From a fresh new voice in women’s fiction comes a page-turning, relatable love story about the complicated nature of timing in modern-day relationships.
Childhood best friends Charli Anderson and Jack Logan fall madly in love during college and can’t imagine a life apart. But when they land dream opportunities on opposite ends of the country following graduation, they are forced to make a heart-wrenching pact. In the hope of one day restarting their love story, they set a date to reunite in five years at their favorite restaurant.
Restaurant owner Gianna Hayden is thirty-seven, single, and one bad date away from giving up on finding the right guy when she meets Peter Clark on a dating website. Attractive, kind, and driven, he is exactly what she thought she was looking for. But as the day of Charli and Jack’s reservation approaches, Gianna finds herself reflecting on the kind of passionate love her former customers once had and begins to question her bond with Peter.
These two riveting stories converge on the night of the fateful reunion. Gianna, Charli, and Jack are all forced to make difficult choices as they struggle to follow their hearts, and ultimately each must decide where their true feelings lie before time runs out.
Waiting at Hayden’s is the first book to be published in the new reading experience format shopfiction™, which Costello coined and branded. The digital version of this book contains links to watch key scenes unfold and to shop the characters’ clothes. The print versions contain web addresses to do the same.
3.5 – 4 Stars
So sweet! Perfect if you’re in the mood for something light and upbeat.
This debut novel alternates between past and present, all building toward one night at Hayden’s, a restaurant that is central to the story. Charli and Jack fall in love in high school but make a pact: they will both pursue their dreams but meet back at Hayden’s in five years if they still truly love each other. Neither one is ready to give up their passions and both move to opposite parts of the country.
This sweet romantic comedy has an added bonus of containing links to the outfits worn by the main characters in certain key scenes. Called shopfiction™, this experience allows the reader to see the clothes as described by the author. This clever creation by Riley Costello, who has a fantastic fashion and lifestyle blog, is meant to be experienced with the ebook version of this story. The ebook also contains trailers with music to depict certain scenes.
The owner of Hayden’s waits impatiently for the night of the reservation made so many years before. Gianna’s romance might be ending in a proposal on this night so she, too, has a lot happening in both her personal and professional life. What will happen with Charli and Jack? She hasn’t heard from them since the night they made the reservation.
“She thought of Charli and Jack and wondered if the opposite was true for them. Had too much time passed? They’d each been so sure of their feelings for one another back when they were together, but now, after five years apart, was each questioning the bond they’d once had? Were they both in a panic this very minute too?”
Although it might seem far-fetched to stay out of touch with someone in this age of social media, Charli and Jack agree to go cold turkey and not contact each other during the next few years. They both love each other deeply but want the other to flourish and grow.
“I know this will change things between us,” he said. “But I want things to change. You’re not like any girl I’ve ever met, Charli. You’re smart, you challenge me, you’re pretty, without even really trying to be and . . . I don’t know . . . you’re the one person I can be myself around.”
What will happen on the night of the appointed reservation? And what will happen with Gianna and her longtime boyfriend Peter? This breezy romantic comedy ends on a refreshing, upbeat note and will please all lovers of true romance. Riley Costello is a talented writer and I look forward to reading more from her in the future.