From the New York Times bestselling author of The Bodyguard comes a hopelessly romantic novel about finding love, confronting a haunting past, and figuring out what, and who, really matters.

Coming SUMMER of 2023!!!

“Where to start! Where to start! This book is hands-down, the most unique, original, and beautiful work of art I have read in a long time!”


“How does Katherine Center always write such a damn good story?!”


“I have said it before, and I’ll say it again—Katherine Center can do no wrong. I adored this book. Her characters are endlessly relatable, her love interests bring the swoons, and I finish every book feeling as if I’ve been wrapped in a warm hug. HELLO STRANGER is easily one of my favorite books this year.”



This heart-warming, adorable romcom is a perfect dose of sunshine in this dreary world.”



“Oh my, oh my!! I stayed up half the night finishing this book. It’s Katherine Center’s most brilliant novel yet.”



Want a SIGNED copy?? Click HERE (same as the link above) and choose Blue Willow Bookshop All preorders for Blue Willow will be signed!!! For personalization, add names in the “order comments” box at checkout!!


PRE-ORDER the audiobook:




The main character in HELLO STRANGER has a condition called “acquired apperceptive prosopagnosia,” also known as face blindness. There are two basic types of face blindness: (1) developmental, which is a condition people have all their lives and is most often related to remembering faces, and (2) acquired, which usually results from some type of injury to the area of the brain specific to perceiving faces (traumatic brain injury, stroke).

Damage to the area of the brain that is specialized for perceiving faces makes it impossible to snap the components of the face together into a recognizable whole. People with this condition can see that it’s a face—see the eyes and nose and mouth—but the whole thing never comes together. The best way of thinking about it that I came across in my research was to look at faces upside down. The people below are all famous. You’d probably recognize them if they were right side up. But upside down like this, your brain doesn’t know how to make sense of them. Flip the image right side up to see how many of these folks you recognize!


Scroll down a smidge for answer key!!


To learn more about face blindness, please visit, a site run jointly by Harvard, Dartmouth, and the University of London. The site can connect you with online tests to check your own facial recognition abilities. Both this New Yorker article by Oliver Sacks, and Sadie Dingfelder’s fascinating essay in The Washington Post, My Life with Face Blindness, are very compelling reads with great information about face blindness. The podcast FaceBlind is also a great place to learn more.



*Are you looking for ways to get an advance reader’s copy of HELLO STRANGER? You can apply at the St. Martin’s Press Publishing Group Influencer Outreach page!



“The thing I love most about Katherine Center books is that she writes romance in completely her own way. It’s not really the ‘style’ of contemporary romance, or Women’s Fiction. It feels like its own thing, very genuine and authentic, but still delivering hopeful, heart-swelling romance.”



Katherine Center really can do no wrong. 5 stars. Read it and you’ll love it too.”



Each one of Katherine Center’s books is like a treasured gift. They are not just romance novels though the swoon factor is definitely off the charts. They make you feel good inside, make you believe that no matter what life throws at you, you will be okay. Hello Stranger is no exception. Full of humor, romance, and touchingly true insights, this book is soul food.”



This book was EVERYTHING and so much more.”



“I’m in my pajanket getting the vapors, fanning myself while reading the ending of this book, LOL! Another Katherine Center book that had me at Hello. I love Katherine’s writing style, it’s like a conversation with your best friend—ugly crying then laughing because your friend knows you so well, they can get you to laugh like no one else can. This story was emotionally satisfying and delightfully clever.”



Can I give a book a million stars? Because Hello Stranger deserves them ALL! I’m still buzzing with the joy that comes from finishing this lovely book that completely swept me off my feet from cover to cover.”



Well, you can never go wrong with a Katherine Center novel. Center has the uncanny ability to create a book so comforting that you don’t want to put it down but also don’t want it to end.”



I’m not typically one who stays up well past my bedtime to read a book. I mean let’s be honest, I really value my sleep. But Hello Stranger did this exact thing to me. Nearing midnight, tears bursting from my eyes while I’m simultaneously smiling with joy. I loved Hello Stranger by Katherine Center. LOVED. Katherine Center has a way of writing that makes you feel. You feel the good, the bad, the love, the hurt, the hope, the humor. You feel the characters and believe that you are right with them in the story. If I was a fan of Katherine Center before, I am without a doubt, life-long, fan now. Highly recommend.”



