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Midnight in Manhattan #4

She'll Steal Your Heart

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A thief seeking redemption forms an unlikely connection with a former lawyer looking for a fresh start of her own, but what starts as friendship soon feels like much more…

Last year, Lauren Booker fled New York with a warrant out for her arrest. Now she’s back and ready to make amends for her crime. She wants to rebuild her life, and Brooklyn is home. There’s not much waiting for her here now, though, nothing except an online friend who’s brought her so much joy during one of the hardest years of her life. When they finally meet in person, Lauren’s unprepared for her attraction to Mia, but she’s even less prepared to discover that Mia has an unexpected connection to her crime, putting Lauren’s plans in jeopardy.

Mia Solano has also had a difficult year. Recently divorced, she walked away from her legal career after a health scare caused her to reexamine her priorities. Now Mia owns a cat café, and she’s struggling to adjust to a slower pace of life. She finds an unlikely friend in Lauren, but Lauren’s legal troubles force Mia to revisit a part of her life she’s trying to leave behind. She can’t explain why she’s so drawn to Lauren. They shouldn’t have much in common, and yet, they just seem to click.

As the connection between them strengthens, Lauren and Mia wrestle with growing feelings, but neither wants to risk their friendship by crossing that line. With Lauren’s court date looming ever closer, they might lose everything, including each other.

First published October 19, 2022

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About the author

Rachel Lacey

36 books1,294 followers
Rachel Lacey is an award-winning contemporary romance author and semi-reformed travel junkie. She's been climbed by a monkey on a mountain in Japan, gone scuba diving on the Great Barrier Reef, and camped out overnight in New York City for a chance to be an extra in a movie. These days, the majority of her adventures take place on the pages of the books she writes. She lives in the mountains of Vermont with her family and a variety of rescue pets.

Rachel loves to keep in touch with her readers! You can find her at:

Rachel Lacey Facebook
Twitter @rachelslacey

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5 stars
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Displaying 1 - 30 of 74 reviews
Profile Image for Jude in the Stars.
876 reviews513 followers
October 28, 2022

Okay, let’s be clear from the beginning: this book not only stole my heart, it also stole my breath. Which is exactly what I look for in books. God, the longing. The pining. Feelings, people, so many feelings. Also, collarbones. Hot.

If you’ve read the first book in the Midnight in Manhattan series, Don’t Cry for Me, you already know Lauren Booker. If you haven’t, close this page and go get the book, you’re about to be spoiled. She’ll Steal Your Heart is set a year after Lauren disappeared. She’s finally coming back to Manhattan to make things right. But first, she’ll allow herself one carefree weekend, meeting online friends IRL for the first time, binging the new season of the show that brought them together, In Her Defense, starring Piper Sheridan from Come Away With Me (book 3). One of these friends is a bit older than the rest of the group, a bit less of a fangirl. Mia Solano, whose marriage ended after eighteen years, also quit her job as a lawyer after a burnout and is now the owner of a cat café.

Lauren and Mia are so lovely, so perfect for each other that my heart is all soft and warm and every corny feeling you can think of. She’ll Steal Your Heart is the perfect book to conclude the Midnight in Manhattan series, with references to all the previous ones and more.

On a personal note, just like Piper’s panic attacks in Come Away with Me felt very real to me, I can relate all too well to Mia’s post-burnout anxiety. “What if I fall back into old habits?” is a question I ask my therapist (and my wife) at least once a month. It’s been seven years and I still miss the adrenaline of the job I loved but felt was killing me. So yeah, I understand Mia’s fears and know how important it is to know you have unconditional support from the woman you love when faced with hard choices.

As for Lauren, despite all the hardship she has had to endure, she’s not bitter, not blasé, she has hope in the future and in humanity and it could be too much but it simply works. She and Mia are two women looking for a second chance at life, not so much at love, even though they’ll get that as well, but at fulfilling who they know they can be. It’s inspiring, it’s exciting, it brought me so much joy because even though I know it’s fiction, Lacey writes it in a way that is also very relatable.

