Get into Bed with Julia London (Author Interview)

one mad nightKeira: One of the things I liked best about your rivals romance One Mad Night was that the hero and heroine played fair and it was still fun! Was fair play important to you and why was it important to the romance?

Julia London: To a point, yes.  The novella is short, so if the hero did something unfair (and it would be the hero, right?), there is not really enough time to redeem him.  And honestly, I think rivals can play fair.  It’s healthy competition that makes for healthy relationship.  I sound like a psychologist.

Keira: What made you decide they were competing over a car ad?

Julia: I thought that sort of ad would be a good and natural tension, because car ads seem to slanted toward men or women.  I noticed minivan ads are all about mom and the kids, and then the luxury cars are all about hip, handsome men. Figures!

Keira: What is your favorite part about snowed-in / isolated / desert / intimate (this subgenre goes by a lot of names!) romances?

Julia: That no one can escape.  The characters have to deal.  No one can run away and talk to friends or think, or pull any of that.  They are stuck.  Delicious!

Keira: What do you love best about writing historical/contemporary romances? 

Julia: Well, I love to read good love stories.  I love to watch them on the big screen.  So I guess I am naturally drawn to them.  I love establishing the male and female leads and their first real notice of each other.  It’s always fun to see where it will go after that.

Keira: Your characters always have such lovely chemistry with each other. What to you makes two characters rub along and create sparks?

Julia: Thank you!  That’s a wonderful compliment.  In high school, we did this play about a couple on a train.  I can’t remember the name of it, but what I remember is that it was my first conscious comprehension of the emotional differences between men and women.  Men want everything to be uncomplicated and unemotional, and women are incapable of leaving everything black and white.  It’s fun to push and pull those two dynamics.

Keira: How do you define love? How do you recognize your true love? What makes it last in the long run and not fizzle out?

Julia: In books or in real life?  Mutual respect and admiration is love.  What makes it last in the long run is appreciation and listening.  I think men and women can put up with a lot if they feel they are heard and appreciated by the ones they love.

Keira: What makes a steamy and sexy sex scene?

Julia: For me, the anticipation and sexual tension is steamier than the actual sex scene.  It’s a problem for me as a writer.  Some readers really like graphic sex.  I really like the build up to the actual depiction.  I have to straddle those and find a happy medium.

Keira: If not for writing, what would be your dream job? “Big business” job?

Julia: Writing is my dream job!  I’ve had the big business jobs before.  I would love to learn how to write screen plays, but there is only so much time, you know?

Keira: What is the hardest part and the most fun part of writing?

Julia: The hardest part of writing is actually writing.  I want each book to be better than the last, so I keep raising the bar for myself.  Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t.  But I have to challenge myself to try new things and execute them well.  The most fun part of writing is meeting fans.  I work alone and I don’t know how my books may or may not speak to a reader.  So when I meet them in person and they are so complimentary and sometimes even moved my meeting me, it makes every moment spent alone with a stinky dog, tossing out everything I wrote the day before and trying again very much worth it!

Keira: What are you working on for us next?

Julia: I have the next two books in my historical Cabot Sisters series (The Devil Takes a Bride and The Scoundrel and the Debutante) coming out in late January and late April, respectively.  The Perfect Homecoming, the third book in my contemporary Pine River series, is coming out in February.  I am currently writing a book about rich summer people and the inevitable conflicts with the year round residents at a lake resort.  I just started it, but you know some worlds are going to collide!

One Mad Night Anthology
By Julia London

Two Romantic Adventures…One Mad Night

Two delightful contemporary romance novellas in one book from New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Julia London.

One winter’s night a blizzard sweeps across the country, demonstrating that fate can change the course of lives in an instant…and fate has got a sense of humor.

One Mad Night

Chelsea Crawford and Ian Rafferty are high profile ad execs in cutthroat competition for a client. When a major winter storm puts New York City on lockdown, the two rivals have to make it through the night together—oh, the many ways in which opposites attract…

The Bridesmaid – Bonus Novella

RITA Award Nominee for Best Romance Novella of 2013

Kate Preston has just moved to New York. Joe Firretti is contemplating a move to Seattle. When the weather wreaks havoc with transportation systems, Kate and Joe meet as they are both trying to rent the last car available… As Kate races to make her best friend’s wedding, and Joe races to a life-altering job interview, it looks like together is the only way they’ll make it at all.

