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We Could Be So Good: A Novel (Paperback)
Apple Books’ Best Books of the Month • Amazon Best Books of the Month Editor’s Pick, Romance • Library Journal Romance Pick of the Month • LibraryReads Hall of Fame: June 2023
Casey McQuiston meets The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo in this mid-century grumpy/sunshine rom-dram about a scrappy reporter and a newspaper mogul’s son "‘for Newsies shippers,’ [that] absolutely delivers” (Dahlia Adler, Buzzfeed Books).
“A spectacularly talented writer!” —Julia Quinn
Nick Russo has worked his way from a rough Brooklyn neighborhood to a reporting job at one of the city’s biggest newspapers. But the late 1950s are a hostile time for gay men, and Nick knows that he can’t let anyone into his life. He just never counted on meeting someone as impossible to say no to as Andy.
Andy Fleming’s newspaper-tycoon father wants him to take over the family business. Andy, though, has no intention of running the paper. He’s barely able to run his life—he’s never paid a bill on time, routinely gets lost on the way to work, and would rather gouge out his own eyes than deal with office politics. Andy agrees to work for a year in the newsroom, knowing he’ll make an ass of himself and hate every second of it.
Except, Nick Russo keeps rescuing Andy: showing him the ropes, tracking down his keys, freeing his tie when it gets stuck in the ancient filing cabinets. Their unlikely friendship soon sharpens into feelings they can’t deny. But what feels possible in secret—this fragile, tender thing between them—seems doomed in the light of day. Now Nick and Andy have to decide if, for the first time, they’re willing to fight.
Cat Sebastian has written sixteen queer historical romances. Cat’s books have received starred reviews from Kirkus, Publishers Weekly, Library Journal, and Booklist. Before writing, Cat was a lawyer and a teacher and did a variety of other jobs she liked much less than she enjoys writing happy endings for queer people. She was born in New Jersey and lived in New York and Arizona before settling down in a swampy part of south. When she isn’t writing, she’s probably reading, having one-sided conversations with her dog, or doing the crossword puzzle.
“It’s not about the events [of the plot], it’s about the going through [them]. And the going through is wonderful: At one point a character makes some soup, and then later a different character makes more soup, and here I am weeping and prostrate because the reader knows what that soup means. … Queer oppression, the civil rights movement, white supremacy—these are tangible contexts in this novel, but they are not the subject. The subject: joy as praxis, love as liberation. You can’t do the big rebellions if you can’t start with the small ones.” — New York Times Book Review
“A spectacularly talented writer!” — Julie Quinn, New York Times bestselling author of the Bridgerton series
“This historical romance is billed as being ‘for Newsies shippers,’ and it absolutely delivers.” — Dahlia Adler, Buzzfeed Books
“Cat Sebastian is my desert island author—I would follow her through any era, any trope, any time. There is a lightness to Sebastian’s work that makes every page sing; every beat of repartee is bright with wit, every quiet moment impossibly, ardently romantic. It’s the kind of book that ends all too soon, because what could ever be better than life on Cat Sebastian’s page?” — Olivie Blake, author of the New York Times bestselling Atlas series
“Cat Sebastian is a queen of queer historical romance…. [She] never disappoints.” — Entertainment Weekly
“[A] tender love story.” — Popsugar
“Irresistible…. There’s plenty of conflict to keep the pages flying, but it’s the scenes of Nick and Andy’s cozy domesticity that truly shine. This wonderful period romance will leave readers just as giddy as its leads.” — Publishers Weekly (starred review)
“Well, this is just great. … Few authors have Sebastian’s flair for deftly exploring the intricate, often messy nature of human relationships, from moments of heartbreak to happiness, with such insight and compassion. While the vividly evoked 1950s setting is new for this author, everything else about this sublimely romantic love story, including the dryly witty writing and graceful characterization, is signature Sebastian.” — Booklist (starred review)
“Fans of the author’s books will absolutely not want to miss this one. This sweetly angsty novel about two people finding themselves and figuring out a way forward together will appeal to anyone who enjoys reading opposites-attract romances with found family subplots.” — Library Journal (starred review)
“[We Could Be So Good] reads like a love letter to the queer pulp novels of the era, but with an infusion of hope not often seen in literature about the time period. … With We Could Be So Good, Sebastian adds a tender, heartening stunner of a love story to her already-impressive body of work.” — BookPage
“[T]he focus remains on the revolutionary act of queer joy…. A found family element contributes to the hopefulness and heart that are the cores of this story. A vividly portrayed midcentury romance filled with queer contentment.” — Kirkus Reviews
"Cat Sebastian has a place on my keeper shelf!” — Tessa Dare, New York Times bestselling author