Serena McAllister is devastated to find her fiancé has cheated on her—again. When she learns her newspaper is outsourcing jobs to freelance writers, she’s desperate to land the last remaining staff position. Unfortunately, her rival Jane Childers wants the coveted spot as well, and she’s just as determined.
Vowing to do whatever it takes to get her life in order, Serena decides to join a modern-day harem and write a provocative article about the objectification of women across the world to land her dream job at the newspaper.
When Serena arrives at the tiny tropical paradise known as Birin Island, she meets Prince Shailemon Sharma, who is dealing with his own issues of archaic customs in his homeland.
As sparks begin to fly, they discover that attraction can lead to so much more—and that there are no barriers of culture or country when love is on the line.
“This book has it all, love heartbreak, drama, and rivalry. It’s a fast paced read that you won’t want to put down. LOVE MATCH is one of my favorite books of 2021!”— Tammy Feeney, No Shelf Control
Interview with Laire McKinney
Let’s start with some questions about you. What are three fun facts about yourself?
- I recently ordered a book I read so much as a child, I had to have a new copy as an adult. What book? The Story About Ping by Marjorie Flack and Kurt Wiese.
- I have a terrible memory of facts, and only remember how things made/make me feel.
- I have a French bulldog named Edward Cullen, or Eddie-boo for short.
Are you a morning person or a night owl?
Morning person all the way… as long as there’s coffee, and an abundance of it.
Favorite place to read a book?
Beach-paperback, or bed-Kindle, often in the middle of the night when I can’t sleep.
Music on or off when writing?
On. I particularly like Hayley Westenra, Celtic Woman, Sarah Brightman, Sarah McLachlan, Josh Groban, to name the artists that come to mind.
What character would you like to have dinner with?
Morgan le Fey from The Mists of Avalon by Marion Zimmer Bradley.
Coffee or tea?
Hot coffee in the morning. No cream. No sugar. Iced coffee in the afternoon. Cream only. Delish.
Now let’s dive in to questions about Love Match!
The fictional setting of Birin Island is described so beautiful you can almost hear and see this gorgeously scenic island. What was your inspiration to set most of the novel there?
The original Coming to America was the inspiration for the island. I grew up loving the movie, and watched it several times over the years. The setting is magical, and has always remained memorable.
Serena McAllister is such a likable and relatable character. Is she modeled after someone in your life—or even yourself?
Is it too revealing to say myself? Her humor, clumsiness, and sass are attributes I can relate to, and the preference for comfortable shoes!
Coteries aren’t heard of often these days. What led you to including them as a major plot point in the novel?
That’s a good question. Sometimes ideas evolve and it’s difficult to pinpoint their exact origin. But I read an article years ago about a western woman joining a harem and the idea has always stuck with me. It’s safe to say Love Match evolved, twenty years later, from that article.
Monarchies play a huge role in Love Match. Are the politics influenced by any famous monarchies?
None. Or, rather, if any, then King Jaffe Joffer from Coming to America. It’s pure fiction, though I do follow the lives of the British Royal family. I used to have a book filled with pictures of Princess Diana, and wore the pages out flipping through it so often.
What inspired you to write the novel? I was craving something light and sexy with a fairy tale flair. There’s enough darkness in the world. I wanted to create a novel of pure escape—for not only readers, but also for myself.
It’s a secret…so guarded and hidden that no one will ever discover it—mostly because I don’t know myself, so it’s also hidden from me.
“McKinney crafts words so well-written I almost packed a bag. Instead I’ll suggest this one to friends but warn them they might stay up all night.”— Heather Douglass, NetGalley Reviewer
Curious to see how this modern day fairy tale begins? Check out a preview of Love Match here.