Review of Passion on Park Avenue

Hey, y’all! I’m still on vacation so I’m only semi-sorry that I must seem like a disembodied writer out in the ether who doesn’t respond to your comments. I will be back next week. Vacation has been great with pretty perfect weather, which doesn’t happen often in May. May at mid-Atlantic beaches can be extremely variable but evidently not this year.

If you’re looking for some of your own beach reads or vacation reads, you’ve got to consider the next one if you like smartly written romances!


Passion on Park Avenue

The Central Park Pact series

Lauren Layne

May 28, 2019

Gallery Books

Blurb: From the author of the New York Times bestselling Stiletto and Oxford series, the first in a sizzling new series following the unlikely friendship of three Upper East Side women as they struggle to achieve their dreams and find true love and happiness in the city that never sleeps. 

For as long as she can remember, Bronx-born Naomi Powell has had one goal: to prove her worth among the Upper East Side elite—the same people for which her mom worked as a housekeeper. Now, as the strongminded, sassy CEO of one of the biggest jewelry empires in the country, Naomi finally has exactly what she wants—but it’s going to take more than just the right address to make Manhattan’s upper class stop treating her like an outsider.

The worst offender is her new neighbor, Oliver Cunningham—the grown son of the very family Naomi’s mother used to work for. Oliver used to torment Naomi when they were children, and as a ridiculously attractive adult, he’s tormenting her in entirely different ways. Now they find themselves engaged in a battle-of-wills that will either consume or destroy them…

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Lauren Layne is such a reliable writer that I know when I pick up one of her novels that I am going to be immediately involved and happily flipping pages until I come to the end. Passion on Park Avenue is no different.

While Passion on Park Avenue starts with an interesting meet-cute, one that involves two mistresses and the wife of a philanderer who, avoiding the funeral, walk a short distance to Central Park, recognize that they all wear the same shoes…and evidently shared the same man. On the outside, the women may vaguely resemble each other in that they dress similarly and all wear the same watch, a gift from the heartless philanderer, but inside they are so very different.

The first story involves Bronx-born Naomi, who is prickly but strong, compassionate and sometimes speaks without a filter. Naomi learns that her application is in the running for a select Manhattan apartment, which is interesting because she never put in the application. She realizes that it’s the work of her mother who died just months earlier and who wanted the people in that select building to see what Naomi had become: the CEO of an accessory empire. The interviewer is Naomi’s childhood nemesis, Oliver, the son of a philanderer who had an affair with her mother.

Layne never writes a one-dimensional story and Passion on Park Avenue is no different. Naomi doesn’t have it in her to enact any kind of revenge against the people who made her mother so bitter. The circumstances have changed and the people have changed and likewise, Naomi changes. The story is multi-layered and lays the groundwork for the upcoming stories. I only hope that the upcoming heroines, Audrey and Claire, are as spunky and interesting as Naomi.

Passion on Park Avenue is an excellent vacation read that I devoured in a day. If you’re a Lauren Layne fan, you will love this book! Add this to your summer TBR list!

I received an ARC in exchange for an honest review.



4 butterflies and a ladybug out of 5 butterflies


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