Thursday, 6 August 2009

Review – There’s Only Been You – Donna Marie Rogers








Back Of The Book

Sara Jamison has no clue where Mike Andrews' been all these years, but she knows where she's been - busy raising their son. Two weeks after he accused her of cheating and disappeared from her life, Sara discovered she was something she never expected to be - an unwed pregnant teenager. But with the love and support of her annoyingly alpha-male family, she's managed to make a good life for herself and her young son. She even owns her own business, Sara's Bakery, which she's built into a thriving success. Sure, she works too hard and her social life is nonexistent, but for the most part, she's content.
Until the day Detective Mike Andrews walks into her bakery and back into her life..

 

Sara glanced over her shoulder when the screen door opened. Mike . The pan she'd been drying fell from her hands and clattered to the floor.

“We need to talk.”

“Where's Garrett?” she asked, attempting to peer around his broad shoulders. She tried not to make eye contact with him. As long as she didn't look him directly in the eye, she'd be able to maintain her composure.

“You've always put him on a goddamn pedestal.”

She bent over to pick up the pan. “Don't you dare say anything unkind about him.”

“He's a pain in the ass.”

Sara shot him a look. “He's not the only one.”

A slow smile curved his lips. “Now there's the Sara I know and love.”

“Don't you dare throw that word around. If you loved me we wouldn't be in this situation.” A surge of emotion tightened her chest and she silently cursed herself for letting him get to her.

Hands on his hips, Mike sighed. “Look, I know you have every reason to believe that, but it's just not true. I've loved you since the first moment I laid eyes on you.”

She paused. God, how she wanted to believe him. But if he'd truly loved her as he claimed, he'd never have been able to stay away for so long. She swallowed past the lump in her throat and reached into the drainer for something else to dry.

“All right, I'm done playing. Come on, we're going for a ride.” Mike reached out and grasped her elbow.

“I'm not going anywhere with you,” she said, yanking her arm free. “If you want to talk, we'll talk, but we're doing it right here.” She tossed the dishtowel on the counter and crossed her arms over her chest.

“You either follow me to my truck or I'll throw you over my shoulder and carry you there. But one way or another, we're taking a ride.”

She gasped. “If you touch me I'll scream bloody murder.”

“Then I guess I'll have to gag you as well.”

There’s Only Been You © Donna Marie Rogers

Review

Sara Jamison has just gotten some news that she didn’t think she would ever hear – Mike Andrews is coming home. Mike had left small town Green Bay for almost a decade and he has had no contact until now.

Sara is petrified because not only did Mike leave town but he also left her pregnant. Him coming home did nothing for the animosity that she and her family felt for him. But she can’t think only about her sore heart or her bruised ego – A child is involved and he deserves to know his father.

Mike Andrews is back home under less than ideal circumstances and as much as there was no love lose between him and this small town, there are a few things that he however misses and looks back on if not fondly but with some regret. His friendship with Nick his childhood friend and sparring partner is definitely a miss – his relationship with Nick’s sister Sara is feeling like a hot rod now even after all these years – but who can forgive someone who did the unthinkable and there was video evidence to prove him. He was not getting a warm fuzzy feeling for Sara at all.

With age come a new perspective and the wisdom to look at things from a different angle. Mike does exactly this and soon realize that Sara might just also be the injured party. He knows he has to follow through and make things right but a few things are happening as me makes this marvelous revelation. Sara is also finally developing a social life and Mike is not happy because Sara new squeeze is not someone Mike approves of.

Mike is in for a surprise but can alpha male Mike deal with this feisty new Sara that he has no choice but to deal with.

Positive

Small town stories does it for me and Ms Rogers gets this one right. The town building was easy to follow – the small town mindset was alluded to and she gave enough of the citified ways in the mix to make this an enjoyable place to visit.

From the beginning I was drawn in – with an inquisitive start – I was hooked. I wanted to find out not only Sara’s and Mike’s issues but the story behind it as well.

The protags themselves were strong – Mike is definitely alpha male and disgustingly manly with it. Sara was like a stick of match, catches quick and burns very hot. I like them, they so deserve each other.

The plot itself was a winner – as a series it Ms. Rogers gives a wonderful build-up of the Dynamics of the Jamison family. The individual siblings were all given an identity and somewhere about the middle of the book – I started picking favourites and wondered who was hotter.

Other than Sara and Mike trying to sort out their rekindling relationship, there were a few story lines that revolved I thought quite nicely around the main plot. Issues of trust, overindulgence, family unity and the underbelly of small society made an appearance at some point during this book.

