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Selected Reviews, Awards & Quotes

Award - IATE

Marilyn was honored to be named Author of the Year by the Illinois Association of Teachers of English (2013).

Pride, Prejudice and the Perfect Bet

“ ‘but for my own part, if a book is well written, I always find it too short.’~Jane Austen
This is exactly how I feel about a Marilyn Brant book, I always want more! Marilyn gives us a story of an unlikely friendship with the age old question, “Can men and women truly be friends?” In her remarkable style, Ms. Brant brings to life two characters we love in literature but know very little about. Jane & Bingley are are often overlooked because they are overshadowed by Lizzie and Darcy and they DO deserve their day in the sun! Retellings and adaptations of Jane Austen classics are my absolute favorite and this story featuring our favorite main secondary characters in P&P is Brilliant! She had me laughing and was pulling at my heart strings from beginning to end! Willoughby was hysterical and Bingley stole the show! This book will have you grabbing your tattered copy of Pride and Prejudice or Sense and Sensibility just to revisit old friends. Marilyn does it again; she breathes new life into beloved characters (which is not an easy thing to do) and does it with such fun and flare. I ADORED THIS BOOK!.”
 ~ Margie L., BestSellers & BestStellars, 5 Diamonds

“I so enjoyed this book. I loved the humour, both Bingley’s and Jane’s, and there were some really funny scenes, such as their surreptitious face pulling contest while having a trip out with Charlie, Bingley’s summary of the artistic movement of pointillism, and Jane’s feelings on Emo haikus. There are a few nods to ‘When Harry Met Sally’ aside from the ‘can men and women ever be friends?’ question, including references to a couple of my favourite scenes from the film. I also loved that fact that when Bingley’s selfish, spoiled cousin Caroline comes to stay that he calls her out on her behaviour – how I would have loved to have seen canon Bingley do that! …I would definitely recommend reading this book…” Ceri T., Babblings of a Bookworm

The Road to You

“In THE ROAD TO YOU, Marilyn Brant takes us on a journey that is at once nostalgic and timeless — a journey to truth, to love, and to self-discovery.” ~ Lexi Ryan, New York Times & USA Today Bestselling Author of UNBREAK ME and WISH I MAY

“Marilyn Brant’s beautifully written new novel takes her talent to a new and darker level. It’s a heartrending tale of loss and of love, a masterful mix of mystery and romance with a good dose of a coming of age tale thrown in. Her meticulous and descriptive narrative paints a perfect picture of landscapes and scenes and gives a realistic look at a crime drama from the 70s, which just happens to be my personal hey-day and a road-trip on the historic Route 66 that will keep readers on the nail-biting edge of their seats until she decides to solve the puzzle and let her audience breathe again. Her characters are all superb but none better than her stars Aurora and Donovan who play their roles perfectly. Those of us who know her well will also see very personal qualities inside these pages and we will be yet again amazed at her talent, her storytelling and her knowledge of the human condition.” ~ DebbieThe Reading Frenzy

Many thanks to B&N General Fiction Book Club Moderator Deb Haupt for selecting THE ROAD TO YOU as one of her Top 20 Novels of 2013

“The Road To You is a brilliant and complex mystery with just the right amount of romance. I absolutely loved every single second of this book. I felt like I was back in the seventies; on a road trip with bad disco, no cell phones, and really cheap motel rooms! The Road To You not only brought the seventies to life on the page, it also had me trying to figure out the puzzle pieces just as diligently (but not nearly so well) as Aurora. If there is one aspect of this book that is absolutely, without a doubt, fantastic, it is the mystery. Marilyn Brant’s skill in devising this incredibly detailed, well thought-out and absolutely mind-blowing! I was amazed by the code in the journal, and Aurora’s ability to decode it. All of the thought put in to how the puzzle fits together is absolutely astounding. You will be completely amazed by this book! I strongly recommend this read for young adults and adults alike.” ~ BritneyLiving Fictitiously

“What an awesome adventure. The Road To You by Marilyn Brant is a phenomenal young adult mystery set in the 70′s and I haven’t read anything like it before. I was trying to describe this book to my family shortly after I read it and found I couldn’t do it justice but kept telling them they should just read it. That is what I am telling you. Read it! The Road To You is a mystery that will have you thinking about things as if the story were real. I went on a road trip shortly after I finished reading it and found myself thinking about the story as I passed landmarks or other travelers. If you like a good mystery, young adult books or road trips, I highly recommend The Road To You.” ~ AmySo Many Reads

