Monday, 12 January 2015

To Fall In Love Again - David Burnett

About the book...
Drew Nelson did not plan to talk with anyone that morning. He did not plan to make a new friend. He certainly did not plan to fall in love. He resisted all of Amy’s attempts to draw him out− at the hotel, at the airport, on the airplane− giving hurried responses and burying his face in a pile of papers. It was only when the flight attendant offered coffee, and a muscle in Amy’s back twitched as she reached for it, and the cup tipped, and the hot liquid puddled in Drew’s lap that they began to talk. 

Earlier in the year, each had lost a spouse of over thirty years. Drew’s wife had died of a brain tumor, Amy’s husband when his small airplane nose-dived to earth, the engine at full throttle − an accident, it was ruled.
They live in the same city. Both have grandchildren. They are about the same age. Consciously, or not, they both are looking to love again.  But relationships do not exist in vacuums. Drew is wealthy, and Amy is middle class. Amy is “new” in town – she and her husband moved to Charleston twenty-five years ago – while Drew’s family has lived there for three centuries. Drew lives below Broad, a code word for high society, old families, power, and money. Amy’s home is across the river.

Class warfare may be less violent than it was in the past, but when Drew invites Amy to the St Cecelia Ball, battle lines are drawn. In a city in which ancestry is important, the ball’s membership is passed from father to son, and only those from the oldest families attend.
Family, friends, co-workers all weigh in on their relationship and choose sides. Allies are found in unexpected places. Opposition comes from among those who were thought to be friends. Though they are gone, even their spouses − through things they have done and things they have said − wield influence in the conflict that follows.

Amy begins to suspect that Drew is one of them, the rich snobs who despise her, while Drew concludes that Amy neither trusts him nor cares for him. As each questions the other’s motives, their feelings for each other are tested, and Drew and Amy are challenged to consider if they truly want to fall in love again.

BUY LINKS:-

About The Author...
I live in Columbia South Carolina, with my wife and our blue-eyed cat, Bonnie. I enjoy traveling, photography, baking bread, and the Carolina beaches.
We have traveled widely in the United States and the United Kingdom. During one trip to Scotland, we visited Crathes Castle, the ancestral home of the Burnett family near Aberdeen.
My photographic subjects have been as varied as prehistoric ruins on the islands of Scotland, star trails, sea gulls, and a Native American powwow.
I went to school for longer than I want to admit, and I have graduate degrees in psychology and education. I was formerly director of research for our state education department. 
We have two daughters and three grandchildren. To Fall in Love Again is my third novel.

AUTHOR LINKS:-

My thoughts...
I was part of the cover reveal for this book and loved the sound of it so signed up to post a review as part of the blog tour organised by JB at Brook Cottage Books.

The story begins at a nursing home where the lead character Drew's wife dies from a brain tumour but not before making him promise not to spend the rest of his days alone, but to find love again -a promise he reluctantly agrees to but, really doesn't ever envisage being able to keep.

That is until he meets Amy, on a journey home.  She too is widowed but her husband died on the day she filed for divorce!  An unlikely friendship begins, they couldn't be more different in almost every way, from their backgrounds to finance and class. Yet, they have a connection a bit like a magnetic pull.  

I thought David described the reactions of Drew and Amy's friends and family upon hearing of their relationship with accuracy.  Whose friends and family aren't going to be protective when faced with a situation outside of their comfort zone? Especially when you have to remember that both characters are older, not in their youths - alone, when they should be enjoying their retirement and grandchildren.  Nobody likes change and it is being dragged out of their comfort zone and ignorance from both sides that fire them up, causing more than a little stress and tension.  This is not helped by Drew and Amy themselves, who each have their own doubts and insecurities, not seeing how a relationship could really work - they are so different on the surface.

The author takes us on an emotional journey, as time and time again Drew and Amy come up against objections and reasons not to pursue a relationship. Ultimately having to decide  if they really are ready to fall in love again.  The time just flew by whilst reading this book, I particularly loved Amy, outwardly she was feisty and strong but like all people who have had a few knocks her true, gentle side was well hidden and Drew seemed the perfect, gentleman to break through her armour.  At times I could have shook the pair of them, so many misunderstandings on both parts. 

This is the first book I've read by David Burnett but I'm sure it won't be the last.  This book highlights the highs and lo's of having to begin a new relationship, later in life.  David created characters that had depth and were not superficial in any way, I really did care about them and their reactions and that of their friends and family seemed to be pitched just right.  It's a breath of fresh air to have a romance that doesn't follow the usual format, the fact that the characters were older and everything didn't just fall into place was very realistic.  The fact they had so many people on the side lines that genuinely cared for them enhanced the story for me, if you were married for thirty years and then took up with almost your complete opposite wouldn't you hope your friends would put up a fight - just in case you really had lost the plot?

If you haven't read David Burnett I urge you to visit Amazon and download this book now!