Monday, May 25, 2015

Review: Suddenly One Summer by Julie James

Suddenly One Summer by Julie James
Publisher: Jove
Genre: Contemporary Romance Suddenly One Summer Cover
ISBN: 9780425273760
Release Date: June 2, 2015
Source: Publisher
Buy it here: Amazon | B&N

Divorce lawyer Victoria Slade has seen enough unhappy endings to swear off marriage forever. That doesn’t mean she's opposed to casual dating—just not with her cocky new neighbor, who is as gorgeous and tempting as he is off-limits. But once she agrees to take on his sister’s case, she's as determined to win as ever—even if that means teaming up with Ford…

Investigative journalist Ford Dixon is bent on finding the man who got his sister pregnant and left her high and dry. He’s willing to partner with Victoria, despite the fact that the beautiful brunette gets under his skin like no other woman. He might not be looking to settle down, but there’s no denying the scorching attraction between them. Still, the more time he spends with Victoria, the more he realizes that the one woman as skeptical about love as he is might be the only woman he could really fall for…

Mix equal parts sass, smarts, passion, problems, emotion, and entertainment and you have Suddenly One Summer. Julie James has managed the impossible – to deliver a story that feels light and breezy but has three-dimensional characters who have very real problems. Ms. James has a unique way of balancing style with substance and the result is a fabulous story.

Since her home was broken into, high-power divorce lawyer Victoria Slade has been forced to acknowledge she has a panic disorder. For a person determined to always appear to have it together, this is both frustrating and frightening. I loved watching Victoria unpack her issues; she’s a realistic, sympathetic character whose mix of strength and vulnerability make her relatable and endearing. While she works with a therapist on coping mechanisms, Victoria temporarily rents a condo, which just so happens to come with an arrogant, too handsome for his own good neighbor. Ford Dixon is charming and he knows it, and he and Victoria definitely start off on the wrong foot. Their mutual antagonism is hilarious, and when you add in their mutual attraction… Well, let’s just say that Ms. James knows how to make sparks fly. The pages of Suddenly One Summer practically fly by as Ford and Victoria snap and smolder. When Victoria decides to team up with Ford and help him track down the father of his sister’s child, things only get more interesting. The sexual tension heats up, but it’s complemented by Ford and Victoria’s growing respect and understanding for one another. And though neither of them is looking to fall in love, that’s exactly what happens. Of course, when you have a stubborn hero and heroine, things aren’t going to be easy. The ghosts of their pasts, secrets, and the dreaded “big misunderstanding” are obstacles that threaten Victoria and Ford’s burgeoning relationship.

Suddenly One Summer is a standalone novel, but characters from Ms. James’s FBI/US Attorney series do appear. You don’t have to have read that series in order to appreciate the characters, but after finishing up Ford’s book I’m definitely moving his best friend Brooke’s story, Love Irresistibly, up in my “to be read” pile. As with all of Ms. James’s books, Suddenly One Summer shows the author’s knowledge and attention to detail regarding her characters and plot, adding depth and a sense of realism to the book.

Julie James has an effervescent style that grabs your attention from the start, but it’s her intelligent, fully developed characters and sensual love stories that take her books to the next level. Suddenly One Summer is a truly entertaining story that is sure to delight any contemporary romance fan.

FTC Disclosure: I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.