Faith Readers Group Review: Save the Date by Jenny B. Jones

I’m not sure if it was the fresh baked chocolate cobbler or heart-shaped pumpkin, chocolate chip muffins, or the chocolate cake with drizzled chocolate icing that threw me off or the heavenly aroma of coffee, but I forgot to get a picture of our Faith Readers book club group–and we had a brand new member!

For the month of February, we read the romantic comedy, Save the Date by Jenny B. Jones

It was pretty funny as we sat around eating dessert and sipping coffee because no one had tons to say. Why? We were all in agreement! For once! 

Here’s some of the things that were said:

“I didn’t want to read this book. I’m not a fan of romance, but a few pages in, I was like, ‘hey, this book is really good’.” 

“I thought the comedy and the romance was a perfect blend.”

“My favorite part of the whole book? She was a size ten!”

We talked about who  we pictured playing the part in a movie, because this book could most definitely be right up there with some of the best romantic comedies

No one thought the girl on the cover fit their profile of Lucy, the main character, but after a long discussion and a second…or third piece of cake, it was agreed if Kate Hudson put on about 30 pounds she could play Lucy. 

Some more thoughts:

“I loved the scene when she was took off down the sidewalk in her pajamas and he drove along beside her.”

“I loved the prayer with the new quirky Christians, “like a gold card, Lord, like a gold card!

Serious Thoughts: 
“I loved when the Youth Pastor had the teenagers nail lies the enemy had been telling them to the cross. I think that’s a great idea. Lucy had been believing lies so long too.”

“I don’t know how I’d feel if I found out a lie about my family.”

We talked about forgiveness, lies the enemy tells us about who we are and what we can’t do. 

It wasn’t a simple, light-hearted read. The theme was deep, at times a tear-jerker, but the mix of relevant humor and fun gave us breathing room and things to laugh out loud about. Literally laugh out loud. 

Out of 5 stars, we rated it a 4! 
Here’s a peek:

Jenny B. Jones

“You are cordially invited to the wedding of the year with the most unlikely bride and groom. Save the date…and say your prayers. When funding for Lucy’s non-profit job is pulled, she is determined to find out why. Enter Alex Sinclair Enterprises–the primary donor to Lucy’s non-profit organizaiton. Both Lucy and Alex have something the other desperately wants. Alex has it all…except for the votes he needs to win his bid for Congress. Despite their mutual dislike, Alex makes Lucy a proposition: pose as his fiancee in return for the money she desperately needs. Bound to a man who isn’t quite what he seems, Lucy finds her heart–and her future–on the line. Save the Date is a spunky romance that will have readers laughing out loud as this dubious pair try to save their careers, their dreams…and maybe even a date. “
If your life were a movie, what kind would it be? Drama, action-adventure, romantic comedy, B movie? LOL Can’t wait to hear these answers!

When Characters Meet

Wow me, please. Yes! Thank you! 
I’m talking about introducing the heroine and hero in a story. If you know me at all or follow this blog regularly, then you know I rarely write about writing. There are too many good writing blogs out there with people who can explain things much better than I, so I leave it to them.

But a comment left on my blog last Friday, the four books I’ve read over the last week and two days, and digging into an old ms of mine (polishing rewriting) has me thinking about how characters in stories meet for the first time.

The comment was left by Beth Vogt and she talked about when she met her husband, in a Karate studio, and he put her on the ground–also she was engaged to someone else. Of course she hooked me right there. My heart actually fluttered. 

There are a billion ways to introduce a hero and heroine, the earlier the better they say, but sometimes it may come fifty pages in. I wouldn’t personally go much further than that and some will disagree with even fifty pages. But as a reader, I think if things are moving fast…say a murder…then finding the hero a few chapters in is okay and it doesn’t bother me.

But when they do, it better be with a bang.  I want sparks the minute they walk on scene together. 

I finished up Love on the Line by DeeAnne Gist. When her hero,who’s working undercover as a telephone repairman, meets the heroine, the switchboard operator, sparks fly. He is demanding and she’s a woman who doesn’t want to be told what to do or what to hand over (a key and a desk) to a man. The attraction is there, but the attitude is off the charts. And it sold me.  The other 2 books I read have wonderful introductions as well, but for sake of time I chose the last book I read of hers.

In Save the Date, (another book I just finished) by Jenny B. Jones, the hero was mean to the heroine in the past and she hasn’t forgotten, but she can’t deny that he seems different and it helps that he’s delicious to look at it! The witty, and super sarcastic, banter between the two right off the bat…sold me! 

When there’s ZERO tension between two characters–when they’re both nice to each other but otherwise unavailable, nothing moves in me. It’s boring. Sadly, I have read a few books where the beginning is much like this. Some I’ve pushed through simply because I hate not to finish a book. A couple picked up about halfway (but really, shouldn’t we start off that way between two characters?) and the others never did pick up and as bad as I hated it, I dropped the books. But I don’t want to talk about books that failed, and honestly, it’s not like I’ve read dozens that have. So…

What are some of your favorite “meeting” scenes in books? Share the scene or just the book and author if you’re in a hurry. What was it about their first encounter that hooked you?