I fell in love with TWO ACROSS twenty seconds into the first page, and I swear—with my right hand raised and my left on a Jane Austen novel—that with this book you'll meet your new favorite author. His warmth and wit remind me of Laurie Colwin and the other best practitioners of smart romantic comedy. I wish I'd written this wonderful novel. Well, first I'd have to be as good as Jeff Bartsch.”
—Elinor Lipman, author of The View from Penthouse B and The Inn at Lake Devine
Smart and sprightly . . . readers will root for Vera and Stanley, who are uncommonly agreeable characters. . . . Reader, can you spell romantic comedy? Clearly, Bartsch can and does to wonderfully good effect.
Two crossword puzzle lovers come together and fall apart in this smart, romantic debut. . . . Bartsch’s delightful novel creates a lovely marriage between words and romance.
A debut novel
A crossword creator and con man eludes the woman who loves him, until he realizes his error. . . . Stanley is a character Wes Anderson would love. . . . [TWO ACROSS] moves at a nice clip, aided by the regular appearance of the cleverly coded puzzles Stanley and Vera plant for each other in various newspapers. Crossword enthusiasts will appreciate the many insider winks, but everyone will be eager to solve the book's biggest puzzle: whether Stanley and Vera will succeed in their search for happiness."
―The New York Times Book Review
What a quirky, witty, wonderful read. I ignored my family for the better part of a beach vacation because I couldn't bear to put down this gem of a book. Jeff Bartsch is an immensely talented writer, and I plan to be first in line to buy whatever it is he publishes next.
—Cristina Alger, author of The Darlings