On top of cameos by characters from previous books, there are a few new secondary characters, some of which I wouldn’t mind reading more about, and, as always in Rachel Lacey’s books, cats that will, too, steal your heart. Lots of cats, including a very shy one I would have loved to meet for real. Thanks to all these cats, I didn’t have to think long about what I wanted on the graphic for this review (if you're reading this review on a platform that won't let me share the image, go to my blog for the real deal). Ginny is always trying to help and this time, she got to stay. Which made both of us happy.

If there weren’t so many promising books being released all the time, I’d probably would have reread this one right away. I’ll just have to wait a few months for the audiobook to come out and give me an excuse to enjoy this story and the characters for a bit longer.

I received a copy from the publisher and I am voluntarily leaving a review.

Read all my reviews on my blog (and please buy from the affiliation links!): Jude in the Stars
Profile Image for Laura.
154 reviews37 followers
November 29, 2022
Lauren Booker did not endear herself to me with her appearance in book one of this series, Don’t Cry for Me. She upset my girl, Josie, and I don’t forgive anyone who does that. I knew Rachel Lacey would work her magic and I would end up forgiving her, but I didn’t expect that she would touch my heart more than any of Rachel’s other characters. Maybe it’s because we have something very painful in common or it may just be because I love how Lauren is determined to make things right. And given how life has continuously knocked her down, I appreciate how she keeps getting back up and moving forward.

Mia Solano is also at a crossroads. She recently left her successful law career, got divorced and opened a cat cafe. She knows she needs to get back to living and meets up with her online friends to watch the new season of their favorite show. Mia is pretty perfect. I love how she carries herself and the calm she projects, even if internally her mind is racing. What impresses me the most about Mia is how she looks beyond Lauren’s issues and really “sees” her.

With She’ll Steal your Heart, Rachel Lacey continues to show why she is so successful and one of our best writers. In Lauren, she gives us a character I will be thinking about for quite a while. She is flawed but given her history, the fact she is still standing, shows the strength she has inside. Rachel writes her characters with such care, as if they are fragile friends, she just wants to hold close. The romance that develops is years in the making, while the two chat online about their favorite tv show and Mia reads Lauren’s fanfic. They share details about their lives and when they finally meet, the feelings that have been developing over years evolve so naturally.

This is the fourth book in the series and it was lovely to see some familiar faces make appearances. While I have a special place in my heart for Don’t Cry for Me, this is my favorite of the series. It made me tear up several times because things hit a bit close to home but more than anything it made me feel hopeful and it made me smile a lot. I love to see characters overcome adversity to find happiness and experience growth both individually and as a couple. This is a book I will revisit many times.

An ARC was received from the author for an honest review.

Profile Image for Simone11.
179 reviews3 followers
November 8, 2022
Wonderful conclusion to this series and all the MCs from the previous books are also a part of this book.
I enjoyed the two MCs personalities and their development very much.
Especially Lauren had to overcome her criminal past to embrace a better future and Mia is right by her side the whole time. And also Mia had to revaluate some choices she made in the past.
It’s a very well written friends-to-lovers age-gap romance.
Highly recommend.
Profile Image for AnnMaree Of Oz.
1,502 reviews65 followers
November 8, 2022
Kindle Unlimited.

This is a great solid lesfic series. In this one there are quite a few references to the previous couples from the series - and the MC here had featured slightly in book 1 for a time - So I would recommend reading them in order, I do believe they are all available on KU.

This installment was just as excellent as the others. I love that in this series the women have realistic and relatable issues but actually work on them and TALK about them! The communication is perfect and exactly what I want from my romances. I very much dislike miscommunication and needless drama, and these don't do that - so if you're like me and want more substance and realism in your lesfic romance stories, give this series a try!!!

This installment features an age-gap, Lauren is 29 and had a past in foster care that made her grow up quickly but lonely, and a little brother who had issues that she tried to take care of. She's alone now, but has regrets and past mistakes she is coming back to Brooklyn to atone for.
We meet Mia, 42, who had been married for a long time and was overworking herself in her law career. She now owns and runs a cat cafe, and is doing a lot better physically and mentally, but still feels something missing.

