Charm City Rocks: A Love Story
When a single dad meets the former rock-star crush of his youth, everything they thought they knew about happiness and love is thrown into chaos in this hopeful, heartwarming romantic comedy.
“Bound to charm readers from page one . . . You’ll root for everyone in this sweet love story.”—Elissa Sussman, bestselling author of Funny You Should Ask
Billy Perkins is happy. And why wouldn’t he be? He loves his job as an independent music teacher and his apartment in Baltimore above a record shop called Charm City Rocks. Most of all, he loves his brainy teenage son, Caleb.
Margot Hammer, on the other hand, is far from happy. The former drummer of the once-famous band Burnt Flowers, she’s now a rock-and-roll recluse living alone in New York City. When a new music documentary puts Margot back in the spotlight, she realizes how much she misses her old band and the music that gave her life meaning.
Billy has always had a crush on Margot. But she’s a legitimate rock star—or, at least, she was—so he never thought he’d meet her. Until Caleb, worried that his easygoing dad might actually be lonely, cooks up a scheme to get Margot to perform at Charm City Rocks.
It’s the longest of long shots, but Margot’s label has made it clear that any publicity is an opportunity she can’t afford to miss. When their paths collide, Billy realizes that he maybe wasn’t as happy as he thought—and Margot learns that sometimes the sweetest music is a duet.
Praise for Charm City Rocks: A Love Story
“Bursting with heart and chock-full of pitch-perfect dialogue and disarmingly wonderful characters, Charm City Rocks absolutely sings. I loved everything about it.”—Allison Winn Scotch, New York Times bestselling author of The Rewind
“If Daisy Jones and Emily Henry had a baby, it would be this hilarious and delightful rock-and-roll rom-com.”—Colleen Oakley, USA Today bestselling author of The Mostly True Story of Tanner & Louise
“Endearing, smart, romantic, delightful! . . . Matthew Norman has a particular talent for writing characters we can root for like dear old friends. And our pals in this book are exceptionally charming!”—Allison Larkin, bestselling author of The People We Keep
“Charm is the operative word here and this book is chock-full of it. It is the perfect balance of a story that feels like a fairy tale grounded by utterly believable, loveable, everyman characters. The best love stories are the ones that sneak up on you, that end up being about love in all its forms. Charm City Rocks earns its place in that pantheon.”—Julia Whelan, author of Thank You for Listening
“Charm City Rocks is Matthew Norman’s most charming and engaging novel yet. It is impossible not to fall in love with everyone here: the happy music teacher, his teenage son, his ex-wife and her husband, and the rock star he’s loved from afar and near. This book is an absolute joy—the pinnacle of a long line of fabulous and funny Matthew Norman novels.”—Jessica Anya Blau, author of Mary Jane
“The story follows the characters as they navigate the messy emotions of growing up, growing closer, and growing apart. Full of tongue-in-cheek adoration for the city of Baltimore, from its beers to its obsession with crabs, the story is also packed with witticisms and nostalgic rock references that will be best appreciated by Gen Xers. With clever dialogue, unpredictable twists, laugh-out-loud moments, and heartwarming joy, this is really a book about nice guys. . . . Pure fun.”—Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
“In this gentle romance, Norman takes a thoughtful look at finding love in one’s 40s and how it balances against family, career, and other obligations. . . . Both protagonists come with plenty of baggage, whether it’s Billy’s attachment to the status quo, or Margot’s checkered rock star past, and the way their chemistry pushes them both out of their comfort zones seals the deal on this romance. This is a joy.”—Publishers Weekly