“Amazing!!! That is one adjective that I would give The Road to You, by Marilyn Brant. There are twists and turns at every road. You are caught up in the mystery from the first page.  It is a fast paced book, that will keep you entertained. Also, there is some young love involved… In the midst of peril, Aurora and Donovan find attraction sizzling. I loved the chemistry between Aurora and Donovan. Let me tell you this is no mystery book that you have ever read. It is suspenseful that the story will keep you riveted until the very end.  In fact, I read it in one sitting.” ~ SusanCruising Susan Reviews

Pride, Prejudice and the Perfect Match

“Brant couldn’t have done a better job at pulling me into the story and keeping me hooked until the end. I loved how her work was different enough that I felt really out of my element at first, but then brought back to the themes of compassion, forgiveness, and love that really hold Darcy and Elizabeth together. This was an amazingly smart move that left me more than satisfied at the end of this work. In fact, I liked this book so much that I delayed watching the season 3 premiere of Downton Abbey!! (This is a huge deal.)” ~ Kimberly Denny-Ryder, Austenprose

A HUGE thanks to everyone at Austenprose for choosing PRIDE, PREJUDICE AND THE PERFECT MATCH as the #1 Austenesque Contemporary Novel in their Top Austen-Inspired Books of 2013 List!! I’m thrilled! 

“This is a beautifully written book! Author Marilyn Brant takes the very modern day subject of internet dating and explores the possibilities and downfalls, all while giving great hope and clarity to the ideal of “the perfect match”. The wonderful moral shines through the when true love is found, it can move mountains of difficulties and issues. This is a fine read for anyone who believes love really can conquer all and happy ending are still possible!” ~ Darin Godby, 5 Stars/Crowned Heart Review, InD’tale Magazine

“Looking for an Austen-Inspired novel that’s fast-paced, modern, and endearing? Well…the results of your online dating profile show that…Marilyn Brant’s new novel is the “perfect match” for you! Heart-warming, tender, and sweet – Pride, Prejudice and the Perfect Match is a lovely tribute to Jane Austen and her masterpiece.” ~ MeredithAustenesque Reviews

Holiday Man

“As I finished this story [3 am Thursday morning!] the one word that bubbled in my mind as I tried to encompass everything within it was ‘honest’. Make no mistake, there are many more like, hot; sensual; funny; entertaining; warm…romantic. But somehow the word HONEST was the first to pop into my head. Ms. Brant had created these two characters with honesty of who they are within their vastly different upbringings… As these two lonely people meet and consequently embark on an affair, the author is clever in throwing them a curve ball of reality, and that’s where I felt the honesty of a real life and real problems and insecurities intrude into their life and bringing this story closer to the reader. The chemistry that the author created between the two was raw and sizzled throughout the story. For that alone, this is one worthy read! MelanieBookworm2Bookworm

“In the Holiday Man, the holidays sizzle in this cute, sexy read! I love it when the characters have that chemistry…when there fingers touch, and they feel that tingle. Shannon and Bram have that special magic between them, and they are naturally drawn together… It is a fun, quick read, and I read it in one afternoon!” CandySo Little Time

“Kindle bestseller Brant is back with another e-book exclusive that is bound to charm readers far and wide! She introduces us to Door County, Wisconsin, an unexpected place to find love, and welcomes bookworms with open arms to Holiday Quinn where there’s always a vacancy. The sincere connection between the main characters will be warmly embraced and it’s understood why the author mentions that ‘romance is never convenient’.” ~ Jaime AGeraldi, InD’tale Magazine (a 2012 RONE Award Contestant)

A Summer in Europe

“Reading a Marilyn Brant book is like eating a piece of rich chocolate – it gets you excited, it’s deliciously satisfying, and it leaves a smile on your face after you’ve finished it!” ~Simone Elkeles, NY Times & USA Today bestselling author of the PERFECT CHEMISTRY series

“Brant’s newest…distinguishes itself with a charismatic leading man and very funny supporting cast, especially the wonderful elderly characters with their resonant message about living life to the fullest.” Publishers Weekly

“Marilyn Brant’s A Summer in Europe is a wonderful tale that captivates readers as Gwen, transformed by her surroundings, undergoes a change of heart about life…and love.” Doubleday Book Club

“Brant’s charming and engaging tale will allow readers to immerse themselves in the magic and beauty of Europe along with the characters. Although the descriptions of the scenery are amazing, the development of the characters and their unique personalities are what really make this novel shine. What an enjoyable escape!” Melissa ParcelRomantic Times Book Reviews, 4 Stars

“…there is something to be said for a life filled with unexpected surprises, especially if they come in the form of a sexy British physics professor named Emerson.” ~ John CharlesChicago Tribune

“How I wish I were on this European tour with Marilyn Brant’s winsome, wonderful characters. I loved every minute of this delightful novel, from the breathtaking sights to the deliciously described food to the thrilling new experiences.” ~ Melissa Senate, bestselling author of The Love Goddess’ Cooking School and See Jane Date