The novel is funny, delightful and bittersweet. The central character is written so well and the ending is so satisfying — Katherine Center has written another great romance. 5 stars!”



“This story was emotionally satisfying and delightfully clever.”



“This book is the latest in a long line of absolute tear your heart out, gorgeous, swoony romances. The best thing about her books is that the heroines always learn to love themselves just as much as they fall in love with the most perfect men. Safe to say I am OBSESSED with this book now. OH, also, do not miss the Author’s Note on this one! She writes such a passionate, intelligent defense of romance as the superior genre, and it is a delight to read.”



“Wow. Hello Stranger is an utterly compelling & entertaining & giddy anticipation-filled read. As always, Katherine Center managed to make me feel so many different emotions at once. From the first chapter all the way to the author’s note . . . Katherine Center’s books always leave me feeling a bit awestruck. I feel uplifted, I feel like I learned something, I feel the joy of having found and truly delighted in a really good story.”



I absolutely was mesmerized by this novel! I truly can’t wait to own a copy for my shelves. As soon as I finish this review I’m reading it again!! This book deserves all the stars, accolades, and love. Charming, captivating and unforgettable! 5 stars!!!” ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️



MAGIC!! Katherine Center did it again. I love, love! Katherine weaves a story you literally can’t put down! It’s just so refreshing to read a book that fills your heart. I laughed, I cried and even learned.”



I simply adore Katherine Center books! I have read at least five and each one is better than the last one I read, if that is even possible. Try as hard as I might, I am unable to pick a favorite — they are all my favorites! It’s easy to devour her books because they are just so delicious, delightful and deeply satisfying. You will always find wit, sincerity and wisdom in Ms. Center’s words and an uplifting story that will fill your heart.”



Such a beautiful story about triumph in the most difficult of times. Absolutely loved it. 5 stars!”



I DEVOURED this book in one sitting. It was the perfect comfort read for the day before Thanksgiving. Everyone knows I adore Katherine and I’ll read anything she’s ever written, but when I tell you that THIS IS MY NEW FAVORITE BOOK. The story was unique (You’ve Got Mail feels), there was tension, and hope, and the happiest ending ever. 🥹”



“Can I give a book more than five stars? This one needs ALL of them! It’ perfection on paper!”



Katherine Center is a solid romance option for me always and this one might be my favourite. I think I read it in two days which is the fastest I’ve read a book in months. I loved the story, the characters, and when the pieces started to slot together it was so satisfying!”



“The kind of book that is unforgettable contains a tangible magic you can’t explain, you just have to experience. Hello Stranger is that type of book. It’s simply storytelling magic.”



I devoured this! The unique plot and the unforgettable characters, particularly the kind and very relatable Sadie, pulled me in immediately. I was at turns laughing, crying, cheering, mad and swooning, and always deeply invested. Even though handled with a light touch, this book makes you think as Center addresses some big themes, including how we often dismiss or take in pieces of information and validate our various opinions, including how we “see” others. Center is an amazing writer, and this is a captivating, magical book and so full of heart. Center says in her Author’s Note that romances bring anticipation and hope, and “this love story really created fantastic anticipation.” And I couldn’t agree more!”



I knew I would love this book because the author is Katherine Center!”



Every time Katherine Center comes out with a new book, it becomes my new favorite. And this one was no exception. Her writing is light and breezy, and even when bad things are happening, you feel hopeful. This was a great story. It had grief and hardship, but also warmth and humor. It was informative, but also swoony and quirky! It was just a joy to read.”



This was such a beautiful and unique book. It explores the concept of grief, perseverance, boldness, truth & love. This is Katherine Center at her best.”



I must, of course, begin this review with the resounding acknowledgment that “Katherine Center has done it again!” But it feels too trite and, quite frankly, like an understatement. Truthfully, Center did not do it again. She never does. Because with each book, she transcends. I began reading Center’s work in March of 2020, when my flavor for dystopian thrillers soured as the world around me turned into an actual dystopia. Finding Center’s books was like finding warmth in the cold. And that’s what each of her books has been for me since. But Hello Stranger takes comfort to the next level.”



