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It Happened One Fight

Out now!


"It Happened One Fight is essentially my perfect read—a funny, playful, sexy romp through Old Hollywood (and Reno!) that just delighted me at every turn. Lenker’s debut is a loving homage to the classic screwball comedy, told in a fresh new voice romance readers are sure to fall for.” — Emily Henry, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Book Lovers


Joan Davis is a movie star, and a damned good actor, too. Unfortunately, Hollywood only seems to care when she stars alongside Dash Howard, Tinseltown’s favorite leading man and a perpetual thorn in Joan’s side. She’s sick of his hotshot attitude, his never-ending attempts to get a rise out of her—especially after the night he sold her out to the press on a studio-arranged date. She’ll turn her career around without him. She’s engaged to Hollywood’s next rising star, after all, and preparing to make the film that could finally get her taken seriously. Then, a bombshell drops: thanks to one of his on-set pranks gone wrong, Dash and Joan are legally married.


Reputation on the line, Joan agrees to star alongside Dash one last time and move production to Reno, where divorce is legal after a six-week residency. But between on-set shenanigans, fishing competitions at Lake Tahoe, and intimate moments leaked to the press, Joan begins to see another side to the man she thought she had all figured out, and it becomes harder and harder to convince the public—and herself—that her marriage to Dash is the joke it started out as.

Praise for It Happened One Fight

"In her lively debut, Maureen Lenker pulls back the curtain on 1930s Hollywood with this romantic tale of a smart, ambitious starlet and a farmboy-turned-playboy actor. Readers will have great fun following the twists and turns of Reno divorces, run-ins with difficult directors, and an Academy Awards show unlike any other—along with fascinating glimpses into industry powerplays. It Happened One Fight is aces!" 

— Deborah Harkness, #1 New York Times bestselling author of the All Souls Trilogy

It Happened One Fight is a knockout of a debut romance! Maureen Lee Lenker pays homage to the Golden Age of Hollywood with pitch-perfect period details, snappy pacing, and a nuanced exploration of the cost of fame and the masks we wear to protect ourselves. You’ll smile and swoon as the gutsy, glamorous heroine and her cocky, charismatic leading man banter and battle their way to a hard-won and heartfelt happily ever after. What a wonderful, rollicking ride!"

—Lenora Bell, USA Today bestselling author of How the Duke Was Won

"An absolutely delicious historical romance set in the Golden Age of Hollywood, this one delivers.  Married by accident? Forced proximity while making a movie? They don’t even like each other (but oh, of course they do)? Sign me up! Dash and Joan are a fantastic couple and this book is full of banter and rivalry and the best kind of romance. Get ready for your close up — you’ll be swooning like an Old Hollywood starlet after reading this one.  "

— Sarah MacLean, New York Times bestselling author of The Bareknuckle Bastards series

"It Happened One Fight is a frolicking, pitch-perfect homage to the golden age of Hollywood. Dash and Joan—and their gorgeous transatlantic accents!—practically leap off the page. Maureen Lee Lenker's sparkling debut is an absolute delight for any classic film buff."

— Xio Axelrod, USA Today bestselling author of The Girl with Stars in Her Eyes

"It Happened One Fight marries the sparkling, romping energy of Hollywood’s golden age with a clear-eyed look at the emotional cost of success in a man’s world—and the buoying effect of love. Davis and Dash call to mind the great pairings of the era, but lucky us, we get to see inside their heads in a way we never could with Bogart and Bacall."

— Jenny Holiday, USA Today bestselling author of Duke, Actually

"It Happened One Fight is proof that no one knows 1930s Hollywood romance better than Maureen Lee Lenker. This book is how you do witty banter!"

— Nisha Sharma, critically acclaimed author of My So-Called Bollywood Life

"Maureen Lee Lenker gives all the old-school feels of Fred and Ginger, Bacall and Bogart, with Davis and Dash in the vintage Hollywood love affair, It Happened One Fight. Fast-paced, witty, and ensconced in the right headlines, readers will be drawn to a bold heroine trying to make her way out of the gossip columns and onto Oscar wins, but that pesky thing called love upends the best-made plans. Fall in love with the 1930s film-noir with a classic romance by Lenker's golden pen."

— Vanessa Riley, award-winning author of Island Queen and Queen of Exiles

"It Happened One Fight brings all the banter and sizzle (and hijinks!) of the best Golden Age movies to the page. Lenker’s perfectly matched hero and heroine are reminiscent of the most iconic cinematic pairings, and watching them spar their way to a happily ever after is pure fun from start to finish.” 