A Summer in Europe is Brant’s best book yet. A thinking woman’s love story, it swept me away to breathtaking places with a cast of endearing characters I won’t soon forget. Bravissima!” ~ Susan McBride, USA TODAY bestselling author of Little Black Dress and The Cougar Club

“Marilyn Brant has done it again: she has crafted a warm and wise novel filled with characters that live on in your imagination. Make sure your passport is in order. After reading A Summer in Europe you’ll want to book your flight immediately!” ~ Laura Moore, national bestselling author of Remember Me (The Rosewood Trilogy)

A Summer in Europe is a love story told with grace, humor, and the finesse established and new Marilyn Brant readers will enjoy for years to come.” ~ DA KentnerThe Readers’ Writers

Sweet Temptations collection - Medium - jpg

The three novels that comprise The Sweet Temptations Collection (On Any Given Sundae, Double Dipping, and Holiday Man) hit the USA TODAY Bestseller List in September 2013!

Double Dipping

“Brant has provided a delicious story I devoured in one day! I just could not put down this book! Brant has an amazing ability to create real characters with real flaws, from Cait and Garrett’s relationship issues, which are based on previous experiences, to snooty school board members, to loving family members who face their own challenges. I can truly picture these characters in real life. Not only are Brant’s characters believable, but so is the conflict… Brant’s creativity in concocting her own ice cream flavors and tying them into the story is also noteworthy. While reading this book, I often found myself craving ice cream. Definitely worth the price of the book and the pints of ice cream one will consume while reading!” ~ Jakki, Leatherbound Reviews

“As her previous ebook, On Any Given Sundae, this book has all the ingredients that make Marilyn’s stories shine. A strong, independent woman (which I love), a smoldering, sensitive hero (what’s not to love?), and so many mouth-watering food references you’ll want to grab a pint of your favorite before starting the book! …I’m going to tell you the secret of Marilyn’s writing. You ready? She’s real. She writes REAL stories. She writes REAL characters. Any one of her heroines could be your best friend, your sister, you or me. Her stories are so genuine, in fact, I find myself forgetting I’m reading a book. Forgetting these characters aren’t my real-life, flesh-and-blood friends. And long after the last paragraph, I find myself thinking about them and wondering what they’re doing.” Jill Thomas, Just Around the Writer’s Block

On Any Given Sundae

An October 2011 “Hot Pick” from Romantic Times Book Reviews:“You’ll want to read it for the humor and great characters and a plot that’s sure to leave you smiling.”

“This is a charming tale of the popular jock and the shy bookworm, both trying to outlive their high school personas and prove to each other there is more to them than meets the eye. This is truly a root-for-the-underdog, feel-good story and a joy to read.” (LEK) ~ Chicklit Club’s Digital Domain

“Marilyn Brant’s On Any Given Sundae is sweet, sexy, and super fun. I loved the story line, I loved the characters, and I loved the setting…I really, really loved the role played by each and every character in this story. Brant has filled On An Given Sundae with an awesome, unique and fun group of secondary characters, too…and has created a full list of vivid and funny extras. On Any Given Sundae is a great read, especially for the price! ~ Romantic Love Books

“I absolutely positively ADORED this book. From beginning to end, it kept me grinning like an idiot, giggling, and biting my lip in anticipation at the characters. You gotta give credit to Marilyn Brant for coming up with a cast of characters that you might be able to find in your own hometown… I loved this book so much I immediately went to Amazon and bought 2 of the author’s other books. I have no doubts that they will be just as funny.” ~ Laci, Romancing the Book, rating: Magnificent/”Rose that Rules All”

Friday Mornings at Nine

“Brant’s sophomore effort is a brilliant character study of three very different women each asking the question we all wonder about sooner or later: did we make the right choices during our journey and if not, what steps do we need to take in order to live our best life?” ~ Leah Eggleston Krygowski, Manchester Books Examiner & Chicklit Club review, 8/10 rating

Friday Mornings at Nine is the perfect example of a book by an author whose writing just gets better and better. In her second book, Marilyn Brant’s prose is superb…” ~ Pamela Kramer, Chicago Fiction Examiner

“Marilyn Brant masterfully writes on the intricacy of female friendship in a carefully crafted, entertaining and yet philosophical look at love, marriage and family. In Friday Mornings at Nine, we’re dropped into an inner circle of three women who have spent years forging their bonds of trust — but still remain skeptical of opening their hearts too much. Who hasn’t felt that way? That our inner lives are something to be guarded, something to be protected, even with close friends? That’s what struck me most about this novel: how well Brant understands the complexity of women… Fans of women’s fiction shouldn’t miss this novel full of wonderful insights into our friendship and family, people and topics always at the forefront of our minds. I was so pleased with the way this one turned out and highly recommend it and Brant’s debut novel, According to Jane.” ~ Megan Snider, Write Meg reviewer, 4.25 Stars

