Ramon and Julieta

Photo of Ramon & Julieta paperback with multicolored roses

Ramon & Julieta by Alana Quintana Albertson

Publisher: Berkley Romance
Publication Date: February 1, 2022
Genres: Contemporary Romance

Book Review

Ramon Montez is a career-focused businessman, currently running his father’s Taco King empire. His latest project brings him to the Barrio Logan neighborhood of San Diego, where he and his father plan to buy the block and build a new flagship restaurant. Celebrity chef Julieta Campos is struggling to keep her restaurant in Barrio Logan when she finds out her landlord is selling the building. Fearful for her business and her community, she is furious when she finds out the new owner plans to close her restaurant to turn the location into a Taco King. A Day of the Dead celebration brings Ramon and Julieta, but can they stay together when their goals are so at odds?

Ramon & Julieta is a vibrant novel that alternates perspectives in the third person between Ramon and Julieta. It draws inspiration from Romeo and Juliet, while also having a refreshingly new take on the story. Ramon and Julieta have palpable chemistry right from their first meeting at the Dia de Los Muertos celebration. Ramon plays the guitar for Julieta, helps her honor her dead father, and sweeps her off her feet in the process.

A major theme of this story is gentrification and its impact on the communities. Barrio Logan is a predominantly Mexican-American community filled with small businesses owned by members of the community. When Taco King buys the block and raises the rent, it threatens the culture of the community and the livelihood of the people who live there.

One of my favorite things about Ramon and Julieta is the vivid descriptions. I loved all the scenery of the various neighborhoods of San Diego and the surrounding areas! It’s somewhere I’ve always wanted to visit, and the descriptions make it easy to imagine. The only thing better than the settings is the descriptions of the amazing food Julieta creates. The tacos alone sound fabulous!

Thank you to BookSparks and Berkley Romance for the review copy! All opinions are my own.

Synopsis from Goodreads

Ramón Montez always achieves his goals. Whether that means collecting Ivy League degrees or growing his father’s fast-food empire, nothing sets Ramón off course. So when the sexy señorita who kissed him on the Day of the Dead runs off into the night with his heart, he determines to do whatever it takes to find her again.

Celebrity chef Julieta Campos has sacrificed everything to save her sea-to-table taqueria from closing. To her horror, she discovers that her new landlord is none other than the magnetic mariachi she hooked up with on Dia de los Muertos. Even worse, it was his father who stole her mother’s taco recipe decades ago. Julieta has no choice but to work with Ramón, the man who destroyed her life’s work–and the one man who tempts and inspires her.

As San Diego’s outraged community protests against the Taco King take-over and the divide between their families grows, Ramón and Julieta struggle to balance the rising tensions. But Ramón knows that true love is priceless and despite all of his successes, this is the one battle he refuses to lose.

About the Author

Headshot of author Alana Albertson

Alana Albertson is a multi-award winning author, current President of Romance Writers of America’s Contemporary Romance Chapter and the former President of both Romance Writers of America’s Young Adult and Chick Lit chapters. Alana Albertson holds a Masters of Education from Harvard University and a Bachelor of Arts in English from Stanford University. A recovering professional ballroom dancer, Alana currently writes contemporary romance, new adult and young adult fiction. She lives in San Diego, California, with her husband, two young sons, and four dogs. When she’s not spending her time playing with her sons, dancing, or saving dogs from high kill shelters through Pugs N Roses, the rescue she founded, she can be found watching episodes Homeland, Devious Maids, or Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders: Making the Team.

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