Praise for Julia London:

“London knows how to keep pages turning…winningly fresh and funny.” —Publishers Weekly, on RITA Award nominee The Bridesmaid

Buy: One Mad Night

About the Author

Julia London is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of more than thirty novels, including the Homecoming Ranch contemporary series, the Secrets of Hadley Green historical romance series, and numerous other works. She is a four-time finalist for the prestigious RITA Award for excellence in romantic fiction, and RT Bookclub award recipient for Best Historical Romance.  She lives in Austin, Texas.

Connect with Julia London:

www.julialondon.com  | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

Excerpt from One Mad Night by Julia London

It took a moment for Chelsea to notice him, which gave Ian a moment to admire her. He was going to crush her tomorrow, but that didn’t stop him from appreciating a figure that guys like him dreamed about. Chelsea was wearing a skirt today. It hit about mid-thigh and was tight enough to show off all her curves. She looked a bit taller today too. He glanced at her feet and noticed the shoes. Chelsea was walking on stilts, and her legs, good God, her legs. She was smoking hot in that dress and those shoes.

“Hey!” she said sharply, her voice full of accusation.

Ian’s head snapped up. “Hey,” he said con-genially. “Practicing your pitch?” He settled one hip onto the conference table.

“Do you mind?” She gestured to the door in a be-­off-­with-­you way.

“If you want, I could listen and give you some feedback.”

Chelsea’s mouth dropped open. And then her green eyes narrowed into little slits. “You have got to be the most arrogant man I’ve ever met.”

Ian smiled and shrugged.

“You can go, Ian,” she said, marching around the conference table to usher him out. “I think I’ve got it.”

“Suit yourself.”

“I will.”

“So hostile,” he said with a wink as he stood up. “I’m just trying to help. It never hurts for someone to hear the pitch, right? You’ve had someone listen to you go through it, right?”

“Yes, I’ve had—­Hey, hey,” she said, poking him in the chest. “Are you trying to play me?” she demanded. “Because it won’t work. I’m not some junior account person, you know. You can’t intimidate me.”

“Well, obviously,” Ian said and poked her back. “You wouldn’t be pitching at all if you were a junior account person. I know I can’t intimidate you. It wasn’t a declaration of war, you know; it was an offer to help.”

“It wasn’t a let-­me-­help, best-­friends-­forever offer, either. I’m not playing games with you. This account means a lot to me—­”

“Me too.”

“Oh yeah?” she said, shifting closer. “Well, don’t get too attached to the idea. I’ve got seniority, you know.”

“So why are you so afraid to show me what you’ve got?”

“Because it’s none of your business.”

“On the eve of the championship, it’s okay to go out and shoot some hoops with your competitor. It’s not going to affect tomorrow’s big game. It’s not like I can go out and change weeks of work overnight if I see you’ve got something better.”

She laughed. “Good try, Rafferty, but I think maybe the reason you want to see my pitch is because you’re worried about the strength of your pitch. Is it a little rough? Maybe I should listen to you.” She winked, and her green eyes shone with pleasure at her comeback.

“I’m definitely not worried about my pitch.”

“No? Seems to me if you’re presenting three,” she said, holding up three fingers and wiggling them at him, “then you must be uncertain which one is the winner.” Her smile broadened into sheer triumph, as if she thought she’d really zinged him.

She hadn’t zinged him, but Ian did wonder how she knew what he had…Zach. Of course. That rat bastard. “Have you been talking to Zimmerman?” he asked accusingly.

She shrugged and studied her manicure. “Maybe. Does it matter? I thought we were doing the let’s-­help-­each-­other thing. But if we’re not, would you mind toddling off? I have a lot of work I need to do before tomorrow. I plan to hit the ground running with this account on Monday.”

She was amazingly and annoyingly confident. Ian was generally a confident guy, but she was making him a teensy bit nervous. “You really think you’re going to get this, don’t you?”

“I don’t think, I know,” she said, looking up.

He tilted his head to one side to study her. “Isn’t it obvious to you why they brought me in?”

“I don’t know—­I haven’t given it the slightest bit of thought.” She lifted her chin, and Ian realized she lied about as well as she engaged in verbal volleyball. “I’ve been promised that this account is as good as mine. Didn’t they tell you that when they brought you in?”

