Title: Hurricane Season
Author Name & Publisher: B. J. Phillips (Desert Palm Press)
Publication Date & Length: June 5, 2016 – 201 Pages
Shawn Richards (aka S.K. Richardson) is a romance author. She’s had her heart broken badly again and is done with love. Ditching San Francisco, she moves back home to Southwest Florida to get her feet back under her and finish her latest novel.
Carrie Alexander is a huge S.K. Richardson fan, but has no idea what she looks like. She does, however, like the looks of the new neighbor down the street, Shawn Richards. Drawn to each other as friends, Shawn still tries to keep some distance in spite of what she’s beginning to feel for Carrie. Carrie isn’t the kind of woman you just have a fun night with and then move on. Carrie’s the kind you fall in love with and make love to, and live happily ever after with—but she just can’t let herself trust her heart yet. After all, the last time she fell for one of her fans, it ended badly. Carrie is looking for ‘happy ever after’ just like in all those romance novels she reads. Shawn could be the one, or maybe Carrie’s fooling herself and there’s really no such thing as all that romantic stuff in Shawn’s books. Shawn is afraid she can’t deliver on that ‘happy ever after’ she knows Carrie wants—and she wants, too, truth be told. Destiny might have given them a push when Carrie tripped at the local grocery store and literally fell into Shawn’s arms. But fear could cost Shawn the woman of her dreams.
This is a pretty good debut novel. Shawn and Carrie meet by accident and are drawn together by attraction and desire. The problem? Shawn’s last relationship was a trainwreck and she’s still trying to recover from it. It makes her wary and closed off to taking a chance on the possibilities she senses she’d have with Carrie. And that’s a lot of the plot, and possibly the problem as well. Carrie does a lot of waiting around for Shawn to get her stuff together, and gives her more than one second chance. That’s a lot of waiting for someone she isn’t sure will ever take the chance to be with her, and truthfully, as nice as Carrie seems, she also seems like a doormat because she’s so passive about letting Shawn make all the moves. And it doesn’t help that anytime Shawn does make a move, 30 seconds later she runs away, then hides for the next week. I’d say on paper, that doesn’t necessarily sound like a good story, but I actually enjoyed following along as the two try to find their way to each other. Besides occasionally wanting to smack each upside the head to make them wake up, the characters are basically likable, and they do make you root for a happy resolution. I liked hearing about all the stuff they did to weather the hurricane at the end, however it seems to me there was a lot of hype about the storm but not much happened, unless you count the way they spent their time waiting. It seemed like a buildup of tension about the storm, but the storm didn’t actually do much. Anyway, the book is sweet and romantic, and an enjoyable way to spend some time.
BJ Phillips writes romance novels set in her home state of Florida. She grew up in the South, spending most of her growing up years in Florida, barefoot or in flip flops. She lives with her partner and their two four-legged girls, in central Florida in an honest to goodness resort (it says so on the sign out front). When not writing or reading, she enjoys watching baseball, sitting on their front porch chatting with neighbors and friends, people watching and shopping at flea markets, and watching way too many mysteries and police shows.