Lovelines (Wilmington Saga #1)
Author: S. Walden
Date of Publication: March 25, 2014
Arrive at work at 7:58 A.M. sharp. Check. Count forty-seven steps to cubicle. Check. Arrange pens in their red-blue-black-green-purple order of importance. Check. Apply hand sanitizer before opening email. Double check.
And that’s just the first few minutes of her work day.
Thirty-one-year-old proofreader Bailey Mitchell is a slave to her tics. She inherited Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder from her father, and it’s done nothing but inhibit her love life. She’s run the gamut of boyfriends—none of them willing or able to cope with her condition.
Enter 32-year-old Reece Powell, her new coworker at Beach Elite Marketing Firm. He’s more than willing to cope. He finds her habits cute and quirky . . . for now. Reece gets the girl, and life coasts along for them until Bailey experiences a devastating blow. Tragedy exacerbates her OCD, and Reece realizes her tics aren’t so cute and quirky anymore. Just like all the others, he has the choice to leave.
But Reece isn’t like all the others.
In the interest of full disclosure, I share a literary agency with Ms. Walden, but my opinions are my own and are in no way influenced by that fact (other than I most likely wouldn’t have read the book without that connection, and that would have been sad for me).
I liked the book overall. It’s not entirely my style, being a contemporary romance, but I was intrigued by the notion of a character who truly has obsessive compulsive disorder, yet functions somewhat well in the normal world. Bailey was a sweetheart and trying very hard to function in a world when she’s definitely got some wiring wrong in her head. She knows she’s got the problem and she’s doing everything she can to still function. It’s not easy, but she manages.
Reece is intrigued and actually enjoys the way Bailey has her tics. He hurts for her struggles, but wants only to be there for her, not wanting to cure her or even love her in spite of her tics. He’s an incredibly patient man and he needs it to be able to have a life with Bailey.
There were a lot of secondary characters and plot threads. I enjoyed Bailey’s relationship with her fellow OCD sufferer, her father. The mother/Bailey and sister/Bailey relationships were sometimes heart wrenching to read. Bailey’s best friend Erica was a hoot, and I loved the spray-tan business.
Now – few things I didn’t like. I felt that, in the end, Bailey’s practically shrugged off her OCD tendencies. Maybe that’s not what the author intended, for the reader to think she was magically cured, but that’s how I read it. I also didn’t get the point of the secret marriage of a secondary character, and why we needed to read about it. I get introducing a second book in a series, but it just seemed like such a strange disconnect for me.
The book is written in a combination of first person (Bailey), third person (Reece) and omniscient. The omniscient thing really didn’t work for me. I felt like it was head-hopping and I think the author’s going to get slammed for it. I know I would have knocked it, but I actually asked Ms. Walden about it when I came across the first section. Most readers/reviewers aren’t going to do that. Her choice to meander through everybody’s heads was deliberate. I don’t get it, I didn’t like it, but thankfully the section was limited. It in no way ruined my opinion of the book, it just totally yanked me out of the story the few times it happens. It’s just not my cup of tea.
So, in the end, I liked this book and give a 3.5 stars. It probably would have been 4, but I just had too many hesitations about that jarring omniscient POV.
Check out the book. It’s out today!
Book provided by author in exchange for an honest review.