Katherine Center is one of those authors who brings us hope when all seems lost and she’s done it again with HELLO STRANGER.”



I want to give this book ONE MILLION STARS! Hands down it is now my favourite and I have read all her books. She and this book are at the top of my list for 2022.”



Katherine Center writes books with heart and Hello Stranger is no exception. This one left me feeling hopeful and ready to do good in the world. Grateful to have read this one!”



When I start a new Katherine Center book I know to turn off my phone, cancel appts.,find a comfy spot and just read. I say this every time but this is my new favorite. Katherine creates characters that are nuanced, real, and fascinating. Her romances are always a cut above the ordinary with unusual plots, wonderful characters, and a joy to her writing that always comes through. This is a wonderful romance book I can easily start reading a second time.”



I am a fan of Katherine Center. I read very little romance, but I always make a point to seek out her new books. Reading each one is like unwrapping a delicious candy and savoring it until the very end.”



This is one of those books you’ll curl up with for a couple of hours and soon discover it’s the middle of the night.”



Katherine Center has done it again!! Already an auto read author for me, her books are always warm and inviting. She has a talent for taking things most people take for granted and showing us, with a swift kick in the behind, how much we are missing out on. This book leaves readers feeling the warm and fuzzies with a side dose of ‘don’t forget to see and appreciate the things around you.'”



Absolutely wonderful. Like, REALLY wonderful. I loved every single word of this entire book and cannot wait to reread it in the future. I stayed up too late and woke up early, eager to continue reading about Sadie.”



If you are looking for a book that has a whole lot of humor, swoony romantic vibes, fantastic main and supporting characters, and a whole lot of heart, this is the book for you. I would give it 10 stars if I could. Somehow Center always manages to speak to my soul.”



Brilliant! Sweet, sad and funny, I didn’t guess everything until the end!”



Once again Katherine Center strikes a great balance of angst, comedy, hope and love. If life had permitted I would have read this book in a day.”



If you want to feel ‘all the feels’ please read this and everything else by Center. I always feel so hopeful and happy when I finish her novels and Hello Stranger did not disappoint. These are truly “feel good” books. I know when I need some help in that department, I can come here, and Center will be there for me & I will soon . . . feel good.”



Katherine Center keeps you enthralled in her storylines and makes the most romantic stories that you with devour and want to reread just to have all the feelings again, over and over!”



“5 stunning stars! Katherine Center is a ‘drop-everything’ author for me. When I was offered the chance to read her newest book, that’s exactly what I did! All other books were pushed aside, and I savored this read! If there was a way to give it 15 stars I would! I toyed with immediately re-reading it, but I think I will save that for a day when I need to reclaim joy!”



Katherine Center does it again. She pulls at my heartstrings and makes me connect with all her characters. This book explores grief, perseverance, boldness, truth & love. You will be in for a ride! Sadie’s journey is funny, delightful, and bittersweet. Hello Stranger was everything I wanted in a book, and I adored every second of it.”



“I want to give this book ONE MILLION STARS! Hands down it is now my favourite and I have read all her books.”



I just love Katherine Center’s books. My only complaint is that this one wasn’t long enough.”



I stayed up into the wee hours of this morning reading, deciding that when I couldn’t keep my eyes open that I was permitted to get some sleep. I rarely do that anymore but I just couldn’t put this book down. Hello Stranger is one of those novels where I felt myself smiling at intervals because it made me happy and definitely made me laugh. This is the book we all need when we want joy and a warm hug—in novel form. A literally literary feel good story.”



Katherine Center has done it again! I’ve read all of this author’s books and while I’ve loved all of them, I have to say that this was my favorite!”



Katherine Center can string any words together and I’ll gladly read them. Her stories bring a fresh take to the genre, and Hello Stranger did that more than ever. Just when you think you have it figured out, think again! There are twists and turns and also so much warmth, humor, and heart. With a narrator who cannot trust her own brain and a story that requires you to take a closer look at every interaction, Hello Stranger once again shows Katherine Center’s strength in finding that magical balance of filling your heart completely and leaving you wanting more.”



My new favorite Katherine Center book! Katherine Center offers us a heart warming, HUG of a story, filled with her trademark humor—and dancing! And, it was EXACTLY what I needed!”



