Review: Just One Thing by Holly Jacobs

just one thingReviewed by Shelly

We’re all greater than the sum of our parts. We’re a friend, sister, brother, mother, father, son, daughter, mentor – the list can go on and on. We’re different things to different people and that is what the dash is about. You might ask what’s the ‘dash’? A long time ago someone told me that beginning and end are not the important dates; it’s the ‘dash’ that counts. That’s what Holly Jacobs focuses on in Just One Thing … the ‘ – ’.

This is a quick and engaging read. I didn’t find a lot of romance in the telling because it’s told primarily in flashbacks and focuses on Lexie’s past. And Lexie’s past, although interesting and sometimes wonderful, shows us why she’s sad and living by herself in a cottage that’s pretty tucked away. One of the things I enjoyed about this story was the style it was told, but there were passages that I had to read a couple of times because I wasn’t sure of the time frame. And unlike what I’m used to in flashbacks, this isn’t told in sequential order – instead it does jump around.

Lexie’s story slowly unfolds as she tells the local bartender Sam Corner one thing at a time about herself. Every Monday, Lexie McCain makes the trek to the local pub where she has a single beer on her bar stool. She tells Sam her one thing, then heads home. It’s not until months later that Lexie realizes that in a bar, she’s not the only one and there are in fact a lot of people around including the man who cares enough to ask her about that one thing. I so wanted to feel and see the progression of something special between Lexie and Sam but I didn’t see it. I wasn’t convinced of her affections for Sam because she seems to say a lot of things in her head and I didn’t get that she and Sam had more than the obligatory conversation and interaction.

I wish I cared about either Lexie or Sam, because I thought their individual stories were compelling. Lexie had tragedy and sadness written all over her, but for this reader – she was too sad. That doesn’t look right when I see it written down, but Lexie was so sad and she clearly didn’t want anyone sharing her sorrow because she’d withdrawn from her family and whatever friends she had. It’s hard for me to feel compassion for that kind of character because, to me, she acted like she was the only one suffering.

Then there’s Sam. Sam seemed to be a nice guy and we do find out about him through his own series of flashbacks, but I didn’t feel that connection with him either. When I feel like I’m walking in the characters shoes, that’s when I connect but sometimes I feel like a voyeur peeking in a window and that’s the way I felt about this story.

Happy Reading Folks!

Rating: C

*ARC provided by Montlake Romance via NetGalley for review

Click to purchase: Amazon

Just One Thing
by Holly Jacobs
Release Date: June 10, 2014
Publisher: Montlake Romance

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