Release Blitz, Review & Excerpt: Booklover by J.E. Birk



Release Date: March 29, 2021
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Cover Design: Christine Coffey


Jamie Morin’s college GPA drops every time a cow breaks through a fence, but he’s determined to get his degree and keep his parents’ Vermont dairy farm afloat. He’d rather be reading than milking, but he can’t let his family down…not the way his brother did. So the last thing he needs is distraction in the form of an irresistible bookseller with a mysterious backstory.

Briar Nord has a lifetime of experience proving that happily-ever-afters only happen in his favorite books. But his luck might be changing. He’s got a great job at a bookstore, and he lives in a city that puts maple syrup on everything. But Briar knows not to trust anything--or anyone--too closely, and that includes a gorgeous farm boy with soulful eyes and too many obligations. 

When Jamie joins Briar’s romance novel book club, they both feel an instant connection and soon they’re turning pages long into the night. But Briar’s past was bound to catch up with him. Sometimes, though, it takes two heroes to write a new ending . . .


I start heading toward the circle of couches and chairs near the back where the inaugural meeting of The Booklover Club is supposed to take place. I make a quick stop at a shelf of new titles because the store’s got at least three that I’ve been meaning to read. I grab one of them, a nonfiction book about dairy farming, and I take a quick pause to wonder if my wallet can handle a bookstore binge. I’m still reading the inside of the jacket flap when I hear a voice behind me. 

“Can I help you?”

I turn around and try not to do that thing Jeremy says I sometimes do, where I just stand there staring at someone or something without speaking. In my defense, I think the problem comes from spending most of my childhood surrounded by cows. Sometimes I just forget how to people. 

         Especially when incredibly hot human beings are standing in front of me. Which is happening right now.  

This guy looks exactly like Porter, one of my other favorite book characters. He’s in Alyssa Samuel’s gay romance novel Lost Key, and right now I can’t help but wonder if he walked right off the pages of that book and into this store. The Porter look-alike in front of me has sharp, angular cheekbones sitting under hazel eyes and dirty blond hair and eyebrows. He’s got some scruffy I-wanna-be-a-beard-but-I’m-not-there-yet hair around his chin that’s straight out of the Vermont tourist brochures. His head is covered by a pilling green tuque, and his skin is this olive tone that should be next to impossible for any white guy to have in Vermont in March. He’s wearing a flannel shirt and jeans, which is pretty much the stereotypical Vermont uniform, but somehow on him it manages to look cool and unique.

         And as if all that weren’t enough? He’s carrying a stack of books.

         Some men dream of seeing their perfect lover strutting around in hot lingerie or tiny speedos. I dream of my perfect lover naked, with a stack of books strategically placed in front of them.


4 stars for Booklover!

I really loved the concept of this story, it is perfect for book lovers! 

Both the main characters, Briar and Jamie love romance books and share a passion for reading these books with happy endings. As a romance book lover myself, I loved reading about their passion for escaping into these stories and I felt like I could really relate to both of their characters. 

Briar is new in Burlington and came for a new start after some bad choices in his past put him in danger. Now he works at the bookstore side of Vino & Veritas and is starting a V & V Book Club that instantly attracts Jamie. 

Jamie is a part time librarian, student and dairy farmer whenever his family needs some help (which is more than he wishes they did). Jamie has loved romance novels since he was younger so when he sees the chance to talk about people who love the books like he does, he jumps on it even though he’s short of time… plus, how can he resist Briar, who he thinks looks like on of his favourite book characters?

Both Jamie and Briar are instantly attracted to each other but with complicated lives, they both are hesitant to start a new love relationship but they end up not able to resist each other. 

Jamie struggles with splitting his time between all his commitments and constant need to help out his family at their farm and is heading towards a burn out but he starts making time for fun with Briar and sees that he needs to take a step back and do what he enjoys instead of spreading himself thin. 

Briar is so hopefully with starting over in this new place and trying to do the right thing, however an old friend who is a bad influencer shows up at Burlington trying to drag him back to the dangerous games they played in the past. The tension between him and his friend is extreme and I was on the edge of my seat wondering what Briar would do and at the end of it all it was so nice seeing the V&V family give Briar the family he needed. 

I loved the chemistry between them both and I loved their little book club sessions when they Botha acted out or quoted their favourite scenes from their favourite romances, their love for one particular author tied them together so well. 

I really liked reading about their journey and how the author tied romance novels into their story, it was such a unique concept for me! This was such an enjoyable read! 

*ARC kindly provided in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own*

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