The two women form a lovely connection and supportive friendship that leads to more. It was just nice to see them get that chance at happiness with one another and get that healthy supportive relationship that they deserved with each other.

Very swoon-worthy, and just ticks all the right boxes for romance. Highly Recommend this entire series.
Profile Image for Katie.
96 reviews
November 7, 2022
This was a lovely age gap romance. My first by this author.
I’ll definitely be checking out her other books.
Profile Image for Victoria.
343 reviews49 followers
October 29, 2022
I always wonder what the deal is with Lauren in Don't Cry for Me; the robbery seems so out of the blue. So I am happy we have her redemption in the final book of Midnight in Manhattan's series. Although it is not what I expected of Lauren's redemption. It's fluffy and low angsty. Overall, it makes you feel good and smile the whole time. It's the perfect ending for this series.
Profile Image for Sam.
764 reviews85 followers
November 20, 2022
This is the conclusion of the Midnight in Manhattan series, while all the books could be read as standalone I would advise on reading them in order. Actually for this book I’d say it is necessary.

We’ve met Lauren in Don’t Cry for Me, the first book in the series, and let’s just say she didn’t leave the best of impressions, she was a bit of a villain. So, that raises the question, can a villain be redeemed? I’d say they could, but only if the author does it the right way. Lacey does it the way it’s supposed to. She humanises Lauren, gives her a good backstory, and redemption story. Not to mention Mia, a former lawyer and now cat cafe owner. She is recovering from a burn out and getting over her divorce of her wife of 18 years. These beautifully flawed humans connect because of fanfic that Lauren wrote about a show they adore. The show that Piper from Come Away with Me plays the lead in. This is how we check in with yet another couple of the series, our Broadway stars also make an appearance in the cat cafe. Oh and did I mention the cats? Rachel Lacey writes the most adorable cats! I really liked the shy one in this book, I would like to adopt him.

This book is emotional and lovely. The way the author writes about recovering from a burn out seems like it is so real. Lauren dealing with her charges, her loss and getting her life in order, it’s so real and heartwarming and maybe even a bit heartbreaking. The longing between these friends, oh my it is just endless and amazing!

This is a great end to a lovely series. All the couples have a check in, we get a lot of cats and so many happy endings. I’m even a little sad to see this series come to an end, however great it may be, I’ll miss these characters. I’d say it’s a job well done by Rachel Lacey.
Profile Image for Lesbereading.
112 reviews52 followers
October 22, 2022
So many amazing things to say about She’ll Steal Your Heart. First off, Lauren and Mia were perfect. The sparks, you could literally feel them - they were that intense. Second, Mia’s cat cafe sounds like a dream. And finally, I absolutely loved the way the other books in the series were tied into this story. Between Lauren, Mia and their friends geeking out about In Her Defense and Lauren writing fanfic, and then Josie and Eve too, so good. What a perfect way to end the series. Highly recommend reading all of the books in the Midnight in Manhattan series and doing so in order.

Thank you to Rachel Lacey for reaching out and providing the arc for an honest review!
Profile Image for Menestrella.
236 reviews7 followers
November 25, 2022
I absolutely loved She'll Steal Your Heart, what more apt title for a book. Lauren did steal my heart and I kept cheering for her throughout the pages.

Talk about redeeming a character? Woah! She's now one of my fav characters of the whole Manhattan series.

She'll Steal Your Heart has so many tropes in it that it will appeal to anyone. From friends to lovers, coming back to town, forced proximity... it has it all!

I particularly enjoyed the whole fandom theme, the big group of online friends meeting in real life for the first time, and the zoom-in in the life of an indie self-published author... and the Twitter community? Fingers crossed on this!

Lauren deserved a second chance, she has made mistakes but her heart is in the right place. She's a society made caregiver, always doing what's best for the others and forgetting herself, and I was so happy when she met Mia and found finally a safe harbor.

Lauren and Mia complete each other on so many levels. Mia finally believes in love again and is not alone anymore, and Lauren has found her way through life.

The cameos of Sophie and Jules, Josie and Eve, and Chloe and Piper were the cherry on top!

