sentences and come back down. I have to reread that part a bit because i thought i missed some detail. Turned out she just said 2 sentences, i guess. And i also skimmed most of the second half of the book.
It's cute, sexy, a bit funny and very romantic, which is ironic since I wanted to read it because of the aromantic representation. Romance is not my thing so 3 stars from me. But a nice read and aromantic representation is always good.
I have mixed feelings about this book. On the one hand, it was an easy, quick read. On the other hand, there were some things that confused me and interrupted my flow. It occasionally diverts from 3rd person to 1st which was kind of distracting and there were some other things a good editing could have cleaned up.
Two librarians who work together are attracted to one another. Molly is newer to the job, in her mid-20s, Black, and aromantic attracted to women. Sofiya is about 10 to 15 years older, white, and lesbian. At least half the book takes place before the conference and hotel room mix up, and there is quite a bit about their library activities which helped develop their feelings about one another. Sofiya finds Molly alluring, even after Molly explains her sexuality. Sofiya is very careful to be respectful of Molly’s needs but neither was really forthcoming for quite a while. There was a lot of “was that OK?” between them. As the novel progressed, both found it easier to be frank with each other. It ends happily, without any real issues. There is some humor, especially with secondary characters, and an antagonist but it’s basically a cute feel-good story.
If you ever thought that reading about protecting a library's funding would be boring, please think again. Candace Harper's Mrs. Mix Up is an incredibly sexy, exciting story about an unlikely couple coming together to protect their community's most valuable asset.
A demiromantic lead character made this interesting and different. Talk about spoilers, though, the Author's Note and trigger points at yhe top of the book told the whole story, including the end! Bizzare. Understandable, but bizzare.
Not great, unfortunately. The tropey elements that made me interested in reading (they have similar last names and accidentally get signed up as wives to a library conference) barely had any page time, the writing was all over the place, and it either wasn't edited or a draft copy was accidentally uploaded. There were placeholders, unfinished sentences, abrupt switches from third to first person POV...
It's a shame. The concept is cute, the characters had promise, and it was nice reading about a demiromantic lesbian.
This is pretty info-dumpy and it’s just not gripping me. That’s not necessarily the book’s fault—current circumstances mean I really need to be grabbed by the story from the start or else it’s not going to work. I wanted this to start with the mix up referenced in the blurb but it feels a long way off and I don’t have the patience to hang in there.
Character notes: Sofiya is a 43 year old white lesbian reference librarian. Molly is a Black demiromantic lesbian children’s librarian—no age given as of 25% but she’s much younger than Sofiya. This is set in Chatham, VA.
Hello, friends! I'm the author and I hope you enjoy Mrs. Mix Up! I wanted to add these content warnings here to make them easily accessible for potential readers!
Sexual: Female masturbation with a sex toy, mention of watching porn, descriptions of cunnilingus and penetration with fingers without condom, and dirty talk.
Non-sexual: Threatened employment, mention of unfriendly divorce of minor character, minor discussion of parental cancer scare in past, mentions of aro-antagonist behavior from other queer people, visiting a queer club, coming out as demiromantic, description of a near miss car accident, forced proximity, jealousy, accidental nudity in forced proximity, mentions of queerphobia, mentions of racism, and mentions of sexism.
Diversity with regard to race, sex and romantic type are well addressed in this story. There is also an upfront section with trigger warnings for readers sensitive to a number of issues.
The setup has the makings of a fun tale. That said there are sections that read like a log of activities completed rather than a chronicle of a developing relationship. This made it difficult to fully appreciate the chemistry between the main characters. Another pass by an editor would not be amiss.
I read this for the canon demiromantic character, and for the most part I wasn't disapponted. It talks about how the characters approach their relationship seperately because of it. However, I wish there had been more exploration of Molly's developing feelings throughout. More than once, it's mentioned that she might actually be uncomfortable with those feelings, but it's never more than briefly mentioned.
I LOVE that this book mentions queerplatonic relationships/queerplatonic attraction. It's not really part of the story, just briefly thrown out as a possibility of what Molly feels for Sofiya, but it's so rarely mentioned by name, and I love to see it.
