As I mentioned in my previous post, my daughter bought me this paperback for mother’s day this past year. It was prominently displayed at Target, and she saw that it was in the romance section. Also as I mentioned before, it turns out that the book is actually two books in one, both written in the 1980s.
Interestingly, this story was timeless enough there were only a few give-aways to the decade. Lack of cell phones/smart phones has definitely had a huge impact on the stories.
This one was better than the first of the two novels. It was an enjoyable afternoon read as long as I didn’t think too much. Certain plot holes were rather obvious after I put the book down, particularly relating to the custody battle over the heroine’s brother’s son.
Other than that, there was some decent chemistry with the characters. The heroine was far more fleshed out than the hero, and as such, I liked her a lot better. The steamy scenes were okay, but they aren’t the type I will reread to help my own writing.
The worst part was the sheer amount of head-hopping. Any character you come across you have the chance of seeing the story through their eyes. Even small incidental ones. This is a lot of head-hopping. In older, more established romance writers, you expected to see the scene through both the hero and heroine’s perspective. This was way beyond that.
All in, I don’t regret reading it, but I won’t read it again.
It did teach me a few things.
First, an external plot is really helpful. Having so much internal, “I am getting over my ex” going on, not augmented by something more, can make it difficult to relate to a character. It can also make it difficult to believe they have gotten over their ex.
Second, my favorite character in this was not the the usual serious and duty-driven one. All of the character building that went into the heroine who was driven more by emotion and living for the moment actually made me like her better. Unusual, but some key character driven elements, such as her compassion for her nephew, drew me to her.
Reminds me how important character development is, and it’s something Nora Roberts does very well in all of her work.