November 10th, 2020
When we heard a novel had been published sharing our name and our interests we just had to get our hands on it!
Warpaint is a novel by J J Maya, the first in the ‘A Makeup Artist in New York Trilogy’; a series about Willow, a Scottish makeup artist who, after a whirlwind romance, moves from Glasgow to New York City.
It is a romantic comedy, set in the beauty halls of department stores both sides of the pond. JJ draws on her experience of working as a flight attendant and being a makeup artist, as well as having lived in the USA for a decade, and this adds richness to the narrative. Teresa Rodriguez, Editor-in-Chief of Haute Living San Francisco, described it as, “a rollercoaster romantic comedy that is both heartbreaking and hilarious…”
Willow, a Scottish makeup artist, falls in love and marries the dashing New Yorker, Rick after a whirlwind romance. But her dream life of living in New York is actually far from the perfect fresh start she had always imagined. Having paid no attention to the warnings of her workmates about her marrying Rick she discovers that the supposed Manhattan loft is actually a bedsit in Queens where Rick’s ex, Isabella, is still in residence. Feeling scorned and rejected, Isabella alerts the authorities to a suspected Green Card Marriage as part of her revenge. This sets off a chain reaction of dramatic consequences and puts Willow’s dream life in jeopardy even before it starts.
There are some twists and turns in the plot, some more unexpected than others. It certainly brings to life the challenges of uprooting your life and moving lock, stock and barrel to another country. The insights into the realities of living in Queens and Hells Kitchen add some grit, and I definitely want to visit some of the cocktail bars! It would have been the perfect beach read, had we been allowed to have holidays this year. You can make it your “curled up on the sofa autumn read” instead. Perfect comfort reading, particularly when paired with a cuppa and a pastry!
This is author JJ Maya’s debut in the world of fiction. She is a luxury lifestyle copywriter whose work has appeared in Wallpaper*Magazine, The Sunday Times Travel Magazine and I-Escape. When she’s not writing the next instalment in Willow’s story she can be found at the cosmetics counter hunting down the perfect red lipstick.
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