Well, dear readers. It's finally here. The finale to contemporary romance star Ruthie Knox's serialization, Roman Holiday. We'll be honest, the three-month break between halves was tough. (We recapped the first half, starting here.) As romance fans, we want our HEA, and we want it now. Having to wait several months, while we read a bunch of other great books, made us forget why we loved Ashley, why we wanted Roman to come out of his shell. But we're happy to report that once the second half of Roman Holiday gets rolling (pun intended, and also, it's being released in one big chunk, so no more waiting, yay!), it's a really lovely, wonderful romance. How much did we like it? Let us count the ways!
1. Cameos! You know how, sometimes in a romance series, starring characters from previous books will stop by for a moment or two, so you can notice, 'Hey, she's pregnant now!' and then they leave again and you're all, 'Wait, where are you going?' None of that here. Several of Ruthie's Camelot characters come along for the ride, quite literally, as Roman and Ashley's road trip gets wackier and wackier. It's a lot of fun to spend some real quality time with these characters we'd missed.
2. The feels! Oh my, do emotions get bared in this second half. We're so, so glad we could binge read the whole finale in one sitting (though apologies to our families, for, you know, the ignoring). Once Roman becomes clear on his feelings for Ashley, there are a lot of lovely, heartwrenching declarations that will make you think, Yes! This is why I read romance. In case you had forgotten.
3. The realness. One of the best things about Ruthie's novels are her realisitic characters. They aren't cariachures, they're flawed and they're layered and that makes them understandable and relatable. It's like Cordelia says in Buffy (because, we mean, it all comes back to Buffy, right?): "What? I can't have layers?" Ashley's dad is a bad dad jerk, yes, but he's also more than that. In Ruthie's hands, he's a guy who wishes he could do better. Who's apologetic once he gets what he wants. That each and every supporting character gets such generous treatment makes Roman Holiday worthy of the read — and the wait.
Have you been anxiously waiting the end of Roman Holiday? It's available online now! And for more modern-day love stories, be sure to visit our Everything Romance page.