Love Walked In by Marissa de los Santos

Summary from Goodreads: "When Martin Grace enters the hip Philadelphia coffee shop Cornelia Brown manages, her life changes forever. But little does she know that her newfound love is only the harbinger of greater changes to come. Meanwhile, across town, Clare Hobbs--eleven years old and abandoned by her erratic mother--goes looking for her lost father. She crosses paths with Cornelia while meeting with him at the café, and the two women form an improbable friendship that carries them through the unpredictable currents of love and life."

What I found enjoyable about Love Walked In is the crispness and clarity of the voices employed in storytelling (although the initial Cornelia chapters felt too long winded). And the alternating narratives of Claire and Cornelia indicated that this isn't your usual romance novel, you know, the one where they trace the path from meet cute to falling in love to happily ever after. The focal point isn't even romantic love, not entirely, no. But the love you get from friendship and family. And I thought, that was a pretty nice deviation. 

The book is not without tropes though.

  • Adorkable Trope - Cornelia (She has been described as piquant, pixie-ish, a face girl, and she's PETITE.)
  • Every Girl Wants Him / Most Beautiful Man in the World Trope - Teo Sandoval (He glows they say. Like Edward Cullen! He might be a vampyr!)
  • Quirky Best Friend Trope - Linny (On one occasion wears a scarf, striped engineer's overalls and embroidered Chinese slippers, all at the same time. BFFs are are either quirky or gay. Or both.) 
  • Love Epiphany Trope - Transubstansmahshamalalalan

Okay I am nitpicking because there will always be tropes, but it does get a little wearisome if you've had them over and over. And I am usually okay with most of them if done to my liking, or obscured by other things like engaging writing, which was actually the case for Love Walked In.

But I was a little less amenable about these things which felt like contrivances, or what I ended up calling as KABLAM-Y Moments.

  • KABLAM! Dead!
  • KABLAM! Transubstansmahshamalalalan!
  • KABLAM! Turns out I am having marriage issues and I have feelings for you too! 
  • KABLAM! Divorce papyrs on the way! We can be together! Happily Ever After!

Overall though, the writing makes it stand out. Great prose. It's the plot and the characterization that I am not completely into. That and I probably am just a Romance Grinch. Or as one of the oldest and most standard tropes go: It's not you, (Love Walked In,) it's me.


  1. LOL LOL LOL hahahahahaha! I was LOLing at "vampyr" and then I read this:


    I die. Terribly.

    1. Hahahaha! I couldn't help myself! Cornelia says we can call it denial, but she calls it grace. Ayown! :)

  2. LOL! Crossing this out from my "to do list". I don't think I need to write a review of my own.
    I'll just post a URL directing people to this. hahahaha

    1. LOL! Naw. You totally still can make one! Also, this quote from The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry comes to mind: "the things we respond to at twenty are not necessarily the same things we will respond to at forty and vice versa. This is true in books and also in life.” I think I may already have had my fair share of romance tropes when I was but an impressionable youth. :)

    2. Ahahahaha. I really doubt that I'd be tempted to read this in my twenties. I am more forgiving now, since TFG. :)

  3. Hahaha! "Transubstansmahshamalalalan!" Why didn't I just type something like this when we talked about this book? It's really difficult to spell. And I agree with you, Romance Grinch, liking it too because the focal point isn't romantic love.

    1. Hahaha! As I was typing that darned word, I got confused kung anong spelling kaya binilisan ko nalang yung pagpindot ng kung ano anong keys. And also to express my frustration about the whole concept. Hahaha! :)


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