top of page

ARC/ALC Review: Hello Stranger by Katherine Center

Release date: 11 July 2023

Rating: 5/5

Narrator: Patti Murin

Synopsis: Love isn’t blind, it’s just little blurry.

Sadie Montgomery never saw what was coming . . . Literally! One minute she’s celebrating the biggest achievement of her life—placing as a finalist in the North American Portrait Society competition—the next, she’s lying in a hospital bed diagnosed with a “probably temporary” condition known as face blindness. She can see, but every face she looks at is now a jumbled puzzle of disconnected features. Imagine trying to read a book upside down and in another language. This is Sadie’s new reality with every face she sees.

But, as she struggles to cope, hang on to her artistic dream, work through major family issues, and take care of her beloved dog, Peanut, she falls into—love? Lust? A temporary obsession to distract from the real problems in her life?—with not one man but two very different ones. The timing couldn’t be worse.

If only her life were a little more in focus, Sadie might be able to find her way. But perceiving anything clearly right now seems impossible. Even though there are things we can only find when we aren’t looking. And there are people who show up when we least expect them. And there are always, always other ways of seeing.



Katherine Center is absolutely hands down one of my new favorite romance authors. I discovered The Bodyguard because of a bookish friend’s recommendation, and now I’m in the process of binging all of Center’s books. I even bought out all of the titles BOTM currently has in stock (and Hello Stranger is a July 2023 main pick!). This is serious.

Center’s light-hearted, no-spice romances are my new go-to contemporary romance reads. I loved the heartfelt, real world issues juxtaposed with happy romance that, in this book, was such a great story of people falling in love and the best miscommunication trope I’ve seen used ever.

Sadie is such a positive FMC, and her love interest, whom I will only vaguely reference because I shall not spoil plots, were so great together. Oh, I just loved this book. It’s a must read, even if you only get it from the library. If you’re a fan of romance without the graphic sexual content but still like the sensuality of two people’s attraction and falling in love with one another, you’ll love this book.

Once again, Patti Murin does a great job bringing Center's story to life (Murin also narrates The Bodyguard by Katharine Center). I loved the dramatic reading, the great character voices, and the narration overall was completely immersive.

My thanks to NetGalley for the eARC and ALC, for which I willingly give my own, honest opinion.

117 views2 comments


These are also the types of contemporary love stories I go for. However, I bailed about 3 chapters into The Bodyguard, (not sure if it was the narrator or the story or both). However after reading the synopsis I have a theory on the 2 love interest(s). Now, if I’m correct, and I’d be shocked/disappointed if I wasn’t, it would very much increase my interest in reading this love triangle (because I normally avoid love triangles ;)

Story Eater
Story Eater
Jul 10, 2023
Replying to

Love triangle for this book, Hello Stranger? 🤐. Read this one. The love triangle thing in this one will not aggravate you, I promise. 😊

bottom of page