Ms. Rogers voice is new to me, but I like how focus she was with the plot – her cast gelled and she was not overdramatic with the language. It was straight forward and you can see when the light bulb moment was reached. I will be reading more of her work.

Bottom Line

THERE ONLY BEEN YOU is a sweet read with from a new to me author. Ms. Rogers introduces me to an unforgettable cast of characters and with the small town setting as well as old love returned scenario I was hooked. There was a whole lot of food for thoughts in this book and I didn’t only love the main protags, I ended up falling in love with quite a few of the support cast and cant wait on there stories.

The pace and the emotional high and low point was dealt with, with tact and a quit grace that lives up to all that small town living is all about.

Definitely an author I will be following in the future – I liked her style alot.

Niggles

My only niggle was probably the convenience of Mike solving the video tape mystery after being away for so long– he all of a sudden thinks of the specific now that he was back home. I could probably say he is older and has more experience being a detective and all, but he has been a detective for a while now and he had nine years to think of this.

The mystery had to be resolved somehow – and after reading the book, this convenient way tied in alot of the loose ends that needed addressing. So the convenience served it’s purpose.

Cover

Would I be horrid if I said I didn’t like it. There is just something about it that just smirk insincerity and I wasn’t getting it. I really don’t like covers with faces.

12 Speak To Me:

elaing8 on 6 August 2009 at 22:49 said...

I won a copy of this book from the author.And she mentioned there was a sequel.
I haven`t read the book yet,but I`m glad I saw this review for it and that you enjoyed it.

Lea on 7 August 2009 at 00:31 said...

Hi EH:

Lovely review and snippet! I downloaded "Meant To Be", when I read Blodeuedd's review and the synopsis of the book. However after reading your thoughts I'm going to get this one as well.

Thank you so much for sharing. I too like small town romances.

Best
L

Cecile on 7 August 2009 at 01:21 said...

Hey EH!
Love the review hon!! I also got this one and the other one when I was at Blodeuedd's the other night!!! Her review was too irrestible!!!
I hope you had a great day and have a wonderful tomorrow!!

Donna Marie Rogers on 7 August 2009 at 03:40 said...

EH, thank you so much for such a wonderful review. I'm absolutely thrilled that you enjoyed it, and hope you like Meant To Be just as much. :-)

Elaine, I'm glad your copy arrived and hope you enjoy it as well.

Lea, I love small town settings, too. They're my favorite, for sure. ;-)

Cecile, not to sound like a broken record (LOL), but I sure hope you enjoy them as well. This series is close to my heart as There's Only Been You is the first book I wrote and the proverbial book of my heart. Though I really am a sucker for Garrett in Meant To Be. ;-)

Have a great night, everyone!

Blodeuedd on 7 August 2009 at 06:53 said...

Hi EH,
Tried not to read too much of our review, wanna keep some surprises for me :)

great review, loved that you liked it. Must start on my soon but will wait until September cos classes start next week

I think the cover is so cute, but then I love faces, I think books without them are weird. I guess that is why the make them both ways.

Brandy W on 8 August 2009 at 13:48 said...

Nice review EH and this is one I'm going to have to look into getting. I do love a small town story.

Erotic Horizon on 8 August 2009 at 21:43 said...

@Elain..

I loved it - the plot an the cast made it a wonderful read...

Drag it out and have a go..

You wont regret it.

E.H>

Erotic Horizon on 8 August 2009 at 21:44 said...

@Lea...

I am betting money you will love this one - it has a very girl next door feel to it...

Enjoy..

E.H>

Erotic Horizon on 8 August 2009 at 21:45 said...

@Cecile...

I think alot of us have to thank Blodeuedd for introducing us to a wonderful author...

You have a great weekend...

E.H>

Erotic Horizon on 8 August 2009 at 21:46 said...

@Donna ...

I love the book - so not a stretch to rave about it..

Meant to Be is also very good...

Looking forward to the next book in the series...

E.H>

Erotic Horizon on 8 August 2009 at 21:48 said...

@Blodeuedd..
I have to thank you for directing all of us it seems to a new and fabulous author...

I know you are on a timetable - but just think you have a brilliant book awaiting you when classes are settled down...

Thank you..

E.H>

Erotic Horizon on 8 August 2009 at 21:51 said...

BRANDY (big Scream)

Lovely you stopped by - are you recovered from RWA yet...

This one is right up your stream - and there's a second book which is just as good...

Review will be up for that on Monday....

E.H>