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Well Met by Jen DeLuca

Well Met

We love supporting debut authors. Congrats, Jen DeLuca, on your first book!
Early Release
This is an early release that's only available to our members—the rest of the world has to wait 'til next month to read it.

by Jen DeLuca

Quick take

A cute romance that makes us kind of want to go to a Renaissance Faire. (Shakespeare knowledge not required.)

Good to know

  • Illustrated icon, Icon_Romance


  • Illustrated icon, Icon_FastRead

    Fast read

  • Illustrated icon, Icon_Happy


  • Illustrated icon, Icon_LightRead

    Light read

Why I love it

Brianna Goodman
BOTM Editorial Team

Whenever I show off my hometown of Annapolis, MD, to first-time visitors, I make them do the following things: eat crabs, sit by the bay, and spend a day at the Renaissance Festival. If that last one gave you pause, allow me to convince you: Giant turkey legs! Lots o’ booze! You can throw an axe, watch grown men wield spears, and, inexplicably, slide down a magic carpet-themed slide! Needless to say, I’ve got serious Ren Fest nostalgia.

But even if you’ve never sported a flower crown or stuffed your face with funnel cake, there’s so much to love about Well Met, a rom-com set at a summer Ren Fest. It’s the story of Emily, a 20-something who, after a bad breakup, moves in with her sister to take care of her niece. Aunt duties lead her to volunteer at the local Ren Faire—as a tavern wench no less—where she’s quick to butt heads with Simon, the uptight schoolteacher in charge of the festival. But when Simon dons his pirate costume, a new and freer personality comes with it, and suddenly Emily finds herself wanting to be more than just enemies...

I’m not gonna lie, when I first picked up this book, I was expecting it to be a little too fluffy—but what I found instead was a story that had me completely emotionally invested. Emily is smart, witty, and devoted to her family, and I loved watching her unpack the puzzle that is grumpy Simon. This is a book about friendship, beautiful men in kilts, and figuring out where you belong—and the romance at its core is endearing to witness. Well Met is funny, sincere, and feel-good in all the best ways.

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Emily knew there would be strings attached when she relocated to the small town of Willow Creek, Maryland, for the summer to help her sister recover from an accident, but who could anticipate getting roped into volunteering for the local Renaissance Faire alongside her teenaged niece? Or that the irritating and inscrutable schoolteacher in charge of the volunteers would be so annoying that she finds it impossible to stop thinking about him?

The faire is Simon's family legacy and from the start he makes clear he doesn't have time for Emily's lighthearted approach to life, her oddball Shakespeare conspiracy theories, or her endless suggestions for new acts to shake things up. Yet on the faire grounds he becomes a different person, flirting freely with Emily when she's in her revealing wench's costume. But is this attraction real, or just part of the characters they're portraying?

This summer was only ever supposed to be a pit stop on the way to somewhere else for Emily, but soon she can't seem to shake the fantasy of establishing something more with Simon, or a permanent home of her own in Willow Creek.

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Check out a preview of Well Met.

Member thoughts

All (9694)
All (9694)
Love (6136)
Like (3117)
Dislike (441)
9789 ratings
  • 63% Love
  • 32% Like
  • 5% Dislike
  • Whittier, CA

    5⭐️♥️ I loved this book! I loved Emily and Simon!! A lovely RomCom book! So glad it’s my August book pick!! Loved it so much. I’m even more tempted to go to a Renaissance Faire. & great Summer Reading

  • Lubbock, TX

    I really enjoyed this book. It had some real laugh out moments and i love that in a book. I liked all the Characters but, I have to admit, Emily could be a little too insecure for me at times. 

  • Cando, ND

    This book was so sweet, you had to love Emily and Simon’s story! Once I got into it I couldn’t put it down. Their love was so easy to follow and want to succeed! One of the best I’ve read in a while!!

  • Newington, CT

    Oh my heart, I wish I didnt wait so long to read this one! I loved the Renaissance Faire plot to this. I truly felt like I was there at the fair. If you’re looking for a romance, I highly suggest it!

  • South Lake Tahoe, CA

    A charmingly witty enemies-turned-lovers tale set behind the scenes of a small-town renaissance faire. Ultimately, it’s finding the courage to believe in yourself despite any hardships you’ve endured.

  • Macon, GA

    Didn’t think I’d enjoy a romance set in a Ren Faire, but wow I loved this book! The characters were wonderful, the setting was interesting. Not a big fan of the end conflict, but overall it was great!

  • Estero, FL

    For fans of Renaissance fairs this is for you. The book makes you feel like you’re part of the fares, the events that take place, and warm your heart with the romance that take place within the story

  • Grand Forks, ND

    I love love love this book. I was ready to reread it right when I finished. Very well written and I loved how they didn’t like each other at first, because usually it’s like love at first sight.❤️

  • New Providence, NJ

    This is delightful. It’s been a while since I smiled & swooned so much. This captures Ren Faire 100% & has a ton of heart. I loved Emily. I wish we could’ve gotten more Simon insight, but I loved it.

  • Boardman, OH

    The ren fair was a little nerdy and not typically something I’d be into. BUT the characters were so like-able and their flirting and developing relationship was intriguing... I couldn’t put it down.

  • Highland, IN

    It is very hard for me to get into a book right away. However, this book would not let me put it down. It really spoke to me and I’m not sure why. I loved it!!! Definitely going to read it again!!!!!!

  • Bellevue, NE

    Really enjoyed reading it. Fast read. I really love DeLuca’s writing style, it’s not trying too hard with horrible with random slang or anything, like others books. It’s very relatable, I loved it

  • Mesa, AZ

    Amazing read! I think this was the quickest I’ve read a book all year. I could NOT put this book down. 5 stars all the way. Witty, romantic, sexy, fun. Nice light and easy read compared to some of the

  • Salem, OR

    I don’t know quite what I expected when I selected Well Met for my BOTM, I just thought it sounded interesting. But I absolutely ADORED it. I’m even loaning it out to a friend who will love it, too!

  • Raleigh, NC

    I truly enjoyed this book. I felt the characters were compelling & captivating. It’s a quick read, full of laughter & drama. It was a perfect romcom book, that also had an empowering self-esteem theme

  • Kingston, ID

    I am not usually a romance reader, but I needed to order a book and choose Well Met. I loved it! It wasn’t the mushy books I have read in the past, but it had a real plot that held my interest. Origin

  • Wichita, KS

    Look - I never thought I’d be into Ren Faire, but this book might have changed my mind. It’s a familiar plot, but the charm is in how well the entire thing is executed. It feels fresh and exciting!

  • Ponderay, ID

    I really enjoyed this book. I could’ve done with out the intense sex scene (I felt like I was invading the characters personal space). It was a cute story. Loved the captain and the renaissance faire.

  • Shelbyville, TN

    I loved this book! The characters were very real, and I found myself really identifying with them. I love the setting too. It wasn’t cheesy, and made me want to work at a Renaissance Faire! Awesome!

  • Bridgeton , NJ

    Absolutely loved this book! I loved the quirkiness of it along with the subject matter presented. It wasn’t all peaches and sunshine and I enjoyed that aspect of it! I completely devoured this book!

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