— Martha Waters, author of To Have and to Hoax

"In It Happened One Fight, Maureen Lee Lenker takes us on a romantic old Hollywood romp with a totally modern twist. Reading this story feels like going back in time and getting a VIP ticket to hang out with the who’s who of Hollywood’s golden age. What a fun ride!”

— Kwana Jackson, USA Today Bestselling author of Real Men Knit

"Maureen Lee Lenker's adult fiction debut is a charming time machine into the glitter, glam, and drama of old Hollywood! This delightful love story is a funny, swoony, and delightful dive into the choices we make and the choices that ultimately make us happy. Don't miss this one!"

 — Denise Williams, author of The Fastest Way to Fall

It Happened One Fight is an instant classic. A rare blend of banter, touching characters, and the kind of chemistry that lights up the silver screen. This book will win you over and steal your heart.”

— Adriana Anders, award-winning author of Whiteout

"It Happened One Fight is a dazzling tribute to old Hollywood glamor, intrigue, and passionate emotion. Lenker’s debut is perfect for fans of Taylor Jenkins Reid and the classic romance pictures of the early days of cinema."

— Scarlett Peckham, author of The Duke I Tempted

"A fresh voice and a fresh time period and setting in historical romance. Maureen Lee Lenker’s narrative voice sparkles with all the glitz and glamor of the Golden Age of Hollywood. This enemies to lovers romp, reminiscent of a 1930s screwball comedy, unfolds in a surprisingly tender tale of vulnerability, facing one’s past, and ultimately living life—and falling in love—on your own terms."

— Alexis Daria, bestselling author of You Had Me at Hola

Maureen Lee Lenker's It Happened One Fight combines sparkling dialogue, delicious humor, and swoon-worthy characters into a must-read for romance fans. Prepare to be swept off your feet...Hollywood golden-age style."

— Janna MacGregor, author of The Cavensham Heiresses series

"Old Hollywood meets modern romance and it's a perfect pairing!"

— Abby Jimenez, New York Times bestselling author of Part of Your World

"Madcap and delightful, It Happened One Fight a rip-roaring good time! Lenker skillfully twists old Hollywood, rom-coms, and celebrity romances to a hilarious new level, giving us the historical romance we've all been waiting for." 

— Joanna Shupe, author of The Duke Gets Even

"An absolutely charming debut! It Happened One Fight sparkles with witty banter, classic Hollywood glamour, and a delectably swoony adversaries-to-lovers romance!"

-Priscilla Oliveras, USA Today bestselling author of West Side Love Story

"It Happened One Fight is an effervescent gem of a romance: sparkling with wit, dripping with Old Hollywood glamour, and crackling with enemies-to-lovers chemistry. Dash and Davis jump right off the page with their cleverness, complexity, and deeply human choices, and their silver screen-worthy swoons will have you pining for more of Lenker’s bright, verve-filled words!"

— Sierra Simone, USA Today bestselling author

“And the Oscar goes to…Maureen Lee Lenker, for this irresistible debut that serves up Classic Hollywood with humor, heat, and lots of heart. As much fun as a night at the movies!”

— Susanna Kearsley, New York Times bestselling author of The Winter Sea

"A delightful and deceptively deep ode to Old Hollywood, both its love stories and the stars at the heart of them. The charm of the 1930s is deftly rendered, but so too is the contemporary resonance. Especially around the issue of owning who you really are and fighting for what you want, regardless of the fallout. Which is no longer solely the domain of studio contract-players and silver screen matinee idols, but everyday people living in the public eye of social media. Dash and Davis forever!" 

— Julia Whelan, author of Thank You For Listening

"The delicious tension crackles off the page! A delight of a debut that bubbles with Old Hollywood humor and charm. Joan is the sexy, sophisticated heroine most of us wish we could be and Dash is just the rogue to upend her well ordered life. I couldn't get enough of watching them clash, eagerly waiting for the moment Joan will finally realize she may have misjudged the handsome devil.  "

— Jenny Nordbak, author of The Scarlett Letters and His Leading Lady

"Maureen Lee Lenker’s debut, It Happened One Fight deftly sweeps us into the Golden Era of Hollywood with a couple that epitomizes that delicious 'will they or won’t they' dance of the classic rom-com. Her canny explorations on the crushing pressures of fame and the double-standards for women in the film industry make for a layered and emotionally charged romance. A funny, sexy debut that is as smart as it is romantic."

— Adriana Herrera, USA Today Bestselling author of A Caribbean Heiress in Paris

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