“Welcome to the world of Friday Mornings at Nine, the most cunningly disguised self-help book on planet Earth.  But before you run screaming from the bookstore, desperately afraid that someone might actually catch you reading a self-help book, take a moment to soak this in: this novel will drag you in, whether you’re open and willing, kicking and screaming, politely interested, or coolly unmotivated.  Read it. … With each page turn, with each brief glimpse into the lives of these lonely females, I found myself more and more captivated by their predicaments.  Each marital problem is different than the others but still circles around the same key issue: the lack of solid a relationship with the self.  Marilyn Brant, author of According to Jane, spins an engaging story around the concept Polonius described so simply, “To thine own self, be true.”  …Ms. Brant’s style is charming, full of wit and humor, and she positively brims with quotable advice for couples.  Even if your relationship is all sunshine and lollipops, a trip through the lives of these women and their subsequent spouses is an education, and will bring you nothing but good things. ~ Shelley DeWees, Austenprose guest reviewer, 4 Stars

“Emotionally packed, it’s hard to put down… What intrigued me most was this book was as much about friendship as it was about what goes on behind the closed doors of marriage. Does anyone really know someone? Do we even know ourselves? Will we have the courage to go after what we want when presented with the options? This isn’t a book about infidelity, and the author was very careful not to go that route or cross that line. A highly recommended women’s fiction read.” ~ Kelly Moran, award-winning author and book reviewer


Marilyn’s debut novel, According to Jane, was the winner of RWA’s Golden Heart Award for Best Novel with Strong Romantic Elements (2007).

According to Jane

“Marilyn Brant’s debut novel is proof that Jane Austen never goes out of style. This is a warm, witty and charmingly original story of a woman coming of age and finding her own happy ending–with a little help from the ultimate authority–Jane Austen herself.” ~ Susan Wiggs, #1 New York Times Bestselling Author

“Entertaining, sincere, real…well, okay, that the acclaimed author, Jane Austen, speaks across the centuries to beleaguered romantic Ellie Barnett is not quite real, but it is fun. An engaging read for all who have been through the long, dark dating wars, and still believe there’s sunshine, and a Mr. Darcy, at the end of the tunnel.” Cathy Lamb, Author of Such a Pretty Face

” ‘Where were the true Darcys?’ That’s the burning question bookish Ellie Barnett has been asking herself since high school when handsome, charismatic Sam Blaine first captured her heart–and then broke it. In this lively, clever novel by Marilyn Brant, Ellie is accompanied along the perilous path of romance by none other than famed novelist and formidable woman Jane Austen, who, for reasons of her own, has taken up residence in Ellie’s head. Ms. Brant wittily parallels the two women’s difficult journey to the understanding that love has the power to transform even the most selfish of men into a ‘true Darcy’. This is a must-read for Austen lovers as well as for all who believe in the possibility of a happily-ever-after ending.” ~ Holly Chamberlin, Author of Tuscan Holiday

A fabulous 5 Regency Star rating from Laurel Ann at Austenprose“What an unexpected, uplifting, and urbane debut novel! To paraphrase Jane Austen’s character Lady Catherine, Marilyn Brant has given us a treasure. Granted that there are hundreds of Jane Austen inspired novels written over the years, this totally unique and original concept of Austen’s ghost inhabiting and advising a modern young woman is brilliant. The play of early nineteenth-century social mores against twentieth-century culture is so droll that I laughed-out-loud several times in total recognition. Like Austen, Brant excels at characterization offering a heroine in Ellie Barnett that I could totally identify with, and a hero in Sam that is so endearingly flawed that any woman worthy of her worn out VHS copy of the 1995 Pride and Prejudice miniseries will be happy to swoon over. Subtly powerful and amusingly acerbic, you will be gently reproved into agreeing in the power of love to transform us all.” A reprint of Laurel Ann’s wonderful 5 Star review is posted in The Jane Austen Centre’s online magazine!

Cheryl Grant at Family Circle’s online magazine, “Inner Circle,” called the novel “A charming book.”

B&N Review selected ACCORDING TO JANE to be on “The Long List” for the week of October 13, 2009! They said the book was “Fresh, original, and lots of fun.”

On January 22, 2010, John Charles of the Chicago Tribune wrote, “Brant infuses her sweetly romantic and delightfully clever tale with just the right dash of Austen-esque wit.”

And many thanks to for including ACCORDING TO JANE on their list of the 100 Best Romance Novels of All Time!

“It’s not what you look at that matters, it’s what you see.” ~Henry David Thoreau