A bit more of Ian’s confidence leaked out of him. He’d been in New York advertising long enough to know that the industry was full of snakes. He wouldn’t put it past anyone to feed him a bunch of half-­baked promises to get him to commit. “Who told you?”

She grinned. “None of your beeswax.”

“Come on, tell me—­” His phone rang, distracting him momentarily. He fished it out of his pocket and noticed the number was the Grabber-­Paulson main number. That was weird. “Listen, I’ll just say this,” he said, clicking off the phone. “Don’t be so sure of things. People say things they don’t mean, especially in this industry.” He started for the door.

“Uh-­huh, I know. And I would offer you the same advice, Mr. Rafferty,” she said in a singsong voice, and she flashed a dazzling smile, full of straight white teeth.

“Cocky too. I like that about you,” he said. “I’ll keep it in mind when I make partner.” He winked at her, smiled as if he was completely unbothered, and went out of the conference room.

Buy: One Mad Night

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Review: When the Rogue Returns (The Duke’s Men, Book 2) by Sabrina Jeffries

When the Rogue ReturnsHero: Victor Cale just recently learned of his wife’s whereabouts after she abandoned him and said their marriage was a mistake. She left him to face the consequences of the crime she and her family colluded to and executed so effortlessly under his nose. He plans to confront her and seek justice for all the injuries they and she inflicted on him through their perjury. His broken heart is at the top of that list.

Heroine: Isa Cale, hiding under an assumed name, Sofe Franke, is angry and frightened when her husband shows up in Edinburgh ten years after he deserted her. Why is he there? Why now? What does he want? Does he know of their child? Does he want to trick her or force her into illegal activities again? Well, he’s about to find out that Isa is not the timid little mouse he married. She’s got teeth and she’s willing to do what it takes to protect her daughter.

Review: It’s clear from the beginning that the hero and heroine are laboring under a big misunderstanding. A decade spent apart and a series of lies has torn their fledging marriage into two and two hearts are grieving for the loss of a love they both thought was true. Their double-speak when they first meet again is quite entertaining. Victor’s reaction to Isa’s feelings, about the pet name he gave her, is particularly heart-wrenching. He did not realize he’d been so misunderstood! He’s quick to come up with an alternative. Both are unique to the heroine and I love that. What great about this novel is that Sabrina Jeffries knits both hearts, both characters, slowly back together. Trust is a big issue for them both and it’s a delight to see them work through the fabrications and make amends for back judgments in the past. It’s also nice to know that even while they trust, they did both still have doubts and had to fight to overcome them time and again. It made for a realistic read. I also enjoyed that the story took place outside of the usual London setting. Not a book to be missed!

Rating: ★★★★½

Buy: When the Rogue Returns (The Duke’s Men)

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Review: His Most Exquisite Conquest by Emma Darcy

His Most Exquisite Conquest by Emma DarcyReviewed by Sandra Scholes

Synopsis: Lucy Flippance has gone through life with a bad opinion of men. Whenever she has dated them in the past, they have started out as princes, with charm and handsome looks, then several months into the relationship, their love had waned and he had turned into a frog. It didn’t help that Lucy’s mother had gone through hell with her husband when he had got her pregnant, then left her when it came to light she had cancer. That made her adamant that she would be very cautious around men, no matter how promising or handsome they were.

Michael Finn is a man used to getting what he wants in the boardroom and out of it. Where women are concerned, he can have his pick and choose of them. He, like Lucy has split up from his ex girlfriend, Fiona Redman who was into female power games and was intent to rule his head, heart – and possibly his entire life if he let her. He said he would never let another woman do that to him after he had split up with her. Not when he had made Finn’s Franchises a top business when he took over from his late father. Michael seeks to enjoy the romance of any female encounter, but sooner or late, he tires of the woman no matter the beauty, the abilities as he always finds a floor in their make-up and it puts him off them for life.

Good bits:

  • Lucy trying to keep her secret hidden.
  • Harry’s relationship with her sister.
  • Michael in two minds as to continue his relationship with Lucy when one of her conquests dishes the dirt on her to him.

Bad bits:

  • Michael’s cheesy chat up-lines about what she was doing as a cemetery admin when she could be a model.
  • Michael’s insistence at not using a condom on their first night together – what a cad!

