I would simply communicate with my partner what my desires and feelings were and not assume that they didn’t like me as much as I liked them, leading to us both feeling awful and hoping that the casual status quo is better than ruining things by telling her how I felt.
– Me, reading this book, lying to myself probably
You know the stereotype about queer women that we are incapable of telling if a girl is into us, even to ridiculous levels? Count Your Lucky Stars by Alexandria Bellefleur takes that failure of communication to extremes, to a place that we all would hope we are better than, regardless of our levels of gay dumbassery. We hope we are better than Margot and Olivia, but honestly, this book would not be as fun as it is if I didn’t worry that I wasn’t.
Olivia and Margot were teenage best friends who had a summer fling after they left high school. Then Olivia’s ex asked to get back together and following a spectacular miscommunication of admittedly teen feelings the girls parted ways, never to be close again. Now they are 30 and Olivia just got divorced, they haven’t seen each other in years. Everything changes when Olivia’s important new client at her wedding planning business is none other than Margot’s best friend. One home boiler malfuction and an overzealous mutual friend later and the two girls find themselves living together, their unresolved teenage feelings re-emerging once more.
At this point, we’re off to the races. They can’t stop themselves falling back into bed, they both assume that the other can’t do serious, they both see things from when they were 18 as the other’s fault but don’t talk about it for too long. You know the drill, you’ve probably read the fics.
I was all set to say that it was a middle of the road romance and that everything around the edge felt pretty underdrawn compared with some of it’s contemporaries, but if I’m being honest I did read this book twice inside a week and happily went and sought out other books by the author. It’s still not the best book of the genre, and the side characters were indeed pretty underutilised, relying on knowledge of their own books (Written in the Stars and Hang the Moon of which I have now read the former, but not the latter). But to be honest, when it comes to lighter, softer romances “I liked this enough to read it twice” is about as much of a recommendation as I can give, regardless of what number of stars are below this review. Some books don’t need to make me feel more complicated things than silently yelling “Just tell her already you fool” at the protagonists, knowing that at some point the dam will burst and everything will work out.