Elizabeth Palmer charms with a short story about two people being drawn together by the best mistake either of them ever made.
Best Moment: The teasing moments of camaraderie between siblings. Jake and Jamie clearly share a well-developed bond in the writer’s imagination and it comes off enjoyably on the page.
Worst Moment: I can’t decide whether the worst moment is when Jake starts going on and on about Eastern parenting techniques (through various moments), or when Violet is described as wearing white spandex for a photo shoot with Jake and her daughter.
Synopsis: Violet Gallagher is an anchorwoman who is known for her devotion to her career and the almighty schedule. Jake Macintyre is a good-looking, world-traveling photojournalist who happens to catch Violet’s eye at a going away party for Violet to celebrate her promotion. What Violet doesn’t know is that Jake has been mesmerized by her for quite some time and takes the chance, and Violet’s momentary lapse of spontaneous loneliness, to get closer to her. What she doesn’t know is who Jake actually is and, the next day, she says goodbye to her seeming Prince Charming as he heads off for a year of traveling and photos. Only…Jake leaves her with a little something special and when he comes back a year later…Violet is frantic to protect her daughter and her heart from the man who spent his year away thinking about the woman and the night that connects them all together.
The Good: Jake is a fun character. So is Violet (despite all of her uptight weirdness). Anyone who knows me knows that I am ALWAYS down for a good “Whoopsie-We-Have-A-Baby” Romance (trust me JW has already started me on therapy to discover the root of my weirdness), and this is that. It is definitely a story about opposites attract and vastly unexpected circumstances bringing together star-crossed lovers. Daisy comes off as a cute baby with adorable mannerisms and antics which is fairly rare. Once the baby is born, they usually become pretty cliché in most novels.
The Bad: Jake is a well-traveled soul who is just coming back to the US and the Western world after a year of living abroad in Eastern cultures…and he is incredibly annoying. Now Jake himself is actually an appealing character and a lot of what he’s saying is true, too…however…kill me. Jake’s inner monologue is a diatribe about the weirdness of Western practices. He’s not wrong, but he is annoying in the context of the novel!!!
Another slightly off-putting aspect of the book is the Carrie the Babysitter/Abused woman side-line. Palmer manages to make it work somehow, but it spins into this very bizarre personal development/career moment for Violet that leaves an off-taste in the reader’s mouth.
The Ugly: The cover, once again, kills the soul.
We’ve all been there. We’re wandering through a bookstore, or maybe aimlessly searching suggestions, looking at random lists on Amazon.com for something to read. Happily, we traipse through booktopias convinced that we’re going to find something wonderful to read and then… We are greeted with the cover.
Before I begin, I feel I must point out one very simple fact:
Most authors get absolutely no input in their covers, or, if they do, it’s mostly a kind of courtesy. Publishers rule. Authors weep and hope for reprints.
Challenge accepted. Unleashing Mockery…
Forgive the cover artists, for they know not what they do.
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