What an absolutely delightful read!! This novel is a brilliant piece of art! This story is so brilliant in its concept—and even when you ‘figure it out’ you simply cannot put it down.”



“Well, this was just an absolute delight of a read. I adore the stories Katherine Center writes, and this was one of my faves. When I read her stories, I find I can’t read them fast enough, and I’m also sad when they’re over and wish it hadn’t ended so quickly! What I love most is the unique premise she has her story. Relationships are at the center of what she writes, but the way they develop is so captivating. This was just a book that had me drawn in with the emotions of Sadie’s experience, and I was rooting for her so, so hard. Also, there is a reflection about romance novels at the end of this one by the author that is a must-read essay.”



Hello Stranger by Katherine Center is one of the best books I’ve read this year!”



I’m in love with Katherine Centers’ plots. In Hello stranger an aspiring artist life blows up in a matter of weeks and she’s left figuring out how to put the pieces back together. Figuratively and literally because she can’t recognize anyone’s face. From the first chapter I knew I was going to enjoy this read. I loved the theme of being forced to look at life differently, wether that be the strangers you’ll never see again or the people who’ve been in front of you the entire time.”



Perfection. I loved this book! I live for Katherine Center books, and I was ecstatic got an early copy of this one! I love every character Katherine creates especially her female leads! All her ladies are perfectly imperfect, charming, funny, lovable and their inner monologues are amazing. I love how the romances are not always the star of her stories and you got so much more depth and plot in her books. The plot here was so unique and interesting and the family relationships themes are top notch! This book was so emotional and uplifting and left me even shedding a few happy tears.”



This is a fantastic, quirky but hearttugging story of friendship, kindness to strangers, stubbornness, art, pets, and love. The love story unfolded in an unexpected manner, with terrifically immersive scenes, and the ENDING! It was a surprising, romantic delight and a great new way to do a black moment/climax for a romance.”


While I might be biased as I love a good Katherine Center love story, this one hit it out of the ballpark. I LOVE LOVE LOVED this unique story about Sadie.”



Katherine Center gets it right every time. This book is sweet, funny, serious, sexy, and meaningful.”



This book! If you’re still considering, just go for it! I couldn’t put it down! It’s a sweet book that made me keep guessing what was gonna happen until the end. I love the little twist even though you start guessing the end it’s still such a good feeling in your heart when you read it. I love Katherine Center Books and I wish I could sign up for a fan club or something! Ever since I read ‘How to Walk Away’ I felt in love with the way she writes, and then came ‘Things You Save in a Fire’ and then ‘Bodyguard’ this year and it just gets better every book.”



She did it again! This is only my second novel I read from Katherine Center but it’s just as amazing as The Bodyguard. I love how unique this concept is and it felt so fresh especially for the romance category.”



I’ve loved every book by Katherine Center. She’s an amazing writer!”



Katherine Center gets it right every time. This book is sweet, funny, serious, sexy, and meaningful. Every time I read one of her books, I know I’m going to get a great story, some fun romance, and a lesson. Tears were shed, I snort laughed, and I commit to asking for help (or at least accepting) help when I need it!”



Another winner from Katherine Center!”



Katherine Center does it again! Hello Stranger pulled me in and I couldn’t read it fast enough. This book will be another hit because Katherine Center knows how to write about hope and finding happiness during challenging times. Her books reach in and tug at my heart strings and make me think about the kind of person I am and who I want to be.”



I just finished this book and immediately needed to write this review. I am so sorry for everyone who doesn’t get the chance to read this one early, as it is a long wait til the July 2023 release, but it will be worth it! This story was wonderful! I binged this in one sitting and it was completely worth it. Beautifully written and filled with just enough angst and romance (closed-door) to have me really rooting Sadie and her future.”



“This is one of my most favorite contemporary authors. This book was no exception! The character Sadie had so much going against her and just kept plowing along with love of her beloved dog, Peanut! I will think about this book for quite some time.”



“I am a lover of all books Katherine Center. This book was enlightening, real, and just absolutely heartwarming. So well done by Katherine Center, yet again. A top pick for 2023!”



I loved the lighthearted take on heavy, deep, human things like love, dreams, forgiveness, and belonging. This book was like nourishing comfort food to me, and I think it will meet with great success!”



