Wait For It
by Jenn McKinlay
Release Date: August 10, 2021
Reviewed by PJ
Stuck in a dreary Boston winter, Annabelle Martin would like nothing more than to run away from her current life. She's not even thirty years old, twice-divorced, and has just dodged a marriage proposal… from her ex-husband. When she’s offered her dream job as creative director at a cutting-edge graphic design studio in Phoenix, she jumps at the opportunity to start over.
When she arrives in the Valley of the Sun, Annabelle is instantly intrigued by her anonymous landlord. Based on the cranky, handwritten notes Nick Daire leaves her, she assumes he is an old, rich curmudgeon. Annabelle is shocked when she finally meets Nick and discovers that he’s her age and uses a wheelchair. Nick suffered from a stroke a year ago, and while there's no physical reason for him not to recover, he is struggling to overcome the paralyzing fear that has kept him a prisoner in his own home.
Despite her promise to herself not to get involved, Annabelle finds herself irresistibly drawn to Nick. And soon she wonders if she and Nick might help each other find the courage to embrace life, happiness, and true love.
This book has many of the elements that have made Jenn McKinlay one of my go-to authors. It's brimming with humor and charm but isn't afraid to go deeper into emotionally sensitive issues. I'm not sure how I would classify it; it's kind of a blend of women's fiction and romantic comedy, with heart-tugging emotion, a solid romance, and plenty of humor sprinkled throughout.
Nick and Annabelle are characters I was immediately drawn to. They engaged my emotions and it didn't take long for me to become invested in their happiness. I'm a pushover for a grumpy-sunshine pairing and they are so that. They're vividly depicted, complex characters with significant emotional baggage to be unpacked and dealt with. I loved the friction between them, the snappy dialog, and especially the notes exchanged back and forth. Who knew snarky notes could be such delicious foreplay?
The romance develops gradually, at a perfect tempo for these two considering where they are emotionally at the beginning of the book. Each has a wonderful growth arc that makes their eventual relationship believable and one to celebrate. At first, I thought the growth emphasis would be on Nick (and his is significant) but Annabelle's self-reckoning is just as important. It's immensely satisfying to watch both of them evolve.
The secondary cast is vividly depicted and adds a great deal of richness to the overall story. The villain is someone most of us have probably had the misfortune to work with at some point in our lives. Watching him handed his just desserts is deliciously satisfying. Nick's relationship/friendship with his physical therapist made me laugh and gave me warm fuzzies at the same time. McKinlay nails that male "are you my friend or just a pain in my ass" dynamic. Then there's an unexpected family situation, a surprising revelation from Annabelle's BD (Big Disappointment a/k/a ex-husband #2), a young boy whose interactions with Nick brought me to tears, and more. McKinlay seamlessly weaves them all together to create another heart-tugging story that made me laugh out loud, wipe away more than a few tears, and enthusiastically cheer the final outcome.
Have you read any of Jenn McKinlay's books yet?
Do you enjoy a grumpy-sunshine pairing?
What the last book you read that made you laugh out loud?
One person who posts a comment before 11:00 PM, August 11 will receive a print copy of Wait For It.
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Sounds very good I been reading her cupcake series I love it,ReplyDelete
I have read several of Jenn's books and loved them. This book sounds wonderful. grumpy sunshine books are lovely. A laugh out loud book was For Once in my life.ReplyDelete
I have enjoyed this author's books for years. Paris is Always a good idea was special. A book which was fun and delightful was The Silver Ladies of Penny Lane.ReplyDelete
Yes, I have read several of Jenn's books and do like grumpy/happy pairing.ReplyDelete
I have read one of hers, and a couple of others are on my TBR list. A grumpy/happy pairing sounds fun!ReplyDelete
I love Jenn McKinlay's books! Thanks for this recommendation, I'm adding it to my TBR!ReplyDelete
What a life! When I was nearly thirty, going through a divorce, and living in the Boston area, I escaped to Phoenix for my cousin's wedding! Thanks for the memories and the review.ReplyDelete
Susan in AZ
I love seeing sunshine warm a grumpy person's heart. Thanks for the lovely review.ReplyDelete
I have read many of Jenn's books! Wonderful review PJ!💜ReplyDelete
"Grumpy-Sunshine" Pairing! I love it! I have not heard that phrasing, but yes, I do love that kind of couple. Mainly because I'm the grump... Putting this on my list!ReplyDelete
I haven't read her books. I do love a grumpy-sunshine pairing.ReplyDelete
I am not sure how it happened but this is a new to me author. It is evident I need to correct that,.ReplyDelete
This book sounds terrific. And yes, I like the idea that someone who is not cheerful can become cheerful because of the love of another.
The last book I read that made me laugh out loud was Farewell Blues by Maggie Robinson. That entire series is a wonderful bunch of stories.
I hope that everyone is well and safe and happy.
I agree with you on every point in your review, PJ. McKinlay is also a must read author for me. I've been reading her since I discovered her cozy mysteries.ReplyDelete
I've read her books and enjoyed them! This looks like another great book. I do enjoy grumpy heroes. Thanks for the chance to win.ReplyDelete
I have not read anything from Jenn McKinlay, but I do enjoy grumpy-sunshine pairings. :) Sounds wonderful!ReplyDelete
I've not read any of her books yet. I love reading grumpy heroes. Thanks for the chance to win!ReplyDelete
I've not yet read anything by Jean McKinlay, but you've very much made me want to, PJ! I just recently laughed out loud--several times--while reading Sophie Kinsella's Can You Keep a Secret.ReplyDelete
Jenn McKinlay is a new to me author.ReplyDelete
This personality pairing is always enjoyable. It sets up perfect opportunities for them to aggravate each other and tease. Being opposites doesn't mean they don't understand each other. They are in the perfect position to help one another. They are good for each other.
I like the books I read to include humor, so most of the books I read have at least a bit of it in them. I did laugh out loud while radio A Cowboy Of Legend by Linda Broday.
Stay cool and heathy.
Sorry about the multiple posts. I forgot that hitting the back arrow posts the comment again. Hopefully next time I'll remember to use the "Older Post" icon.ReplyDelete
Yes, I have read a few of her books and I have really enjoyed them! Thanks for the chance!ReplyDelete
I've read A Likely Story (Library Lover's Mystery, #6), and I've been meaning to get the other books in this series. I do like the grumpy/sunshine combination. I think it makes for a fun read. It's been awhile since I've read a laugh out loud book. I've been reading a quite a bit of mysteries and historical fiction. bluedawn95864 at gmail dot comReplyDelete