Review: To Sir, with Love (Lauren Layne)

To Sir, with Love
Author: Lauren Layne
Publication Date: July 29, 2021
Publisher: Gallery Books
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Note: This review is for an ARC and is my unbiased review.

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ 


Love Is Blind meets You’ve Got Mail in this laugh-out-loud romantic comedy following two thirty-somethings who meet on a blind dating app—only to realize that their online chemistry is nothing compared to their offline rivalry.

Perpetually cheerful and eager to please, Gracie Cooper strives to make the best out of every situation. So when her father dies just months after a lung cancer diagnosis, she sets aside her dreams of pursuing her passion for art to take over his Midtown Manhattan champagne shop. She soon finds out that the store’s profit margins are being squeezed perilously tight, and complicating matters further, a giant corporation headed by the impossibly handsome, but irritatingly arrogant Sebastian Andrews is proposing a buyout. But Gracie can’t bear the thought of throwing away her father’s dream like she did her own.

Overwhelmed and not wanting to admit to her friends or family that she’s having second thoughts about the shop, Gracie seeks advice and solace from someone she’s never met—the faceless “Sir”, with whom she connected on a blind dating app where matches get to know each other through messages and common interests before exchanging real names or photos.

But although Gracie finds herself slowly falling for Sir online, she has no idea she’s already met him in real life…and they can’t stand each other. 

I’m always excited to find out Lauren Layne is releasing another book. She’s a go-to author for me. I adore her writing style and the contemporary romances she creates. To Sir, With Love was a great addition to her catalog of books. It was another book set in what seems to be Layne’s favorite city of New York, but it was different than many of her other books. It came across warmer and almost had a small town feel despite the big city setting.

So…What did I love about this book? Bubbly & More, Gracie’s family champagne store, was a unique venue. I loved how it fit in with Gracie’s family and her possibly suiter dynamic. The characters were all so fun. I adored Gracie from the minute she came to life on the page. She made me laugh plenty of times. I liked her communications with Sir. Those were fun. Any time emails, letters, texts, etc are in a book it adds to the fun. Gracie’s “enemy” Sebastian was a pleasant suit-type surprise as well. Add in Gracie’s family and co-workers and there were so many great characters to add to the story. It was just a cute story that made me smile the entire time I read it — which was basically in one setting.

There was one weird thing about this book. I don’t know exactly how to classify it. It was probably more women’s fiction than romance, but it still felt like reading a romance. Or I guess it could be considered an incredibly slow, slow burn romance. It doesn’t really matter when it comes down to it because however you want to classify it, it was a great read. I do have to admit I would have liked more time with the couple in this story. There was so much build up and so little time with them. That being said, I still loved every minute reading this book. 

25 thoughts on “Review: To Sir, with Love (Lauren Layne)”

  1. I feel like Layne’s books can lean a bit more women’s fiction, though they always have a strong romance in there. I kind of like that she spends so much time on developing her heroines, and she never fails to assemble fantastic casts. The store sounds fun too. Layne’s books always hit the spot for me.

    1. They used to be romance, but they have moved towards women’s fiction in her latest releases. I still enjoy them, too.

  2. Yay! I definitely agree that I love when e-mails/texts/letters/etc. are included in books. And you’re right that this had a small town feel, despite the city setting. That’s probably another reason why I liked this one so much. Great review!

  3. ooh I love this cover, and it almost sounds like a Julia Quinn book – lol.

    1. It does. I don’t like the title because of that. It’s either that or a BDSM title and this book was neither.

  4. I figured this book was more women’s fiction than romance. This publisher seems to converting all their romance authors into women’s fiction authors lol.
    Anyways, I’m glad it was still a good read. I’m a little hesitant to download an arc just yet, so I think I’ll put in a hold at the library instead when it released!

    1. That’s so sad. At least she still releases romances on her own. I think library hold would be a good idea.

  5. Great review! I know what you meant about time with the couple. I often get bummed in slow burn romances when the book ends right after the couple finally get together. I want to see them as a couple and enjoy it for a while at least! LOL!

    1. Thanks!
      I can’t remember — have you read LL before? I think you would like it. It’s more on the line of women’s fiction than romance because the slow burn is so slow.

          1. You could start with your library. I just wouldn’t start with the first Man of the Year (the second is fine) or the first Park Avenue book.

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