Kate Clayborn’s Love at First is one of those books that you immediately feel has wrapped you up in a warm hug, and in which the characters and their story creep gradually and unobtrusively under your skin and wind around your heartstrings ... this is a beautifully understated but gloriously romantic love story full of poignancy and tenderness featuring fully-rounded, supremely relatable characters with ordinary, everyday lives and ordinary, everyday problems ... Love at First is, quite simply, a delightful love story. It’s not flashy or drama-filled; it’s a quiet, heartfelt and deeply emotional tale in which the romance builds slowly and organically, the character development is incredible yet subtle, and the regard and respect the two leads have for one another – even when they’re on opposite sides – infuse every page.
The conflict is immediate, but if you’re expecting typical rom-com over-the-top exploits, then you’d be wrong. Sure, Nora pulls a couple of fast ones to try to get around Will, but then something far sweeter than hijinks ensues ... There’s a lovely, expansive hopefulness to Clayborn’s romance. Pretty much none of its characters have the life they’d imagined for themselves or the one they would have chosen. Everyone, not just the main couple, has experienced their share of grief ... But as all of them come together in a variety of ways—involving poetry, lost kittens, towel rods and really good marinara sauce—a sense of beautiful optimism shines through Clayborn’s prose. Love at First will not only make you believe that you can recover from the pain in your past but that you can, if and when you choose, break away from your past entirely and build a new future, surrounded by love and support. Rather than narrowly focus on its main couple, Love at First overflows with a sense of connection and community. While watching Will and Nora fall deeply, endearingly in love, you’ll also fall in love with the world they live in, the community they build and the future they have to look forward to together.
Clayborn explores the experience of falling in love in a Chicago apartment building in a contemporary romance that will resonate with city dwellers and rural readers alike ... Instead, all of these shenanigans endear Will to Nora, and the two slowly begin to fall for one another in spite of Nora’s fears of being disloyal to her neighbors. A superb cast of characters rounds out this sweet, slow-burn romance.