Book Reviews

Enjoy Every Minute: Eight Perfect Hours by Lia Louis

Eight Perfect Hours by Lia Louis
Orion Books
August 2021
Romance

In this romantic and heartwarming novel, two strangers meet in chance circumstances during a blizzard and spend one perfect evening together, thinking they’ll never see each other again. But fate seems to have different plans.

From the acclaimed author of the “swoon-worthy…rom-com” (The Washington PostDear Emmie Blue.

On a snowy evening in March, 30-something Noelle Butterby is on her way back from an event at her old college when disaster strikes. With a blizzard closing off roads, she finds herself stranded, alone in her car, without food, drink, or a working charger for her phone. All seems lost until Sam Attwood, a handsome American stranger also trapped in a nearby car, knocks on her window and offers assistance. What follows is eight perfect hours together, until morning arrives and the roads finally clear.

The two strangers part, positive they’ll never see each other again, but fate, it seems, has a different plan. As the two keep serendipitously bumping into one another, they begin to realize that perhaps there truly is no such thing as coincidence. With plenty of charming twists and turns and Lia Louis’s “bold, standout voice” (Gillian McAllister, author of The Good Sister), Eight Perfect Hours is a gorgeously crafted novel that will make you believe in the power of fate.

This book is an emotional storm in the best possible way. The calm and quiet life of Noelle is disturbed by snow. I mean it. Real snow. A full blizzard! And all of a sudden she finds herself talking to a stranger. It never happens, right? Stuck among dozens of cars on the motorway, no battery on her phone, she could almost feel like an actress in one of THOSE movies. 

Did I roll my eyes? No. “What??” I can hear you scream. You know me, I’m on the less romantic side of readers. I’m the first to laugh at cheesy lines and perfect settings. So my reaction says a lot. Lia Louis has a way with words, a way with feelings. She sets them deep into every day lives, she distills love in little nuggets that feel right. Just enough so that my heart got warned by Noelle and Sam’s encounter without my reflux reflex going crazy with the sirupy talk. Eight hours in a bubble, getting to know each other, while the world stands still. I was right there in the car with them. I smiled at Noelle’s hesitation, I felt her unease melt like snow under the sun (see what I did there? :p ) and I witnessed something happen. Except I had no idea where it would lead us all! 

Lia Louis reminds me life offers us little windows of magic, impromptu moments we must enjoy before the stars slowly move again and things go back to normal. No more blizzard. No way of knowing if those eight hours spent in the company of a man she barely knew but made her feel all fuzzy inside. Reality struck and Noelle returned to her life with her mother needing help and quite useless brother! The strong cast of secondary characters gave the story an extra layer of normality and allowed me to better understand Noelle. 

Do Noelle and Sam’s paths cross again? In the weirdest way! But they bring along family, exes, and hearts that don’t quite know what to do with their feelings. Lia Louis didn’t grab a few tropes and regular so-called obstacles before letting her characters fall in each other’s arms. Noelle and Sam’s issues are real and relatable. Grief and mental health are covered, along with the insecurities we face when the unknown is right in front of us. Do we step back and remain in our safe zone, or do we dare take the jump? 

Eight Perfect Hours is not just about finding love, it is also about finding yourself, walking on your own path, and being a person before being someone’s person. I loved this part the most. 

Character growth? Check

Real life moments? Check

A real backbone to the story? Check

Eight Perfect Hours tastes like chocolate. It’s soothing, cute, real and delicious. Romantic love with a cherry on top

You can now grab your copy!

Amazon / Bookshop

I’d like to thank Alex at Orion for inviting me to be part of this tour and for providing me with a copy of Eight Perfect Hours.

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