Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Book Review: The Story Guy by Mary Ann Rivers

The Story Guy by Mary Ann Rivers
Contemporary romance novella
ebook, 120 pages
Published July 8th 2013 by Loveswept (first published January 1st 2013)

In this eBook original novella, Mary Ann Rivers introduces a soulful and sexy tale of courage, sacrifice, and love.

I will meet you on Wednesdays at noon in Celebration Park. Kissing only.

Carrie West is happy with her life . . . isn’t she? But when she sees this provocative online ad, the thirtysomething librarian can’t help but be tempted. After all, the photo of the anonymous poster is far too attractive to ignore. And when Wednesday finally arrives, it brings a first kiss that’s hotter than any she’s ever imagined. Brian Newburgh is an attorney, but there’s more to his life . . . that he won't share with Carrie. Determined to have more than just Wednesdays, Carrie embarks on a quest to learn Brian’s story, certain that he will be worth the cost. But is she ready to gamble her heart on a man who just might be The One . . . even though she has no idea how their love story will end?

He takes a very deep breath in, and at the same time that I look up into his face, he's curling his palm around the nape of my neck. His hand is hot and my skin shrinks into goose bumps all over.
"Okay?" he keeps our gazes connected, and everything about the way he holds his body, touches my neck, is asking permission.
I didn't realize I was waiting for him to ask until I feel consent melting my bones. "Yeah," I whisper. And so he won't mistake what I want, "Kiss me."

Break out the fans, turn up the air conditioner. The Story Guy is one of the most sweetest, sexiest, touching romances I've read this year. And it's a novella. For a shorter work, this story packed quite an emotional punch and left a word print across my heart. Carrie and Brian's love story is unique and the prose is lovely--shifting from unbelievably aware of every sensation to unabashedly passionate, sliding easily into steamy (yes, I need the adverbs).

I will meet you on Wednesdays at noon in Celebration Park. Kissing only.

The idea of seeing such a personal ad might invoke a comical response for someone already in a relationship or an immature individual, but for someone with a yearning for affection, for the promise of a chance at love, the words could be a lifeline. For Carrie, a single librarian watching her closest friends involved in relationships, she feels the pressure of being alone. She's tired and she wants someone to share her life with. Those words, especially the kissing part, resonate inside her. Her see saw thoughts after seeing the ad were so realistic. Her  response to this man named Brian's ad and picture made so much sense and I instantly connected with her. 

I waited for their first Wednesday meeting with a flutter in my Jane Austen spoiled romantic heart. Mary Ann Rivers delivered--and then some. Their first meeting surprisingly didn't melt my Kindle. There were passages so breathtakingly candid and gorgeous, I reread them to soak in their splendor. When an author can touch my soul with her words, that is a writer I'll remember. I am grateful to Ms. Rivers for penning such an emotional read.

What can I say about Brian? Selfless, stoic, painfully candid and awkward, he's as sympathetic as they come. His story tugs at the heart strings. His obligation and need to do the right thing often conflicts with his need to live and be a man. His meeting Carrie awakens dormant feelings which he struggles with. Their Wednesday gatherings under the pergola, the calls, their love story sucked me in and made me forget about everything bad in the world. There is more going on besides romance so expect to find conflict, heartbreak, sadness and more kissing.

I won't spoil the twists of this story. I will end on this note: if romance is your thing, download a copy of The Story Guy, light some candles, pour some wine, put the phone on vibrate, and lounge in a warm bubble bath. Let Ms. Rivers entertain you with her love story about a woman named Carrie and a man named Brian and their Wednesdays in the park.

Rating: 5
Cover comment:
I see models in the buff in similar poses on so many romance novel covers. Here, this pose works. Why? The simple emotion on their faces--the way his lips touch the side of her face, her closed eyes, open lips, and their hands on each other. This is how romantic is done.

Book source:
Netgalley and then purchased.

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