The Shoe Diaries (The Friendship Chronicles, 1) by Darby Baham releases today in the Contemporary Romance genre.
It’s never too late to put your best foot forward.
From the outside, Reagan “Rae” Doucet has it all: a coveted career in Washington, DC, a tight circle of friends and a shoe closet to die for. When one of her crew falls ill, however, Rae is done playing it safe. The talented but unfulfilled writer makes a “risk list” to revamp her life. But forgiving her ex, Jake Saunders, might be one risk too many…
From Harlequin Special Edition: Believe in love. Overcome obstacles. Find happiness.
The Friendship Chronicles/Book 1: The Shoe Diaries
“Reminiscent of Sex and the City and the Shopaholic series in the best possible way. Her stories are a lot of fun and yet she still tugs at your heartstrings.”–Gail Chasan, Special Edition Editor
The Shoe Diaries Sales Links
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Bright and early on a Saturday morning, I found myself in a swanky gym locker room, less than a fifteen-minute walk from my apartment. Robin, Jenn and I had spent the past week sitting beside Christine’s bed more than anywhere else, but in desperate need of a distraction, I’d agreed to join Rebecca at a morning spin class at our local gym. And while I’d jumped at the chance to do something, anything really, other than think about Christine’s drip-drop slow recovery, it dawned on me not too soon after I met up with her that there was one small problem with me agreeing to the class: I hated spin.
Like, literally hated everything about it. It wasn’t that I didn’t think it could help; I knew a lot of people who swore by its health benefits, and certainly knew I’d be guaranteed to have an hour off from worrying. But over the years, spinning had become almost cult like with its many variations, such as Soul Cycle, Trap Cycle and how could I forget the one that claimed it felt more like working out in a nightclub? Beyond even that, the thing I disliked most about spin was the way my butt felt during the class. Everyone always said that eventually your butt gets used to the feeling of the bike, but when I’d tried it before…nah.
Regardless, there I was, putting on my spin sneakers on the wood-grain floors, marveling at the rotation of women coming in and out of the doors, looking like the exact models you might expect to see in spin class ads: blond hair tied in either a loose high ponytail or twirled in an up-do that took thirty minutes to do, but seemed effortless; Lululemon workout gear, S’well water bottles and enough sweat that they glistened, but not so much where they were actually drenched. I glanced up to see if Rebecca looked as nervous as I felt.
“Are you sure we’re ready for this?” I asked, trying to give us one last shot at running away.
“Ha, yes, I’m sure.” She paused. “I mean, kind of sure.”
I could sense her hesitation. Maybe she, too, was worried that we weren’t really the duo that fit in with the rest of the spin-bots before us? Even if we did have some things in common with them.
“You know our butts are going to be on fire afterward, right?” I asked, anxiously making sure the pink Velcro on my turquoise-and-white sneakers was fully snapped closed so that the shoes didn’t become a death trap for me on the bike pedals.
“Yeah, I know.” Rebecca’s once assured voice had been replaced with a nervous chuckle, and I remembered exactly why we were friends. Neither of us felt entirely comfortable where we were, but we were going to try it together. “But we’ve tried other things before, and it worked out. I’m sure this will be fine. Remember when we did Zumba this summer for a couple months? That was fun!”
“Zumba was fun—wait, why did we stop going there again?”
“Umm, great question,” she said, walking over to the water fountain to fill her own S’well water bottle. “Honestly, I think it’s because we just didn’t make the time for it. Who wants to go to Zumba when there’s happy hours, right?”
AUTHOR Bio and Links:
Darby Baham (she/her) is a debut author with Harlequin Special Edition and a New Yorker of five years who sometimes desperately misses the sprawling shoe closet she had while living in Maryland. She’s had personal blog posts appear in The Washington Post’s relationship vertical and has worked in the communications industry for more than two decades. The New Orleans, LA native is also a lover of big laughs and books that swallow you into their world. Her first book, The Shoe Diaries, debuts in 2022.
Exploring the Shoe Diary
There is a special connection that women have with the items found in their homes. For some, it’s with their favorite jeans, the purses delicately hanging in their closets, or the jewelry or books they’ve acquired over time. For me, it’s always been with my shoes. When I lived in Maryland, I could literally bring someone into my shoe closet and tell them my life story through the shoes that were in it.
These cobalt blue Jessica Simpson heels? Oh yeah, I wore those on my first trip to Europe, skipping through the streets of Paris with some of my best friends. These navy and silver Christian Diors? Yep, had those on when I attempted to seduce an ex and fell flat on my face. And how could I ever forget the suede, black, open-toed heels that the former love of my life zipped up my ankles before we and several of our friends headed to a beautiful and bittersweet Mardi Gras ball?
Enter The Shoe Diaries, the first book in my Friendship Chronicles series. It’s a book about a young woman and a series about her friends, each one trying to figure out her path in life, love, and everything in between, all with their flyest shoes in tow. The Shoe Diaries and the second book, Bloom Where You’re Planted, are both largely set in Washington, DC, so readers can get a taste of what it’s like to be a young Black woman in the nation’s capital, a place that is known for brunching and happy hours, politics, and is allegedly good for dating—though some of my characters would beg to differ. They’ll also be able to follow along as Reagan and her friends experience all the ups and downs of life in their late 20s/early 30s and as they travel to various places, including New Orleans (my hometown), London, Paris, and New York.
Author Website www.DarbyBaham.com
This post is part of a tour. The tour dates can be found here:
- a $50 Amazon/BN.com gift card