I adored that all the novels of the series were filled with pets, and especially cats.

Lola... made me laugh out loud... and not only the cat version... but also you know what!

5 stars at least! Mia... hot lawyer... oef!!! 🤣
Profile Image for SJ.
58 reviews14 followers
September 10, 2023
OH MY GOD! I absolutely love this entire series and She’ll Steal Your Heart could not have been a more perfect ending! This is officially one of my all time favorite series and is one that I see myself rereading in the future (probably more than once). I loved every book in this series but She’ll Steal Your Heart might possibly be my favorite (it’s a close call between this one and Don’t Cry For Me). It was a second chance story, but not in terms of romance. Both main characters, Lauren Booker and Mia Solano, are trying to get a fresh start in life and in many ways start over - but for very different reasons.

Lauren is trying to make amends for her past mistakes and take responsibility for them after having been on the run for a year, while also dealing with the recent death of her brother. Mia recently got divorced and went from being a powerful attorney to a cat cafe owner. I related a lot with Mia’s character and the overwhelming existential crisis that comes from multiple life changes happening all at once.

Mia and Lauren are in a group of online friends that met because of Lauren’s sapphic fanfic for In Her Defense (from book 3, Come Away with Me), finally meeting in person to celebrate the new season. When Mia discovers Lauren’s secret about her past, she decides to help her-both legally and with a job.

Their friendship is so pure and endearing and just warms your heart. Mia worries that she’s too old. Lauren worries that her life is too much of a mess. They both worry about ruining the friendship thinking they must be the only one having these feelings. But as their friendship continues to grow, those feelings get harder to ignore. Their relationship is both sweet and sexy and I adore them. They truly are perfect for each other.

And the ending! I won’t share spoilers, but OMG! So many surprises, so much love, all the feels! 🥹😍🥰🥳

Also, Lori Prince is fantastic! Her narration for this whole series was incredible and very consistent! She is definitely one of the greats in my book! Do the audiobooks if you can. But PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE - read this series! It is sooo good!
Profile Image for emily.
615 reviews74 followers
December 6, 2022
Awww I loved this. I’m sad to see this series end, bc I’ve rlly loved all of it. But I can’t wait to re-read it all when the rest come out in audiobook form, I can already picture some of Lori Prince’s performance for some of these and I can’t wait to see how it plays out.

This one was lovely. Not quite what I expected it to be, but I rlly enjoyed myself. Both Mia and Lauren are super lovable and easy to root for, and I loved the slow burn pace of their dynamic of merging from friends to lovers. And i LOVED the little bits of cameos we got from all the other couples in the series. Especially Josie and Eve, I think they are still my favs overall and seeing them rlly get their happy ending was adorable, esp with how full circle Lauren’s role is in it.

I can’t rec this series enough and I already can’t wait to re read it. Def one of my fav sapphic series out there I think.
Profile Image for Michelle  Schuler.
602 reviews5 followers
March 18, 2023
She'll Steal Your Heart

I love the depth of this book by Rachel Lacey. I enjoyed this series very much and will be rereading the entire series again. I love the references to previous characters from the other books. Its great to see a snap shot in their lives. I look forward to more books by this author in the future.
Profile Image for ⚜️XAR the Bookwyrm.
2,318 reviews17 followers
January 7, 2023

This book, by far, was my favorite of the series!!! I loved the redemption story arc, and the tenderness between the two heroines in this story! Having read the previous books in the series over a year ago, I thought I would be lost by such a secondary character taking center stage, but I was happily, very wrong about that!! Ms. Lacey did an excellent job of putting details into the story that were logical to have in this current read, but were also reminders of what had happened previously in the series. In that way, it came off as a totally fresh read, and not a rehashing of events to catch folks up. This one actually made me want to read, during a depressive time where I've been in a reading slump! I'm sad to see these characters and this series go, but what a way to send them off!!
Profile Image for Kate.
277 reviews3 followers
May 29, 2023
Proper gooey emotional stuff. This book is chock full of callbacks to the previous three books in the series, most of which I entirely failed to notice. In other words, you don’t need to read the other books first, your heart will still be stolen.
95 reviews
October 30, 2022
Super excellent book

