By Kelly Bridgewater
I may not be a huge fan of historical or contemporary romance, but there are a few authors who take my breath away, and I can’t wait to devour their latest books. Becky Wade, Sarah E. Ladd, and Julie Lessman to name a few. I have read every single book by Julie Lessman; including her latest release Surprised by Love, which is great. The first two books of the Heart of San Francisco series are called, Love at Any Cost and Dare to Love Again.
Surprised by Love features the return of Megan McClare, the frumpy bookworm who wants to be a lawyer or a doctor. When returning home from Paris for the past year, she had a complete makeover. Gone are the huge glasses, frizzy orange hair covered with contacts and slick brown hair. Even Bram, her best friend who is ten years older than her, has his breath taken away when Megan enters the room at the beginning of the chapter. Megan is a caring, loving character who wants to help the wayward women of the bad part of town.
Similarly, Bram Hughes is a great strong shoulder for Megan to lean on. He has always been there to comfort and lead Megan whenever she has trouble with Drew Caldwell, the smart boy who was popular and picked on her throughout high school. Bram is the type of hero every girl would love to have in her life. He listens and always knows the things to make Megan smile. He gives into every whim that Megan wants to do, even sailing out further in the bay with storm clouds pounding in their direction. Bram made me sigh and happy a number of times.
Julie Lessman has a way with words by making her character’s actions come to life just beautifully. For instance, “[Logan] peered at her out of the corner of his eyes, the humor in her face coaxing a faint smile to his lips. ‘Your self-esteem is safe with me, Cait,’ he said, wishing she didn’t look so blasted beautiful in that form-fitting jade satin dress that heightened the green of her eyes. His mouth crooked. ‘Which is more than I can say for Turner’s face if he lords it over me tonight.’” (171). I love how she climbs into Logan’s mind that the reader can actually experience exactly what he is thinking about Cait. I can’t write that well yet. I keep struggling with making my characters that realistic.
Plus, I love how Julie Lessman creates her characters to be so realistic. They don’t fall in love on the first page and then wiggle around the concept of dating throughout the whole book. I enjoy that most of her characters are realistic. They may have feelings for someone else, but they do the right thing by staying true to their values.
I recommend any of Julie Lessman books to anyone, whether you like historical romance or not. I pass all my physical books off to my friends and family. Her books don’t stay long on my shelf, but I’m glad to pass books I enjoy off to others to enjoy.
Thank you, Julie Lessman for your God-given talent to write such moving and wonderfully written stories. I can’t wait to read more of your books.
I received a complimentary copy of Surprised by Love from Revell, and the opinions above are my own.