The topic of this month is Contemporary.
My Rating: 3 stars
Part of a series: London Legends #3.5
In April we have to look for a book that is ‘contemporary’, and as soon as I saw this book on my TBR I knew this was going to be the good one.
I discovered Kat Latham when she wrote a post in Dear Author about rugby union last year, during the World Cup. I usually like sports romance, but it was the first one I knew had a rugby team as its core so I was totally happy to give them a try.
This is a Christmas novella about Gwen Chambers, quite a tall nurse, who goes to a fundraising auction to bid for her future brother-in-law, as her sister doesn’t want anybody to spend an evening with her boyfriend. But in the end, she spends her sister’s money on another player, John Sheldon.
He is even bigger than her, and as soon as they meet, they like each other. But things happen and next they know, John appears in the hospital where Gwen works, with a head concussion.
It’s close to Christmas time, the first one John’s daughter is going to spend in England just with him, and he is looking forward to enjoying his time, but the thing is he’s got this problem and Gwen is one of the few people that can help him.
They (John, his 10-year old daughter than speaks only French and Gwen) spend lovely Christmas days together, in London. Gwen helps him with his injury, but also with his daughter, and very soon both of them have this feeling that they could fall in love and be a perfect match.
She’s got issues, he’s got issues, but nothing strange or uncommon, and they solve them in a very realistic way. And that’s what I liked most about this book, both John and Gwen acted, and felt and talked as common people in their daily lives. I had this feeling that Gwen and John are real people that exist somewhere.
Also, it’s one of the first romance novels set in London that really made me believe the characters where in the real city I’ve been to, and not a fairyland London full of Regency dukes where everybody lived in a magic place called Mayfair that has nothing to do with the actual London or Mayfair. Perhaps it’s just because it’s a contemporary novel.
I specially remember a moment when John says ‘How about we get ready and take a ferry from Canary Wharf to the Tower? Canary Wharf’s just a short Tube ride from here, and that way Agnes can see some of London from the Thames.’ And they go together with Agnes –his daughter-, and while Agnes and Gwen go skating, John rests and it was a perfectly quotidian moment. Something any couple could say and do in real life.
If it hasn’t got a higher grade it’s because children and Christmas atmosphere are not my thing, but certainly the plot, the characters and the world they live in are totally my thing.
So this is my first Kat Latham but it won’t be the last one.
Ramblings of a Daydreamer published a 5 stars review about this novella. Celebrity Readers? A 4 stars grade. And Jayne, in Dear Author, gaved it a B+.