The Complexities of Romance

Bolu Babalola on celebrating love that centers on women

Jul 5, 2022

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As a writer, I’m all about celebrating love that centers on women: our desires, and being desired, and being empowered by love… and Honey & Spice, my debut novel, is no different in that respect!

Honey and Spice is a campus rom com set in England that centers on Kiki Banjo, a girl with a sharp tongue and a soft heart (even though she tries to hide it). On her radio show, she gives relationship advice to the women of Whitewell University. There is one particular guy she has warned her girls about: Malakai Korede. And of course—because this is a rom com—through a series of events, she ends up in a fake relationship with him to salvage her reputation with her listeners, the demographic she loves and treasures so much. Malakai’s also hoping to save his reputation through the arrangement. But obviously things aren’t as simple as they seem…

My book explores the complexities of romance—how appearances can be deceiving, learning to let people in, learning to trust someone, and building a community (not just for the main couple, but for the whole girl gang at Whitewell). It’s a sexy romance that also celebrates the importance of friendship.

I really loved getting to know Kiki and Malakai and their whole crew, and I learned so much from them—I didn't want to leave! Kiki and Malakai were a delight to create. It was like I was just a vessel for them as I wrote.

I can’t wait for you to meet the gang at Whitewell University! I can’t wait for you to get to know Kiki! I can’t wait for you to have a crush on Malakai! I really hope you love Honey and Spice.

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