I loved this story so much. My heart went out to Lauren and I embraced the idea of her and Mia and just loved it.
Profile Image for Regis L.
62 reviews8 followers
November 1, 2022
She’ll Steal Your Heart might be my favorite book in the Midnight in Manhattan series. It follows two online friends who meet in person to celebrate a new season of the show that brought them together. Mia is an ex-lawyer who runs a cat cafe and Lauren is returning to Brooklyn after being away for a year. Both women come with baggage, Mia is recently divorced and went through a career change, and Lauren is looking to make amends for robbing Josie in Don’t Cry For Me (the first book in the series) and not go to jail. Mia agrees to help Lauren with her legal troubles and the two grow closer.

I loved this book so much. It’s the perfect swoony friends-to-lovers, age-gap, slow burn romance. Mia and Lauren have chemistry from their first in person meeting and their journey from becoming friends to more is *chef’s kiss*. Besides the baggage Mia and Lauren have, the book is pretty low angst, so you can enjoy the two women slowly growing closer and falling in love. As a huge fan of this series, I loved seeing couples from the previous books make an appearance, especially Piper and Chloe. And being a huge nerd, the use of fandom and fan fiction throughout the book made my heart happy.

If you’re looking for a book with cute cats and a romance with sizzling yearning with the best payoff, then I highly recommend She’ll Steal Your Heart and the entire Midnight in Manhattan series.
Profile Image for Andrea Demara.
16 reviews
June 5, 2023
I think this story was my favorite one in the Midnight series. The chemistry between Lauren and Mia was hot, and the build-up of sexual tension made for an exciting read. I adored the ending, and loved seeing so many of the past characters’ lives intertwine with each other. This book made me proud to be a member of the LGBTQ community.
Profile Image for Chloe.
62 reviews
December 28, 2022
Lauren is ready to make amends for past mistakes, but she’s less prepared for receiving help, especially from her online-turned-in-person friend Mia. As the women grow to rely on each other, their friendship blossoms into something deeper…with the help of a fictional legal drama and some irresistible rescue cats.

She’ll Steal Your Heart is a beautiful story of redemption, friendship, love, and hope. Lauren and Mia are compelling characters who are each on a challenging journey, and their unlikely relationship unfolds with an entertaining mixture of warmth, passion, and a little humor. Because of all these elements, it’s easy to be so drawn into Mia and Lauren’s story that you’re laughing and crying right along with them.

Additionally, with catchup scenes for all of the chief characters from the previous three books, She’ll Steal Your Heart is a heartwarming and satisfying conclusion to the Midnight in Manhattan series.
Profile Image for Francesca.
51 reviews7 followers
December 29, 2022
Im so sad this series is over now. I’ll admit I shed a tear. This book was by far my favourite and I mean I don’t partially like age gap trope so going into this I thought it wouldn’t be as good as the other three. I was proven wrong however as I did in fact fall in love with the characters of both Lauren and Mia.
Profile Image for Arley.
356 reviews35 followers
October 21, 2022
Thank you to the author for the opportunity to read this advanced reader copy. This honest review was based off my experience reading this eARC, which in no way biased me. All opinions are my own.

This is my 6th book I’ve read from Rachel Lacey, I first discovered her books through her Ms. Right series back in like February. I have read all the books in the Midnight In Manhattan series. I would like to say, yes they are stand-alones and can be read separately or out of order, BUT I would recommend you do read them, and in order. The couples from the earlier books make cameos throughout, and I believe you will have a better experience if you know the back story.

Like for example, one of the FMCs in this book is actually a pretty big character in book 1, and honestly I didn’t read the books back to back so I had briefly forgotten that she was in book 1. I was reading and I was like ok she’s a criminal? What did she do? And then it hit me and everything started to make sense.

And like to get the fascination with the In Her Defense show (and fanfic) you should probably read book 3 for this to make sense.

