For a number of years now I’ve listened to audiobooks in the car, instead of my country music radio. As much as I like music, right now I like being able to “read” while on the move. Luck was with me one day a while back when I found quite a few of Susan Mallery’s audiobooks at a local Goodwill. I mix romance with mystery and thrillers when it comes to audiobooks, only because sometimes the narrators in romance don’t always work for me. This time, however, the whole package was one job well done.
I love the opening of this book when we meet Jayne and David as they’re meeting again after a long while. Jayne grew up with David’s family after the death of her mother and she had nowhere to go. David’s sister Rebecca was and is Jayne’s best friend, so their parents took Jayne in and gave her a good life. Both David and Rebecca are back home after moving away years before. Their mother – who turns out to be one horrible piece of work – has planned a party for her son on his return. Actually, it’s all Jayne’s event planning, which she’s phenomenal at, aside from also being a terrific nurse, and it’s during last-minute preparations that the momentous reunion between her and David, whom she’s secretly been in love with for so long, takes place, and so begins the subtle but wonderful changes in their relationship.
In this story, the old adages “Like father like son” and “Like mother like daughter” are very much true. While Rebecca tries so hard not to be like her mother, who’s lofty opinion of herself and her place in the community is totally misplaced – especially considering her beginnings – the apple doesn’t fall from the tree in the long run. Although there are a few good spots in Rebecca’s apple, there are none in her mother’s. The exact opposite goes for David and his father. His dad has always been happy they took Jayne in – she’s a smart and very likable woman – and David is also seeing that for himself now, especially because he’s come home to settle down. Neither of them hold any of their ideals over Jayne’s head, unlike the women in the family.
And so the relationships in the books begin to change as attitudes and life shift for each of these characters. David and his dad are so good at that shifting and making something good out of whatever comes their way. However, Rebecca and her mother can’t seem to break free of the mold they’ve been in for years, which is especially sad for Rebecca after years of contention with her mom. And then there’s the growing love between David and Jayne, which slowly builds and they each have to make some hefty decisions in the end. You know they’re going to have a great life as they work together, both in business and in their personal life. They have a lot to overcome and a lot to live for.
The narrator does a stellar job throughout the book, all voices fitting the characters, as well as her voice being pleasing and perfect for the job. I really, really enjoyed this audiobook. I listened to it several months ago and I still remember so much about it, which sometimes just doesn’t happen for me. So this one is highly recommended, especially the audio, but I know the print will be a great read too.
Rebecca Worden is the wild child in her wealthy family. The once-popular diva has burned so many bridges that no one will talk to her except Jayne, whose late mother was a housekeeper in Rebecca’s Beverly Hills neighborhood. Rebecca’s mother considers Jayne a calming influence on her out-of-control child and Jayne becomes part surrogate daughter, part servant to the Wordens.
A decade later, when Rebecca returns home along with her brother, David, it is an uneasy reunion. Jayne, having loved David from afar all these years, is nervous about his return. Loyalties are tested and friendships broken when true feelings are exposed, and Jayne must decide if she can risk giving her heart to a man connected to the very family that has used her for years.
No excerpt available.