Words Worth Noting

Favorite Quotes

"Le coeur a ses raisons que la raison ne connait point. French. Pascal. The heart has its reasons, whereof reason knows nothing."— Madeleine L'Engle

Sunday, November 24, 2019

Review: Open House

Open House Open House by Ruby Lang
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I wouldn’t have expected a love story that's set in New York and revolves around gentrification to be this sweet and realistic at the same time, but this one was and it works. I love the messy, challenging, multicultural, multiracial world Ruby Lang has created here. I like it because I recognize it.

As a struggling real estate agent trying to sell one of few open lots in a historic but still gentrifying and highly coveted section of Harlem, and a community activist trying to protect the garden currently occupying it, Magda Ferrer and Tyson Yang are natural rivals if not out right enemies. This being a romance, though, of course they eventually find common ground in addition to passion. And it all unfolds in a way that is convincing and affirming. That’s in no small part due to Ty’s boundlessly thoughtful, nurturing and generous nature.

He says something to Magda towards the end that I think is meaningful, because it represents a modern ideal of loving support for a working woman: “You may not always have time, but I have patience.”

Ty may not be the absolutely sweetest and gooey new man of every ones dreams, but he’s pretty close. It’s not as flashy as the stereotypical alpha brought to heel and grovel before the heroine, but In our current context, and given the way Ruby Lang tells the story, that’s pretty darn sexy.

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