Review: Once Ghosted, Twice Shy
ONCE GHOSTED, TWICE SHY - Alyssa Cole
Harper Collins/Avon Impulse
BUY

January 2019
Contemporary Romance
REVIEWER:  Cheryl McNeil | RATING:  B+
REVIEW: ONCE GHOSTED, TWICE SHY is book 2.5 in The Reluctant Royals series.  The book’s title actually reminds me of the lyrics to the song, Once Bitten Twice Shy, by the late Vesta Williams. The theme of the story is along these same lines. Disclaimer: The cover, which is nicely done, should make it clear that the main characters are members of the LGBTQ community.

We meet Likotsi in the first book of The Reluctant Royals series, A PRINCESS IN THEORY. While Prince Thabiso is busy convincing Naledi she is his Princess, Likotsi, assistant to his Royal Highness, is off enjoying a fling. We find out in A PRINCESS IN THEORY that Likotsi and her mysterious woman didn’t live happily ever after. That’s the tone at the beginning of ONCE GHOSTED, TWICE SHY. Likotsi is back in New York months later with Prince Thabiso and Princess Naledi and has some time to explore the city. While Likotsi is on the train, she sees her mystery fling Fabiola (or Fab). Fab invites her for tea and the story takes off from there.

The book is set in winter when Likotsi is back in New York and the previous spring when Likotsi and Fab first meet. The theme is second chance, but also includes a suspenseful element. Ms. Cole goes back and forth between the spring and winter timeframes. The reader is eager to find out what happened and what causes Likotsi’s heartbreak. This was supposed to be a brief fling, but apparently Likotsi changes her mind along the way. It’s also clear that Fab wants something more.

The book explores the deeper connection that can be made over a short period of time between two people, and what happens when the pair has a second chance to either gain closure, or confirm if this is the right situation for them.

Ms. Cole definitely has a gift for writing analogies and as noted in previous books, has an expansive vocabulary. This causes the reader to pause after certain passages which slows you down.  On the plus side, the story touches on the very serious issue of deportation, which is a hot topic in current events. Ms. Cole always pays great attention to details. One example is Ms. Cole weaving in descriptive information about the sites throughout the book. Members of the LGBTQ community will really enjoy this book because it depicts a lesbian relationship just like any other relationship
22nd February 2019 | romcol@caribsurf.com
(B+)