Author Name & Publisher: Liz McMullen (Sapphire Books Publishing)
Publication Date & Length: July 1, 2016 – 234 pgs
Desiree Chevalier is determined to control her own destiny, and that includes shaking her mother’s iron grip on her life. Rosalie Chevalier is not going down without a fight. She’s a corporate raider after all and it just wouldn’t do to have a wayward daughter. When Desiree steps away from the Chevalier fortune to put herself through Mount Holyoke College, Rosalie decides to show up on her doorstep. Although her mother digs in, Desiree refuses to bend.
Rowan Knight is working just as hard as Desiree to put herself through school. She is intrigued by Desiree but also wary of the icy reception she receives each time they meet. Rosalie’s persistent interference in Desiree’s life intensifies the tension between Desiree and Rowan. Will they be able to move past the obstacles in their path, or will their love remain unspoken?
Actually I thoroughly enjoyed reading this beautifully written romance. Unlike many romance novel this novel was truly romantic. Almost like old fashioned “courting” brought up to date and at relevant times pleasantly sentimental .
I was immediately drawn to Rowans personality and as they were introduced her raucous loving family.On the other hand Desiree’s personality grew on you the more you learned about her.
I though the way the women’s romance unfolded slowly, warily and with such carefully constructed explanations were a joy to follow.
It was admirable to read about such honourable characters and the use of characters from international background laudable.
My only criticism would be the alacrity in the change of one of the characters mothers, though the explanation given was a pleasant unexpected surprise.
An enchanting tale that leaves the reader sated and content. I will certainly be looking for further works by this engrossing author.
I’m hesitant to rate this book. In some ways, I liked the book so much more – I liked the characters, I liked the setting, I liked the relationships in the book. Based on that much, I may have rated the book higher. Based on other things, I would have rated the book lower. I felt like there were a couple of things I would have liked done differently. First, after that first chapter, which I actually will address again later, the story starts at the college where our two mains are attending. My problem is that in the first couple of chapters, I got a LOT of names, and relationships that I struggled to keep straight in my head. And that tiny bit of stress turned out to not matter as much as I thought it would; most of the names that were introduced weren’t as integral to the story as their initial mention would imply, which made me wonder why they all had to be introduced one right after the other in the first place. Next, there were breaks in the narrative where we jumped from one thing to another with a kind of disconnect, or a break in the logic chain between events. This may simply be the fact that I don’t click with McMullen’s style of writing or follow her logic. That seems to me to be a bit of a copout, because I really liked the story that I read. What seems to me to have happened is that McMullen knew the story, meaning she knew what everyone was feeling, and how they reacted to each other, and what happened to make each react the way that they did, but sometimes she forgot to tell us everything that happened. My reaction to this was mild confusion in certain scenes where I wondered if I’d missed something. If I’d been reading the story as a beta, I would have marked those places and asked about them, but it looked as if there were quite of few people who’d read this for her, so I wonder if it was just me, and something not clicking between me and the story. I don’t know for sure. Last, we come back to Chapter One. First, I know some people don’t like prologues, but something that happened five years prior to the few weeks/months when the story occurred seems like a prologue to me. But more importantly, I’m not sure why the scene was included, especially in this way. Rowan was deeply impacted by this event, and even has flashbacks and an almost catatonic reaction to a similar occurrence near the end of the book, so I understand why what happened was important. But nothing that happened in the details of that chapter was integral to the story enough to make it a whole chapter. Perhaps it would have been better if it were integrated within the story; using the actual accident scene during the flashback that occurred during Desiree’s first ride with Rowan, and the subsequent hospital scene during Rowan’s mother’s attempt to bring Rowan back to a conscious awareness of her surroundings. Having it separated so much made it feel a little like an add-on, especially because so much of the story was more about Desiree than Rowan. And that’s what this book felt like, the story of how Desiree matured more than how Rowan recovered. Desiree’s struggle against her mother’s overpowering personality, her fight to stay focused on her schooling, and her eventual realization that some things in life are just as important, if not more, as success that led her to open her heart to the possibilities that Rowan offered. That was an excellent story.
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I’ve had a passion for history and world religions since I was a little girl looking up at my Dad as he told me stories. I fed my addiction to politics, history, mythology, and religion while at Mount Holyoke College and during my junior year abroad at Trinity College in Dublin. I spent six weeks as a turtle (aka backpacking) around Europe, visiting all the places I had been reading about. Although my title as the Traveling Where’s Waldo of the family has been retired, my wanderlust lives on in my writing.
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