Charming Memory by EL Bossert is a wonderful, feel-good romance that is as comforting as a favorite throw blanket and a fresh batch of homemade brownies. This is the type of story that I crave every so often to block out all the nonsense going on in the world. Feel free to skip to the end of this review and purchase this book right now.
Well-known actress, Jamie Jordan spends her down time in her quiet hometown of Crestwood with her four-year-old son, Max. Here, she doesn’t have to worry about constant scrutiny from the paparazzi and she can concentrate on her son. One morning, Max wanders away from the park and straight into the path of an oncoming delivery truck. At the last minute a complete stranger swoops in and saves him. Max escapes with just a minor injury to his hand, but the mystery hero is knocked unconscious and sent to the hospital with serious injuries. When she regains consciousness, she can’t remember anything about the past including her name.
Jamie is so grateful to the stranger who her son has named “Boo”, that she invites her to stay at her house to recuperate while Jamie’s family and friends search for Boo’s true identity and family. Boo finally remembers one detail – a wife named Maria Garcia. Boo and Jaime try to cope with their growing attraction, but the paparazzi begin to suspect Jamie has a new woman in her life.
Neither woman wants to betray a relationship, but is Boo actually still married? Is she available for romance and can she and Jamie keep things platonic while they search for all the answers?
Both Jamie and Boo are truly enchanting characters. They are equally gentle, warm and resilient. Neither falls into the trap that I often see in typical romances where one or both of them make blatantly silly decisions that derail their relationship. If anything, they are so concerned with the other’s wellbeing that they take things slowly out of respect and kindness. I can’t say how much I admired and loved both of these women.
Jamie is a mother first. True, she is a well known and sought after actress, but she makes sure that Max is her top priority. Family is also important to her and she keeps her sister, parents, and friends close. Because she cherishes her family so much, she is reluctant to reveal to Boo who she is. For Jamie, part of her journey is learning to trust that someone’s affections are for her and not for her trappings.
Boo has jumped to the top of my list of favorite romantic leads (insert dreamy sigh). She is like Mary Poppins, practically perfect in every way. She is gallant, humble, and able to see the humor in her circumstance. Her relationship with Max is just precious and her quiet strength and courage make her oh so sexy. It’s delightful to see how innocently Boo brings out the awkward teenager in Jamie and equally fun to watch Jamie struggle with suppressing her physical desire for Boo. It made me wonder if it was the amnesia that stripped all artifice from Boo’s personality, but I think that her innate goodness is something that belies her temporary medical condition.
The Writing Style
This story moves at the perfect pace. The plot is driven by the need to find out Boo’s true identity, yet nothing seems rushed. As clues are revealed the sense of urgency picks up, and the same goes for the slow burn of attraction between Jamie and Boo. There are several moments when that first kiss almost happens, but Bossert artfully puts it off which left me just as frustrated as Jamie and Boo.
Bossert avoids using flowery, overly saccharine language yet still creates a heavenly love story. What I appreciated most was her ability to convey the personality of each woman by showing me glimpses of their true natures rather than just telling me about them. As the saying goes, actions speak louder than words and it’s through Jamie and Boo’s acts that I saw how each of them walk in dignity and strength.
For me, everything about this book is a pro. E-Ver-Y-Thing. It has two great female leads, an adorable child, a dog who acts more like a person, and a yummy love scene.
Nothing. Nothing at all.
This book is exactly what I want in a romance. I want to believe that true love exists. I want to see two women honoring and cherishing each other. I want to see them overcome adversity. I want to see them in the little moments that are ordinary and not artificially dramatic. This book celebrates true love and the idea that family can be made up of the people we choose. I would love to track down E L Bossert and personally thank her for this charming romance, but then I certainly wouldn’t want to tarnish things by earning a restraining order in the process.
Excerpt from Charming Memory by EL Bossert
“I guess I don’t know if I have kids. I don’t know who is out there looking for me.” Boo wistfully smiled at Max, before asking Jamie, “Are you married?”
“No, I’m not. Max and work keep me busy. And I’m surrounded by family.”
“Sorry if that was too personal. I seem to be a little preoccupied with other people’s families while I wait for mine to show up.”
Jamie reached out, squeezing Boo’s hand with hers. She could feel the worn callouses on the upper palms of Boo’s large hand. Although it was an innocent gesture of compassion, when Jamie removed her hand from Boo’s, she could still feel the warmth of their touch.
“I’m sure you have a family and it’s just a matter of time before we find them for you.” Jamie paused. “I’m sorry. That sounded co cliché. But I really do believe we will find them. Until then, Max and I are your family.” Jamie’s words were not a mere offer, but a declaration.
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Bits and Bobs
- ISBN number: 9781718861985
E L Bossert Online
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