Katherine Center is a master at delivering stories filled with interesting characters facing difficult situations with courage and strength and lifting her readers up.”



I’ve read this author before and I have to say this is by far my favorite of hers to date. The characters were so well written, it was so interesting, and I just loved it.”



This was everything I wanted in a book. I ADORED it. Sadie was so relatable and Joe the neighbour was to DIE FOR. Let’s not forget about those plot twists and turns AHHH IM OBSESSED. I will never forget about this book. This will always hold a place in my heart.”



“Once again Katherine Center has hit it outta the park! There’s humor, unique characters, and the absolute BEST Author’s Note at the end.”



Center Strikes Again. This is another feel-good story from Center that takes an unusual situation and uses it to show how even suddenly-forced differences can be used to tremendous effect—without ever feeling like she is white-washing the difficulties of the given condition at hand. Indeed, Center goes into detail showing the various struggles here, but also how they can be overcome and adapted to. Along the way, we also get a strong and relatable tale of finding yourself and finding what truly matters to you… and some pretty hilarious sequences as well. Very much recommended. “



Everything comes to a complete stop when a new Katherine Center book is released. My #1, must read, comfort books.”



Katherine Center books are my absolute favorite and I was BEYOND excited to get this one early! And it was absolutely no surprise that this one was another 5 star favorite for me! It was a complete joy to read from start to finish, even though it definitely covered some heavier topics and pulled at the heart strings.”



The book itself was delightful. Just as all her books have been. I absolutely love her style of writing. I love the witty banter. I love the female leads. I love that I feel like I’m learning something with each book. I love the mental processing of the main character and how “in their head” they are. You really get an image of the pain they are struggling through and then you get to feel all the hope!”



I 100% recommend this book and don’t miss the amazing author’s note at the end.”



I’ll only read for a few more minutes . . . the famous last words of any bookworm, and in my case, were said last night. I had started Hello, Stranger and wanted to get just a little bit more before I went to bed. Naturally, I stayed up late until I finished it, being unable to put it down. It’s been awhile since I did that with a book, which I guess is just a testament to how much I enjoyed this story. Center has a way of marrying the mundane with the comical with the outlandish to create a story that is nothing short of pure sweetness. Hello, Stranger was no different.”



“Trust me when I say this book is a total gem and will leave you feeling hopeful, which as the author points out at the end, is exactly why we read romance and rom-com novels to begin with.”



“I will never forget about this book. This will always hold a place in my heart.”



I loved it. Katherine Center can do no wrong. She remains an autobuy for me. Read this in one sitting the day I got it!”



Honestly, I didn’t think anything could beat The Bodyguard, Katherine Center’s most recent release. I was wrong—I just stayed up until 1 AM, reading Hello Stranger in one sitting! I adored everything about this book: the protagonist, the love interests, the pup (I’m a sucker for any book with pets)! Would strongly recommend to any person who loves a sweet romance.”



Katherine Center just makes my heart happy! Most of her books make me smile despite some hard things that she writes about, and Hello Stranger is no different. Fun, funny, and delightful! A must read if you want to be optimistic about people and life!”



Katherine Center books are always a joy to read.”



Ms. Center does a wonderful job guiding us through Sadie’s emotional journey and all the highs and lows along the way with her core spirit that never lets her give up. This is a must-read.”



I’m giving Hello Stranger all the stars for giving me all the feels! I’ve already decided that I’m destined to love anything that Katherine Center writes, but Hello Stranger was even more than I was expecting.”



Just when I thought The Bodyguard was my favorite Kathrine Center book, she surprised me AGAIN with Hello Stranger! I don’t want to say too much in case I accidentally spoil it, but the topics, the banter, the friendship and romance was so well written!! If you get the chance, PLEASE read this book!”



“Katherine Center does it again! I absolutely adored this book! It was so unique and beautifully written. Sadie is such a strong character that will have you falling in love with her. I loved reading her journey dealing with love, loss, and major life challenges.”



This is my sixth book by this delightful author. Her books are fun and hopeful and, because they fall into the romance genre, have happy endings. I highly recommend curling up in your ‘pajanket’ and treating yourself to this wonderful story because we could all use more hope and love in our lives.”