It’s four innings into an Orioles victory when Emma meets Mabel. Their flirty first encounter kicks off the sweetest of summers. One of Blue Ridge Mountain hiking, river floating, and steamy, coffee-fueled mornings. But as the summer closes, Mabel’s insecurities about her same-sex attraction emerge. She heads back to college. Without Emma.
Over the next four years, Emma juggles temporary loves, a big move, and new jobs, all while trying to shove down an imagined fairytale outcome with Mabel. Despite distance, Mabel keeps finding her way back into Emma’s life, forcing Emma to consider whether it’s some grand design bringing the two of them back together.
GCLS Goldie Awards
Mabel and Everything After — Finalist, Contemporary Romance: Short Novels.
FROM THE AUTHOR
"I went to college in Shepherdstown, WV. The opening location of Mabel and Everything After. The “Sweet Shoppe” that Emma works at is based off a real café: Shepherdstown Sweet Shop Bakery. In college, after autumn rolled in, I’d swing by often for Hazelnut Coffee with a dash of cinnamon. Every brick building on German Street oozes history. It’s not just the main street though. It’s the mountains at dusk, the Sycamore trees that tower along the river. Everything about the town is magic. Fun to write about. More fun to visit.
Emma and Mabel are the two main characters. They are the pieces of people I know. Pieces of me, too. The style, the demeanor, the language, all pulled from friends, strangers, old flings, my wife. That’s what most of my writing is…a compilation of the people I’ve stumbled across, the cities I’ve stayed. Mabel’s character was a particularly fun one to imagine up. Her early struggle with her sexuality is something I’ve witnessed a dozen different times. She’s wildly willing and curious, until she overwhelms herself with perceived expectations. It’s all part of growing up. Getting to know yourself. To stretch and let yourself be. Something I’m still doing. Something I hope to always do."
Jessica R. - I loved this book. Emma and Mabel are everything. This book was everything. Thank you so much Hannah Safren for writing your love story for the world to see.
Caroline B. - All the feels! This is a book for those who believe in love at first sight. But it's not only about it, it's what happens after, when it's not the right time to be together, but it's a soulmate love. I rooted so much for Emma and Mabel in those four years. Their summer love was beautiful to read, but their growing up was what I needed to read as well.
Della B. - In Mabel and Everything After we are gifted with a heartwarming story of Emma and Mabel’s circuitous journey to each other. Safren has a distinctive voice with her writing style. She displays a depth and maturity with this being her second novel. Her storytelling reflexes have been honed to perfection. This is by far my favourite novel of 2022.
T. Geist - I LOVE love stories that take their time. I'm a big fan of realism, and sometimes you meet the one, but the timing is all off. But with stories like this one, you also get to see such growth of the characters, and that itself is a beautiful journey.
This book is told entirely from Emma's POV, and I thoroughly enjoyed her as a character. She was sweet and real. She had normal thoughts about her life and loves, so I could relate to her. I also loved Mabel "Mae" through her eyes. And in the end, you knew they were meant for each other once life settled down.
Rebecca T. - We start with Emma and Mabel meeting in the summer of 2008 and saying goodbye at the end of it. From there, we follow as they flit in and out of each other's lives over the years. I flew through this one in a single sitting. Really loved reading about Emma and Mabel, I felt genuinely emotional about these two.
Ashlee G. - This was a very consuming story; I was so invested in the HEA for them both. I really liked the idea that you may meet your match before being ready but still be able to work it out in the end. The book is told from Emma's perspective, so we see a lot of her daily struggles and growth as a young adult during a tumultuous time. …This was a great book and I'm looking forward to future books by Hannah Safren.
Leah M. - Mabel and Everything After by Hannah Safren is a new adult coming-of-age romance that highlights how important timing is with love…. This is a heartwarming romance but has some bittersweet moments as well. They both have a lot of growing up to do and must go through some painful truths before they’re able to find their happily ever after. This really touched my heart, and I was on pins and needles wanting them to finally get together. I highly recommend this and can’t wait to see what Safren does next.
Simone R. - Mabel and Everything After was everything I wanted it to be and more. A lovely coming-of-age new adult, college…romance, that was very lovely to witness. Loved spending time with Mabel and Emma.
Elizabeth S. - Mabel and Everything After is a really lovely, sapphic, coming of age new adult romance that spans four years. The writing style was very easy to read in a way that was enjoyable. I would highly recommend.