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Not What I Expected
By Jewel E. Ann
I don’t think I will ever be able to look at a turkey’s head the same way again. This is also the first time that I’ve ever mentioned a turkey’s head in one of my reviews, but I digress.
Everyone knows that being in a long-term relationship isn’t always easy. Once the honeymoon stage in a relationship is over and the comfort level rises, the little annoyances start to rear their ugly heads. Even the things that we may have once found cute and endearing in our partners have lost their luster and now just grate on our last nerves. Jewel E. Ann had asked her readers for some examples of what their significant others do or say that gets under their skin, and what did she do with these tidbits of information? She incorporated these reader responses into this novel, and the result was both hilarious and honest. I couldn’t help but share many of them with my husband.
Elsie’s life had changed in the blink of an eye. Her twenty-two-year marriage was over, she was running the family business, and her life felt as if it were in limbo. When a new store opens across the street from hers, offering up new, innovative, healthier items, she worries that this competition may be the downfall of her family’s store and that Kael, the new store owner, might be the downfall of her reputation in this small town.
Kael Hendricks is nice, helpful, and charming. He’s also her rival and twelve years her junior. And Elsie can’t help but be drawn to what he offers her. He’s not looking for love or attachment, but he is up for a good time, and he tempts Elsie into letting go and just living in the moment.
I loved the chemistry and the banter between Elsie and Kael. Their attraction was electric and undeniable. Despite how much they enjoyed each other’s company, Elsie wanted to keep their interactions away from the eyes and ears of her inquisitive neighbors and family. She not only had to deal with her guilt, but also her deeply ingrained morals, religious beliefs, and what was expected of her.
Not What I Expected is a novel that deals with relationships, loss, and finding yourself. It’s about allowing yourself the simple pleasures in life, finding your happy place, being true to your wishes and desires, and putting yourself first. I enjoyed Elsie’s growth throughout this book. I was on her side from the beginning and wanted her to find a sense of peace and contentment, with or without a man by her side.
Filled with plenty of humor, heart, and a sizzling romance, Not What I Expected is another entertaining read from this talented author.