"I'm too old to believe in fairy tales, Gareth," she said quietly.
"And my kids are too young to have to stop believing in them."
Setting aside the dialogue that tips the cheesy scale a few times too often, the severely dated character details on the hero (because, seriously, what man can pull off a ponytail at 42 in 2013 and not get any grief?) and the pathologically stereotypical plot progression…
This was a pretty decent read.
This was, for all intents and purposes, a fairytale story between 42-year old Welsh actor Gareth Connor who suddenly finds himself in a small town in Ottawa falling in love with 35-year old single mother of 3 Gwynneth Jacobs and her baggage. Except Gareth has his own kind of baggage not including the silly double Gs between their names.
The plot is so familiar I may or may not have watched a Dennis Quaid movie about it and yet, I couldn't help but be utterly charmed by the unassuming delivery of the story. There are a lot of soapbox-worthy issues here that were foregone in favor of the uncomplicated storyline which I really REALLY liked. Not every story about a single mother finding a second chance at love need to be an opportunity to celebrate feminism and I'm happy that the heroine in this one was likable enough on her own to not need any of that added flavor. Sometimes I just want some fluffeh adult-style and this one pretty much brought it.
I may hate her name a little but as a heroine, Gwyn was pretty awesome. I'm not a parent, but I find her dealing with the difficulties of being a single mother of three realistic and utterly refreshing. The attraction between the protagonists may be instant but the progression of their relationship was believably paced. And while the conflict between and within the characters were hardly original, I liked how it was handled logically and maturely.
The ending was a bit contrived and felt a bit too cinematic. Airport chasing followed by the chaser finding the chasee waiting at home with the ex, the long lost daughter, the best friend and the kids could easily be the end to any Sandra Bullock movie. Hmmm, now I'm beginning to wonder if this was a 90s Sandra Bullock movie with Dennis Quaid, but I digress. Gareth's dialogue could've also reined in the cheese but then he's an actor so I'm giving him a pass. Though I can imagine Katie (Gwyn's eldest) snarking against it a few years down the line.
I do wish the author would update some of the character details, and twists on this one. I think it was published first in 2010 under a different title but something about the story screamed 90s to me. Because some readers may be turned off by the dated feel of the story and miss out on the enjoyable moments this book did bring.
Dennis Quaid appears in this review because of Kim.
ARC provided by Michem Publising thru Netgalley in exchange for an unbiased review.