Title: Eight Perfect Hours
Author: Lia Louis
Publisher: Atria Books
Publication date: September 28th, 2021
In this romantic and heartwarming novel, two strangers meet in chance circumstances during a blizzard and spend one perfect evening together, thinking they’ll never see each other again. But fate seems to have different plans.
On a snowy evening in March, 30-something Noelle Butterby is on her way back from an event at her old college when disaster strikes. With a blizzard closing off roads, she finds herself stranded, alone in her car, without food, drink, or a working charger for her phone. All seems lost until Sam Attwood, a handsome American stranger also trapped in a nearby car, knocks on her window and offers assistance. What follows is eight perfect hours together, until morning arrives and the roads finally clear.
The two strangers part, positive they’ll never see each other again, but fate, it seems, has a different plan. As the two keep serendipitously bumping into one another, they begin to realize that perhaps there truly is no such thing as coincidence. With plenty of charming twists and turns and Lia Louis’s “bold, standout voice” (Gillian McAllister, author of The Good Sister), Eight Perfect Hours is a gorgeously crafted novel that will make you believe in the power of fate.
Lia Louis returns with an enchanting and whimsical romance that questions the role of fate and how small the world can really be, when two people who meet while stuck in traffic continue to run into each other. After 8 hours spent on the highway together, Sam and Noel have run into each other multiple times, inexplicably as one is from America and the other from England. But, they are both trying to make relationships with with long term partners and don’t feel they can take the meetings as anything other than coincidence.
I was immediately hooked by this book and I loved the premise of fate and whether people are meant to meet. At it’s heart it’s a conversation on determinism as applied to soul mates and it was a beautiful story.
I truly loved watching Sam and Noel try to justify not being together. There are also side plots around mental health, grief, and difficult family relationships. Anxiety is depicted so well, along with postpartum depression and the grief you feel after losing a family member or a friend.
I read Eight Perfect Hours in one sitting and highly encourage romance fans to pick it up. This is a completely closed door book, the story is really about the lead up to the romance, which isn’t what some people look for in a romance (myself included if I’m being honest) but I think it is worth a read even without it.
Thank you to Edelweiss and Atria Books for an early copy in exchange for an honest review.
Happy reading, folks!