This had some fun tropes to work with:
Age Gap (13 years)
Slow burn
(Internet friends to in person) Friends to Lovers
But it also included some pretty heavy themes. Mentions of a family member with addiction, a family member death via overdose, negligent parent, divorce, homophobic parent, and I am sure I am missing some.

I had a good time, its not my favorite in this series but it was good. 3.5 stars overall.
Profile Image for Kelsey Rae.
107 reviews1 follower
October 27, 2022
Lauren spent the last year running from her problems, including the robbery she committed to help her brother. Now she’s back to clean up the mess she made, but first she is going to meet up with the only friends she has left. Her online friends, and her fanfic writing, has kept her going the last year. Especially her friendship with, ex-lawyer and now Cat Cafe owner, Mia Solano. When they discover a shared connected to Lauren’s crime Mia has to revisit her old life to help.

For a book where the main character has a felony charge there is a surprisingly low about of angst. Lauren and Mia’s relationship is a classic friends to lovers tale. Mia is starting to live her life after a divorce and career change, and is able to offer help getting Lauren back on her feet. With uncertainty due to her legal issues, Lauren is able to care for Mia in different ways. Their friendship is loving, and the progression to a romantic relationship is almost a forgone conclusion.

I loved the representation of fandom in this book! Lauren’s path to becoming a published author reflects so many of the authors I love to read. Although now I want to know what fandoms Rachel Lacey is a part of.

Sidenote: I always appreciate the acknowledgments section of a book, and Lacey lays out exactly how this book came to be. Particularly in regard to its place in her book universe and the character profile changes throughout the outlining process.
Profile Image for Nadine Stamminger.
89 reviews1 follower
October 18, 2022
Okay hands down, this is my new favorite of the Midnight in Manhattan series and i loved all books of this series so far. We meet again with Lauren Booker who we briefly meet in the first book of the Midnight in Manhattan serie. I have do be honest i couldnt really remember her therefore i made a quick search within book 1 to refresh my brain. But you dont need to read the first book of the serie to understand this on its a total stand alone work.
After a year away Lauren goes back to Brooklyn, she is about to meet with her online friends to binge their favorite TV show. During this weekend she connects with one of the girls, Mia but Mia is also connected to her past, a past she is not proud of and which was the reason she left the city a year ago.
Both our main protagonists her have their struggels, we accompany them through these struggels during the book and see how a strangers become friend and so much more.

This is another amazing book from Rachel Lacey who by now is very far up on my favorite author list. I couldnt put away this book its so well written, interessting and the story is very well thought out. I snuggelt into my bed with a big pot of tea and read this one on a stormy sunday within one go - that kind of good it is.

I got an ARC from the author for an honest review.
822 reviews
September 16, 2023
Sweet and tender!

What a great addition and perfect ending to the Midnight in Manhattan series. I've enjoyed all of the books, but this one was so sincere and tender.

Lauren truly deserved a second chance after stealing money from Josie's bar and running away for an entire year. She was only trying to help her brother who owed money to a drug dealer and had been badly beaten. Now she's returned to make amends to Josie and turn herself into the police.

Mia has been divorced for a year from her wife of eighteen years. Both of them were competitive attorneys in the same law firm and were unable to stop their marriage from crumbling. Due to poor health, Mia quit her job and opened up a Cat Cafe to assist in adopting out cats.

Both women are compelling characters. They are part of an online chat group, meet in person when Lauren returns to town and very quickly become friends. Mia is a safe haven for Lauren and Lauren makes sure that Mia takes better control of her health.

She'll Steal Your Heart is a great title. It's a heartwarming story of friendship, love, sizzle, redemption and resilience. With visits from all our favorites from the previous books, it's a perfect ending to the series and the epilogue is so sweet! It's a truly beautiful story. Brava, Rachel!
Profile Image for Rachel.
72 reviews
December 28, 2022
It's not a secret that I'm a big fan of Rachel Lacey stories. The Read Between the Lines series was one of my favorites that I've read this year. There are a range of characters but she manages to sneak in little similarities and I love that.