Review: The chemistry is there between the two of them, but Lucy doesn’t want him to turn from prince to frog, while Michael hopes that his interest in her will last the distance. Her only problem is her awful secret as it’s one that could put him off her if he ever discovers it. Lucy brings out the good in him, the needy part also, and he sometimes feels uncomfortable about a recent revelation that happened when they were in a crowded restaurant. He wants to enjoy his time with her, but at the same time he hopes she could be the one woman he has been looking for all his life. Harry and Michael are two brothers, the Finns while Lucy and Ellie are sisters and are both dating each other, making things more complicated than they should be.

Summary: The story is enjoyable, and the characters feel right for the situations they are all put in. If it’s raining outside, pick this book up, it won’t disappoint you – you won’t want to put it down!

Rating: ★★★★½

Buy: His Most Exquisite Conquest (The Legendary Finn Brothers)

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Review: Destiny of the Wolf by Terry Spear

bookreview

Terry Spear weaves paranormal, suspense, and romance together in one non-stop rollercoaster of passion and adventure. I was pleasantly surprised to find myself enjoying a protagonist werewolf plot (I’m more inclined to favor vampires) and a mystery thriller plotline (again not something I usually go for). I love this novel’s front cover (hmm sexy). Don’t you? This book reminds me a bit of Only With Your Love by Lisa Kleypas. Overall, there were many pieces that I enjoyed in this book and many pieces that I did not. Of course the story wouldn’t be the same story without the parts that I like least… and all the parts I’m not in favor of can be contributed to the dead sister Larissa.

Larissa is dead. How did she get there? Her living triplet Lelandi is in Silver Town to find out. Her discoveries show just how much of a royal mess Larissa made of her life. One of them (and this is what gets me) was to take Darien as her mate. Darien has a special gift to find his true soul mate through dreams. Larissa claims to be the one he dreams about while knowing the real woman of his dreams is her sister Lelandi. Talk about some sisterly backstabbing!

When Lelandi comes to town to find the truth, her very presence upsets and stirs Darien. He’s attracted to her as he never was for Larissa. He thought the dream mating must have reflected a truer connection than the physical one, which is why he always felt sort of bereft after making love to Larissa. After discovering who Lelandi is and what she really means to him, Darien vows to move heaven and earth to claim Lelandi as his mate.

Throughout the developing passion, Darien and Lelandi unravel the mystery surrounding Larissa’s last months in an effort to find her murderer. Lelandi soon becomes a target herself, but that doesn’t deter her from seeking justice. The clues will reveal a most surprising culprit.

Rating: ★★★½☆

Book is categorized as interracial because of the pairing of two different breeds of werewolf… red and gray.

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First Love – A Love for Life?

by Margaret James, guest blogger and author of The Silver Locket and The Golden Chain

Thank you for inviting me to be a guest blogger on Love Romance Passion. I’m delighted to be here.

What’s great about writing romance is that there’s so much scope for trying out something new. Over the years, I’ve written sweet, written sensual, written drama, written comedy. One day I’ll be sitting at my keyboard sobbing my heart out as I write a scene of almost operative tragedy. But another day I’ll be laughing as I put my lovers into a totally screwball situation, and I’ll hope my reader will end up laughing, too.

I’m sure everyone remembers falling in love for the very first time. It’s like being hit by a freight train, isn’t it? But it’s also feeling so light and so happy that if you jumped off a mountain top you’re almost certain you could fly. I’ve wanted to write about first love for a long time, and in The Golden Chain I got my chance.

The Golden Chain is the second story in a trilogy of novels about three British families and three pairs of lovers living through World War 1, the Depression of the 1930s, and finally World War 2. The first novel is The Silver Locket, a dramatic and often hard-hitting wartime romance in which landowner’s daughter Rose Courtenay falls for local bad boy Alex Denham, who also happens to be married. Rose’s parents expect her to marry a different, much more suitable man. So Rose and Alex find their romantic journey is a rocky ride. But, since it’s wartime and there’s a very real possibility every stolen kiss might be their last, it’s also an exciting ride to happy-ever-after land.

The Golden Chain is the story of aspiring actress, singer and dancer Daisy Denham, Rose’s and Alex’s adopted daughter. It’s about falling in love for the very first time, and hoping this love will last. In some ways, it’s a 1930s take on the Romeo and Juliet story. Like Romeo and Juliet, Daisy and wannabe actor Ewan Fraser are attractive, emotional, idealistic teenagers and, although nobody ends up dead in the family tomb, their families aren’t at all pleased when Daisy and Ewan fall in love.