My least favorite thing about this book is how cartoonishly evil every single male character who appears is. Discussing misogyny and microagressions is totally valid, but this clue-by-foury way of doing it is not good. My particular "favorite" scene is where the main characters harrass (and basically go all "Karen" on) a convention employee for a mistake that he wasn't even responsible for, and it's treated as an empowering feminist moment ("Molly had never cared less about a man's feelings.")
The story was well written and mostly well edited. The plot was interesting and the characters well developed. I downloaded this book expecting and hoping for those things, and not much more.
As an asexual aromantic Black trans nonbinary lesbian, I rarely see so many aspects of myself reflected back at me in fiction. So, it was a surprise in the best kind when I stumbled across this book. Rarely do I find Black characters so well represented by white/non-black authors, and it was great to find a nonbinary character without the trappings of explanations about their identity overshadowing their personality. Finally, an aromantic character's struggle with understanding their emotions regarding a lover and close friend was something I deeply identify with, and I thought it was a great example of one of the many ways this can look.
To the author: thank you. What you're doing is important and deeply appreciated.
Pleasant and entertaining story of a mid-20’s black lesbian developing a relationship with her early 50’s white gay coworker. Both ladies are librarians and have worked together for about a year. Through their work together and together attending a trade conference, their sexual and romantic association develops into true love. With a mix up at the conference with their name tags being tagged MRS> rather than MS. And them being assigned a single bed room, they are thought to be married. This leads to intimates situations and thay fall in love with each other. The story also ends with a really happy ending. I found the book informative and enlightening about gay labels, intimate activities, names and sexual orientation of the LGBT community.
This was the first book I read by this author and the topic of aromanticism was also a new one for me. I honestly had no idea that this even exists and learned so much by reading this book. And even if I don’t know how it feels having those feelings everything made sense to me. I especially loved how both MC‘s talked about everything and just how they were together. The chemistry was just perfect. There were some grammatical issues and once it switched from the third to the first person which was a bit confusing. But all in all I definitely recommend this book and it won’t be the last one for me by this author.
I got a free copy by the author for an honest review.
I have read many novels about life. This is the first one I have read about aromanticism. Marley and Sophia develop feelings for one another while they work in the library. Molly is an aromantic which means she may develop feelings but not romantic ones. This book develops around the relationship between the tune and the ups and downs they both must face while wanting to be together. I find it's a very lovely book and I encourage everyone who likes romance to read it
Molly and Sofiya are two characters very intuned into their emotions and wishes but it does not make their story boring. Their jobs play an integral part of the plot and are more than just a background setting. Their town feels lived in, they have friends and interests which complement the journey. Some of the side characters were a bit tropey and wished some discussions surrounding their relationship status happened sooner but overall it was nice to just bask in this happy story.
This was a new experience for me as the topic was one I had never encountered before. I found it highly interesting as well as educating, I have never met anyone described with this problem beforeso it piqued my interest. It was handled very delicately and very sweetly. The age and race issues were never even addressed which I found refreshing. Overall this book was educational as well as a great book to read. Thank you for sharing this with me.
I love it when a well written engaging story also enlightens me. A glimpse into another life is a precious thing and I value the glimpses I got into a type of love I was unfamiliar with. Thank you Candace for this story. Tact and tenderness permeated everything and it was a quick and enjoyable read. I highly recommend this. Without a few editing flaws I would have given 5 stars, but the story itself is 5!
This was a fast read and I enjoyed the premise of a demiromantic character. However, the book needed a lot of editing, it randomly changed from 3rd person to 1st person, typos were prevalent throughout and unfinished sentences made it hard to really follow the flow of the story. There were also some scenes where it wrote like a practiced therapy session versus a conversation between potential lovers.
1.5 I am not sure what I read here. No real build up, no real chemistry between these two MC and a lot of filler paragraphs which I started to skip at some point. After it took apparently some time for these two to act on their attraction it went really fast in the end and in my opinion in complete disregard of a statement from one MC in the beginning. And apparently all men are bad...
DNF around 30%, but I'm not rating it. From what I read and the other full review of this book, it needed a good edit. I basically gave up because nothing was happening and I didn't get the feeling much was GOING to happen. We are given the basics from the blurb and the set up in the beginning, but I wasn't drawn in. Maybe things started to get interesting when they got to the conference.
Two libertarians in a small town in southern state fight to love each other in a very Republican led government. It didn't help to have a very homophobic government leader trying to threaten them. Do they follow the law? Enjoy!