Another big reason I loved this story so much is because there wasn't the huge blow up/break up fight near the end of the book. As someone who has read a bunch of romance novels over the past year, I've found that a common issue I have is that there is a big fight with less then 50 pages left and by the time they resolve it, the book is over. I'm someone who likes it when the 'big fight' happens, but then there is enough book left after to feel like we got an actually resolution and not a rushed passionate proclamation of love. Based The love that Mia and Lauren have for one another has such a deeply rooted foundation that was based on honesty and communication that it would've felt ingenuine if Lacey wrote them to have a big nasty fight. And I love that Lacey knew that and didn't feel the need to conform to traditional romance book formats.

I really enjoyed Mia's storyline regarding her career. We often see a character with a big fancy job get burnt out and start a more chill/laid back job and LOVE IT. However, Mia missed being a lawyer and wasn't really happy working at the cat cafe and I loved that Lacey wrote her storyline like that. Bucking from the norm allows readers to be able to relate to characters better.
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
Profile Image for Teddy.
206 reviews12 followers
October 28, 2022
Addictive. That’s what this series is. It’s so great to be reconnected to Dragonfly in this book, like reuniting with an old friend. Can someone please build this bar? I will come. As for the book, it was as delightful as the first three, and it was nice to see where those other characters are now. Well balanced between the romance and the tragic backstory that Lacey always nails. There was tension but low angst. A little syrupy but good chemistry and great communication. Fun to read about fan fiction and I always love a good author story. Worth the read!

Short summary: A thief no more, Lauren is determined to get back on her feet. She returns to NYC to make things right, but first she meets some online friends from her fanfic community for a weekend of pure fun. When she meets Mia in real life, the attraction is instant, but Lauren might be going to jail on Monday. Can she get her life in order enough to date, let alone attract 10+ years-older, former-lawyer-turned-cat-cafe-owner Mia? Is their friendship worth risking for the chance at something more?
Profile Image for Clara Addicted to sapphic books.
128 reviews54 followers
October 29, 2022
I really liked this serie and kind of binge read the first three books not long ago. Josie’s character has always been my favorite and i hated Lauren so much for what she did in book one. With her background story, and her determination to make amends, i forgave her pretty quickly.
Lauren and Mia met online through Piper Sheridan show’s fandom. I think a lot of people in LGBTQ community built friendships or found love that way, and you feel immediatly close to the characters, easily identify yourself in them (minus the thieving part maybe). The pattern of the storyline Rachel Lacey chose for this book is different from the other books of the serie, with a delicious slow burn and a really sweet ending.
We got to catch a glimpse of the HEA after the HEA for the characters from previous books and that what so comforting. Nevertheless, you can totally read this book without reading the others but the experience feels more complete when you do.
I am kind of sad this serie is ending but this book gave it the perfect conclusion.
293 reviews
November 2, 2022
I wanted to hate Lauren based on the 1st book in the series, but as you quickly find out why she stole the money, and that she had worked hard to earn the money to pay Josie back I suddenly loved her so much more for it. To add to it all you have Mia and this group of friends that found each other through the love of a TV show that they all come together to watch. I so loved how Lauren was more engrossed in the other stories than I realized as she wrote the fan fic for In Her Defense. I loved how Lauren and Mia started out as friends and how that relationship grew and changed into something so much more. I also enjoyed the mini updates you got about other characters from the first 3 books, with Sophie/Jules early on in the book and the rest all came together in the epilogue. I really liked this series and I have no doubt that I will read it again.
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
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528 reviews74 followers
April 23, 2023
What did I miss? I see my GR peeps raved about this final chapter in the Manhattan series and was so keen to dig in. But overall the pairing in this book did not work for me. The writing was strong, and there was enough of an interesting thread that helped me finish the book at least. But I found Lauren and Mia to be a very awkward pair, from how they met to the very end. I didn't feel their spark. The fanfic angle felt forced, and it was difficult to warm to Mia because she was so dissatisfied for much of the book. Her change of career was so opposite end of the spectrum, then we find out later in the book it was Lauren who suggested it through their online friendship. That was a head-scratcher, and I had a hard time suspending belief on this. Lauren as a character was fine, but forgettable. Not my favourite, I'm afraid. 2.75/5.
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