Do Ewan and Daisy care what their parents say? Of course they don’t, and Ewan’s gift of a golden chain seals the deal. They join a touring theatrical company and, for a while, everything goes well. But then an older, more sophisticated man joins the company, bewitches Daisy, and she breaks Ewan’s heart. This is a feel-good romance, so there’s going to be a happy ending. But it won’t be before both Ewan and Daisy have grown up a lot, suffered a few setbacks, and worked out what they really want out of life.

Most of my romantic heroes have been tall, dark and handsome, they’ve often led difficult lives, they frequently need healing, and they usually spell trouble for my heroines. Ewan is different – he’s tall and handsome sure enough, but instead of being dark he has copper-red hair and fantastic emerald eyes. At the start of the novel he’s not in need of healing because he’s not old enough for life to have hurt him. He’s clever and ambitious, but he’s also too trusting, and that’s his downfall.

If Daisy hadn’t broken his heart, I’m sure some other girl would have done it. But maybe having your heart broken is part of growing up? If you’ve never known heartbreak, perhaps you’ve never really lived?

Margaret James is a novelist, journalist working for the UK’s Writing Magazine, and she teaches creative writing for the London School of Journalism. She’s written a dozen published romantic novels and hopes to write many more. She’s on Facebook and Twitter – www.twitter.com/majanovelist. She has a blog at www.margaretjamesblog.blogspot.com and a website at www.margaretjames.com.

The The Silver Locket and The Golden Chain are published by Choc Lit.

Links to books:

GIVEAWAY: I have 4 ebook copies of Margaret James’ Golden Chain. Open to all readers. Leave a comment to enter. Winner can pick format of their choice. Last Day to Enter: April 16, 2011.

You’re so Vain, You Think this Romance is About You, Don’t You?

holdinghands

Carly Simon was onto something when she claimed, “you’re so vain.”

What is romance, after all, but being (seemingly) attended to as you secretly think you deserve? ~Michael Sims reported by Bittergrace

That was one of the most interesting things I heard about romance in a long while. It made me think. Are our emotions wrapped up in vanity? Well, are they?

The more I thought about it the more I was sure this statement was correct. I came away agreeing that attentiveness and falling in love go hand in hand.

You wouldn’t dream about ignoring someone you were interested in romantically or sexually. We obsess and we worry over the details. Was that smile a friendly one or a “I’m interested” one? Did he/she notice that huge blunder we just made? And so on.

We are flattered by attentions of others whether desired or not. I think this is because we all want to be admired and noticed.

Romance novels allow readers to feel that thrill of attention, admiration, and chase over and over again. What’s better than falling in love? Other than chocolate which is a given.

The pursuit of love that is all consuming is so attractive because it’s so consuming. We crave to be consumed as much as we want to consume. To be wrapped up in our own little worlds; it’s thrilling and terrifying and tremendously tantalizing.

When the attention fades, so does the love. Rekindle both and you’re right there at the height of passion all over again.

What do you think? Do you dis/agree?

Photo Credits: John Everett — Millais

Review: Seduction by Amanda Quick

bookreview

This lovely little book was a quick and delightful read. I was sad to finish it because it meant that I would have to let the leads Julian Ravenwood and Sophy Dorring go their own way. The novel starts out with Julian accepting Sophy’s refusal to marry him. The word was passed down to him through her grandfather and Julian is stunned. Little Sophy could not hope to make a better match and his offer was generous to the extreme. Determined to gain an audience with Sophy Julian contrives of a way to do so. He tracks her down and demands to know her requirements to marry him. She spouts of a few outrageous ideas and he agrees and adds a few of his own turning the tables and leaving Sophy stunned.

Julian is an earl and all that implies. He’s the epitome of the controlling domineering alpha male. He’s also a widower; his late wife drowned. Not that this was a hardship, there was something wrong with the woman. Elizabeth, the dead wife, was for the lack of a better word a nymphomaniac. She loved to cuckold Julian, especially since she didn’t want to marry him in the first place. She took what was warm and good inside Julian and killed it. After the second duel to defend her honor, Julian came to the realization that his wife was not virtuous and didn’t have any honor. He labeled all women susceptible to the madness and vowed never to risk his fool neck for a woman again, but he needs a wife to supply him an heir and Sophy as far as he’s concerned is as different from Elizabeth as night and day.

