As 28 year old New York paralegal Rebecca Strand’s widowed father lays dying, he confesses a secret: he had an affair 26 years earlier when Rebecca was just a toddler. Now he wants Rebecca to deliver the secret stash of letters he wrote, but never mailed, to the daughter he fathered. Rebecca’s lawyer boyfriend, Michael, is adamant that she forget the woman exists. He’s sure the woman will be an opportunist who will demand half of Rebecca’s father’s million-dollar estate. But Rebecca, now without any family in the world, can’t help but wonder about her one living relative. With her relationship with Michael in tatters, Rebecca drives from New York City to Maine to find Joy Jayhawk, who operates a Weekend Singles Tour service out of an orange mini-van that her regulars dub “The Love Bus.” Enter a cast of lovable, colorful characters, from Joy’s eccentric mother to the singles on The Love Bus, and a sexy carpenter for whom Rebecca finds herself unexpectedly falling in love…
Melissa Senate is definitely one of my go to chick lit authors. She writes the kind of stories that even though I have nothing in common with the characters in her books, I connect with them anyway. She has a unique talent for writing stories that I can’t put down. This was definitely one of them. The last book by Melissa Senate that I read was Love You To Death and I really enjoyed that book. I can still remember the day that I read that book. I cried and I rejoiced in everything Abby Foote went through and at the end of the book I was so damn happy for her.
I felt the exact same way for Rebecca Strand. Rebecca was just an average 28 year old woman living in New York City with her boyfriend, Michael happy as can be until the day before her ailing father dies, he drops the biggest bomb on her that a father could ever drop. He dropped the I’m dying but you won’t be alone in this world even though your Mom already died and I’m going to die tomorrow because you have a long lost half sister that I never claimed even though she’s my daughter bomb. It’s pretty crazy to even consider finding something out like this from your dying father but to live with this knowledge after he’s gone? What do you do with this bit of information?
Do you look her up and go meet her? Tell her who you are and who your father was? Do you keep the information to yourself and pretend your father was making his last final haha in your face joke? What would you have done?
Me, personally I have no idea. I mean, if you think about it…this long lost sister of yours has a mother and her mother was the woman that your father cheated on your mother with. Do you let that one go even though this long lost sister is the last familial tie you have on the face of the earth? There could be nothing but trouble and emotional upheaval if you go through with this but do you really want to risk not knowing the sister that you should have known about? I know that I would be deathly curious about this sister.
I thought Senate did a phenomenal job of writing this story out. She wrote a story and covered it from all angles. There really wasn’t a good side and bad side in this story but an entire gray area of what if’s. Since Rebecca was the main character in this story, it would have been so easy for us to be on her side. See things from her point of view and stick up for her but instead of doing that, Senate made us see Joy’s side. She made us see Pia’s side. She made this situation real by making the other people in this story real. She made the woman that Rebecca’s father had a two week affair with real and she made us see things from her point of view. She wrote about the daughter that came from the affair and she made us see things from her point of view. Nobody got off scotch free in this story and I really enjoyed the life lessons I learned from this book. You can’t judge someone just because you were hurt from the actions of others because they were hurt too. Things happened to them too. This book wasn’t easy by any means but it was …good. It was a damn good story that made one think about the choices they make in life and I really enjoyed it.
I really enjoyed the romance between Rebecca and Theo. I loved watching them meet, watching their attraction grow until the end and I loved watching them interact with each other. The way that Theo was with Rebecca made my heart pitter patter in my chest. It was a great addition to the book even though it wasn’t the main focus of the book. Chick lit books are more like real life. They aren’t perfect and though there’s romance in them, there’s so much more than just the romance. It’s always great to read a chick lit every once in a while because I feel more like these things could happen.
Senate excels at writing character development. She is a home run hitter when it comes to making me connect with her characters and coming to care for them. All of them. This was a beautifully written story that had me gripped from the beginning. It was a fantastic story with characters that were charming, rich and just downright lovable. From the girls in the Divorced Ladies Club to Harry and Rex to Arlene at the restaurant, I loved them all. I was glad to get to know Joy right along with Rebecca and it was hard to read through the first hiccups of their relationship but at the end of the book when I closed it, I was so satisfied with what I had read that I wanted to start all over again. It was a good one. A book that I could see myself buying a copy for all of my sisters. I enjoyed it and I think everyone who reads it will enjoy it too. So would I recommend it to others? You betcha!
..and that’s your scoop!
Book cover and blurb credit: http://barnesandnoble.com