Love hits the road in ‘The Playlist’

BookTok and Instagram indie romance writer Morgan Elizabeth released the fifth installment of her “Springbrook Hills” series. Elizabeth is a somewhat new indie author, but her name is already well-known in the world of spicy romance due to her endearing love interests and kindhearted protagonists. From small towns to colleges, she can idealize any location as the setting of a story that will have you falling in love with love.

Following her success on TikTok and gaining a following for her first four books in her series, Elizabeth produced another book that took you deeper into the “Springbrook Hills” world. Elizabeth’s new book “The Playlist” mimics the same feeling of small-town family and friends turned lovers, similar to her other four novels that bring the story to life.

As an avid reader of small-town romance novels, Elizabeth’s latest book is a must-read. Elizabeth’s relatable main character and warm friendships made me want to go to Springbrook Hill and have my own happy ending. The storyline is easy to follow and the chemistry is off the charts.

This book is a dual POV story of longtime friends Zoe and Alexander. Alexander’s younger sister Luna has been friends with Zoe from the beginning, and their inseparable bond is what brings Alexander and Zoe closer together.

As children, Luna and Zoe created a box where they manifested their lives when they grew up. From the husbands to kids to houses down to weddings, Zoe and Luna had it all planned out with a song for each event. Luna got her list completed when she fell in love with her brother’s best friend, but Zoe is still looking for love and for the life she dreamed of when she was younger.

As an avid reader of small-town romance novels, Elizabeth’s latest book is a must-read.

When a breakup and being fired pushes Zoe to go back to her hometown, Alexander is tasked by her father and boss to give her a reason to stay. With help from his sister, Alexander takes Zoe on a road trip to remember what life was like before she became more focused on what others think.

Much like the rest of the books in the series, Elizabeth writes from her heart. Her words capture the comfort that can only be provided by a small Jersey town. Her story contains a unique take on the friends-to-lovers trope by incorporating a sense of familial love alongside the budding romance.

However, not everything in this book was up to the five-star level. I took issue with a few of the scenes between the two main characters. The wording occasionally felt inappropriate considering the connection between Zoe and Alexander. Some scenes left me confused over what exactly was going on, which made it a bit awkward to read. Things felt a bit rushed, detracting from the rest of the book’s tone and plot.

Throughout the book, I was falling in love with the dynamic between the two characters. Elizabeth’s usage of a road trip romance to help Zoe fall back into love with life will have you reading all the way to the end.

If you are looking for a cheesy romance book set in New Jersey, then give this book a try. You will be pleasantly surprised, and perhaps it will awaken a small-town fantasy you never realized you had.


4/5 Stars

Featured photo courtesy of Min An, Pexels