by Leslie Carroll

March 2002
ISBN: 0-80411-999-6
Reviewer Graphic Button Ivy Books
Mass Market Paperback

Leslie Carroll's debut book is a joy and will satisfy readers of romance and chick literature alike. Intelligent writing with a colorful cast will boost Miss Match right up on many a keeper shelf.

When 35-year-old drama teacher Kathryn Lamb decides to join her nosy neighbor's dating service, Six in the City, she hadn't counted on falling for her son Walker Hart. Ironically, as the son of the owner of a dating service, Walker doesn't believe in marriage. He's only running Six In The City as his mother was yet on another honeymoon. So it's too bad that he can't stay away from Kathryn, the latest hopeful - and what’s even worse is he has to set her up with five potential marriage candidates! It's no wonder then that those dates turn out to be less than perfect.

Miss Match paints an honest and very often hilarious picture of relationships. It's not sweet and mushy but real without losing the romance and the utterly charming desirable romantic moments. In this declaration of love to New York City, more than to its characters, it is easy and fun to follow around Kathryn on her many dates. But as a romance lover I would have wished for more interactions between the main characters. And even though Walker is a teddy bear, someone to lend a helping hand, to treat you to a midnight ice cream shopping and rides on carousels, I wouldn't have mind seeing their relationship steaming up a bit.

The thing that really appealed to me was Leslie Carroll's voice. It is raw and unpolished, not sweet but young, modern and direct. With a colourful imagination and an obvious knowledge of her subjects tackled in her book, no matter if it is on theater, music, books, the East Village or any of the other sights, she paints pictures so vivid and real that they made me laugh in sympathy and/or cry in mutual understanding. She's got the rhythm and the language just right for her colorful cast of characters, giving them all their own quirky and unique personality, proving her to be an author with a very good ear for snappy/witty dialogues. Might have something to do with her training and work as an actress. For myself, I am just glad to have discovered this new and entertaining voice and revel in introducing and recommending her to a wider and appreciative readership.

Miss Match might not be really a romance novel as such, the focus being definitely more on Kathryn and her dates than on her relationship with Walker, but if you don't mind the genre and do enjoy Sex And The City and Bridget Jones, it shouldn't be difficult to fall in love with this one.

Reviewed in March 2002 by Kris Alice.

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