The Color of Love by RadclyffeThe Color of Love by Radclyffe sounds like a marriage of convenience book when you read the blurb, and yet it’s so much more than that.

Emily May loves her life in New York City and her job as a literary agent that allows her to keep her sister in around-the-clock care back home. But when immigration regulations change and leave her without a green card, her whole life becomes a big question mark. She doesn’t want to move back to Singapore, and things look even more dire when her friend, boss, mentor and best advocate, Henrietta Winfield, has a heart attack and is hospitalized.

Playgirl and racing enthusiast Derian Winfield is called back to New York when the only family member who truly cares about her ends up in the hospital. Despite her tendency to keep people at arm’s length, she finds herself drawn to the beautiful and warm Emily, finding solace in her company and thinking about her when she’s not around. Derian has no idea how to run a literary agency, but steps in anyway when it becomes clear that her father and his “fixer” have plans that would undo Henrietta’s legacy and send Emily out of the country, even though she’s Henrietta’s second-in-command and should be running the place in her absence. Their attraction for each other grows every day, and if Derian can just convince Emily to marry her, it could solve all of their problems.

The Characters

Emily is sweet, brilliant, thoughtful, and kind and it’s no wonder Derian is drawn to her. I want to be friends with Emily. Like, going for coffee and talking books all afternoon friends. She’s so good at her job, an incredible sister, and just an all-around wonderful person. I just loved her all the way through the book, especially when she showed the strength that lies under all of the sweetness.

Derian has a huge arc, starting out as a standoffish womanizer and gambler, and changing to become a partner worthy of Emily (can you tell I like Emily? I know, I’ve been subtle). As isolated and selfish as her lifestyle might seem, she has deep feelings for a handful of people like her best friend, Audrey, and Henrietta that are a solid foundation for the growth she experiences throughout the book. I can’t say for sure whether she changes because of Emily or because of the circumstances keeping Henrietta out of the office, and I’m not sure it matters. Either way, she’s a different woman by the end of the book, and I’d be pretty okay with her tagging along with Emily for our coffee chats.

The Writing Style

You know all that stuff you’ve long loved about your favourite Radclyffe book? The perfectly paced and plotted romance between two women you fully invest in that leaves you with a happy sigh at the end? It’s all there. Oh yeah, and it’s sexy as hell. I love how their attraction and chemistry builds alongside the mutual respect and friendship so that it all blends together into a perfectly hot, perfectly beautiful relationship that I believed in.

The Narration

Abby Craden is one of my favourite current lesfic narrators and she does a fabulous job with The Color of Love. I was especially with how distinct she made Emily and Derian.

The Pros

Just about everything. The characters are great, the romance is delicious, the writing superb, and even the side characters (including the super hateable ones) are well done. I loved this book

The Cons

I don’t know if this is actually a con, but it feels incidental that Emily was raised in Singapore and it’s not clear at all where her family is originally from (her dad worked at an unnamed embassy). There’s a little mention of her accent, and other than that she could have just as easily been from Canada or the UK and it wouldn’t have made any difference to the story.

taras favourite lesbian booksThe Conclusion

The Color of Love is fantastic and I highly recommend it, especially in audio. It’s my favourite Radclyffe book since Crossroads and it makes my heart happy.

Excerpt from The Color of Love by Radclyffe

“You’re very stubborn, aren’t you?” The words were out before she could pull them back. She was usually so much more cautious when she first met someone, and here she was saying everything that came into her head. “I didn’t mean—”

Derian laughed. “That’s a mild way of putting it. Most people might phrase it differently. But yes, once I set my mind on something, I’m kind of hard to dissuade. What’s your favorite food?”

“Cookies,” Emily said instantly.

Derian laughed again, a deep sound that rumbled in her chest and seemed to enclose Emily like a warm cloak wrapped around her shoulders. The image struck her as belonging to someone else. When had she ever been so frivolous? All the same, she couldn’t help but smile.

Besides dessert,” Derian said.

“Who said it was dessert?” Emily said.

“All right, I’ll admit to an occasional meal of ice cream myself, but not tonight. What would you like?”

“Almost anything—you choose.”

Derian looked down at herself. “I could use a shower and a change of clothes. Would it be asking too much for you to stop by my apartment with me for a quick pit stop? I promise, it won’t be more than fifteen minutes, and that will give me a chance to call and get reservations. I’ll have you seated at a table in less than forty-five minutes.”

“You can do that in New York City?”

“Trust me.”Derian grinned and Emily suspected that grin took her a long way in the world—part charm, part devil, part sex.

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Bits and Bobs

  • ISBN number: 9781626397163
  • Publisher: Bold Strokes Books
  • Audiobook Publisher: Audible Studios
  • Narrator: Abby Craden

Radclyffe Online 

About the author

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Tara Scott lives in Calgary, Canada with her family. If you don't find her with her Kindle in her hand, she's probably busy talking about what she's currently reading.