Sophy is a typical unusual female for her times, but in slightly new way. She’s not put together and far from sophisticated. Pieces of her clothing and accessories like ribbons and feathers are always askew. She loves to read (mostly herbals and a treatise on women’s rights). She doesn’t trust seduction or lust without love. The reason Sophy doesn’t trust a man’s passion is because her sister, Amelia, was seduced and killed by one man’s passion. Sophy thinks sex without love is the epitome of masculine ruthlessness. She has the ring of the man who seduced Amelia and plans to find him and ruin him.

When Julian corner’s her for her list of demands she begs of him three things. One, that she not be forced into the childbed right away or more accurately forced into the marriage bed. Julian promises her three months of leeway. This is acceptable to her because she’s loved Julian since she was 18 not that the fool would notice, panting after Elizabeth as he was. She hopes to make him love her in the time they are not sharing a bed. Two, she wants to control her inheritance. Julian counters that his quarterly allowance for her exceeds the money her grandfather will leave her, but she insists. Three, she wants no interference from him on what she can and cannot read.

Sophy was quite loveable as a character I thought; Julian on the other hand at times was not. While his motives are quite known he still comes off as stern, intractable, and unwilling to reach compromises not in his favor… he breaks his side of the bargain while Sophy always keeps hers and dares to get mad when Sophy questions his honor. Depending on the reader you might be tempted to throw the book because of his outlandish behavior. Also true, however, is that you might enjoy his high handedness. In addition Julian is protective and concerned for his new wife. By the end I was persuaded to like him, but he was definitely ridiculous at times. Perhaps that makes him flawed realistically. Grin.

Rating: ★★★★☆

Buy: Seduction

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Review: An Offer You Can’t Refuse by Jill Mansell

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What would constitute an offer you can’t refuse?

Is it money, glory and fame, mercy for a loved one, promises of everlasting passion…

For Lauren (whose gone by Lola since she was little) it’s the first and she has to give up the last to get it. Mrs. Tennant, her boyfriend’s mother, corners her at work and offers an outrageous sum of money for Lola to break up with her son. Naturally, Lola is hurt, furious, and promptly refuses. She loves Dougie with all her heart! They’ve made plans to be together forever! Mrs. Tennant, cool as a cucumber, sits patiently while Lola rants and raves and promises to tell Dougie everything. It becomes clear she’s not getting through to Dougie’s mum, and so Lola hops out of the car and takes the bus home.

Rattled and in need of comfort she calls her friend, who offers some practical advice for a teen. This is advice Lola doesn’t want to hear and tries to call Dougie up at his hotel where he’s staying while sorting out his housing for university that year. The woman behind the desk says he’s gone out with a guy and two girls confirming the friend’s words from before. Still Lola is determined to wait until she sees Dougie again to do anything rash. She loves him, they can get through this… but then Lola runs into her Dad upstairs and everything changes in an instant. Lola must do the impossible and give up the love of her young life to accomplish it.

Ten years later, Lola runs into Doug and his family again through some bizarre happenstance. Doug is shocked and angry; immediately distancing himself from Lola. When he finds out about the money shortly thereafter he’s beyond angry. Lola in his eyes is scum. All Lola wants is to win him back… if only she could tell him why, but her sense of honor refuses to allow her this easy escape. She made a promise and she’s going to keep it, even if it means losing Doug all over again.

I found Lola at 27 to still retain most of the naive 17 year old girl she’d been. She should have been more grownup I felt. I know it wouldn’t be the same book if she’d come right out and told Doug why she took the money, but this was a point of contention for me. She stalks him too, not in the ‘I’m outside your window watching you shower type‘ of stalking, but in the ‘whenever I found out where you are or will be going I try to be there too‘ way. The older Doug showed no signs of weakening his resolve to ignore/hate Lola until the very end of the book, making the reunion a bit too hasty for me. It wasn’t as satisfying as I had hoped.

There were times in the beginning of the book I was hoping Lola would fall in love with the second love of her life… the next door neighbor Gabe. He showed signs of knowing how she thought, what motivated her, did things for her (like sit and watch awful chick flick movies) and keep her in the front of his thoughts. Lola was also devastated with the idea of never seeing him again when he after a girl in Australia (it ended poorly, he came right home). In the end he’s just a great male friend for Lola.

Overall I’d give it Rating: ★★★★☆.