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Book Review

‘Someone Else’s Love Story’ is good gossip

3/19/2014

bookCourtesy of Beaverdale Books

Review by Fay Jones

William Morrow & Company

11/19/13

$26.99

HIV

300 pp.

Shandi Pierce is 21 years old living life with her precocious 3-year-old son, Natty, and her best friend, Walcott, in tow while trying to better her life. She’s taking herself and Natty from her mother’s small-town Georgia home to her father’s condo in the big city, where she’ll be closer to school and can cut down on her commute as she finishes college. Her rite-of-passage exodus is interrupted early on, though, as they pull her packed VW Beetle into a Circle K lot and, once inside, are held up at gunpoint.

As the robbery goes awry, Stevie points his gun toward Natty. That’s when tall, handsome William Ashe steps in front of the gun, and Shandi falls “dizzy-down in love with him.”

After the convenience store situation ends, Shandi frequents William’s house, inserting herself and her son into his life, convinced they are all destined to be together. Walcott is perturbed and ruffles at William’s existence. Paula, “William’s Walcott,” equally rebukes Shandi. Meanwhile, William is dealing with a heartbreaking past involving his wife and daughter. He is stunned when a bullet from Stevie didn’t relieve him, as he’d hoped, of the sorrow, anger and suffering. As Shandi uses William’s help as a genetic researcher to identify Natty’s biological father, she is able to confront the date rape scenario resulting in Natty’s conception. And William, with Shandi’s assistance, tends to his past as well.

In her new novel, Southern author Joshilyn Jackson delivers a unique, spunky love story that easily propels the reader forward and provides unexpected twists. Her quirky characters are colorfully flawed yet easy to root for. Jackson’s witty prose shapes a touching, unpredictable love story, feeling out what it means to face the world, to face one’s past and to be surprised by the miracles discovered along the way. CV

Fay Jones was born with a love of literature, which was finely shored up throughout her early years by her parents and a beloved children’s librarian who wore the thickest glasses ever manufactured.

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