LEARNING TO LOVE
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Release Date: June 14th 2016
Publisher: Choc Lit
Sometimes help comes from the most unlikely places …
Living in a small village like Hibberton, it’s expected that your neighbours help you in a time of need. But when Andrea Kelly’s house burns down, taking
all her earthly possessions with it, it’s the distant and aloof Doctor David Adams – the person she would least expect – who opens his door not just to her, but to her three kids and slightly dotty elderly mother as well.
Andrea needs all the help she can get, dealing with aftermath of the fire and in the suspicious absence of her husband, Jonathan. But, as she gets to know David and his troubled son, Jake, she begins to realise that maybe they need her help as much as she needs theirs …
Previously released by the author. Revised, edited and republished by Choc Lit in June 2016.
I don’t know how you feel, David, do I? I don’t know you, other than what you’ve told me.’
David looked at her levelly. ‘The truth.’
‘The truth?’ Andrea was really incredulous now. ‘Apart from the one or two inconsequential little things you forgot to tell me? Or was it more than that, David? Three? Four? A hundred?’
‘Two! Twice. Bloody hell, Andrea …’
And that made it all right? She forced back the tears she desperately didn’t want to cry in front of him, again. ‘And I thought Jonathan was being devious. You take the biscuit, David, you really do.’ Shaking her head, Andrea moved to walk past him.
‘I’m nothing like Jonathan, Andrea,’ David said quietly. ‘I care about you.’
Andrea turned back. ‘And Jonathan doesn’t?’ She knew in her heart that her relationship had been floundering long before the fire that had blown her world apart, before David … She didn’t believe Jonathan’s tale about why he hadn’t been able to contact her any more than his claim to have found Dougal in the park. He’d been piling lie on top of lie since that dreadful night, and she would tackle him. Right now, though, she was more interested in what lies this man might concoct to extract himself from his mess.
‘Did he tell you the assessors had been?’
‘I haven’t had a chance to speak to him yet.’ Andrea walked on.
‘He’s hiding something, Andrea,’ David called after her. ‘I’m not sure what, but the fire, his preoccupation with Dee’s mental state, his story … It just doesn’t add up.’
Disbelieving, Andrea whirled around. ‘You’ll stop at nothing, will you? You paint yourself as a poor wounded hero, torn apart by grief and guilt and the havoc you created, and then you have the nerve to point out other people’s failings? Why?’
‘Andrea, I … I don’t know.’ David shrugged hopelessly. ‘I just want you to be careful, that’s—’
‘I mean, I’m no great catch, am I?’ Andrea went on, her fury growing. ‘Was what just happened between us another one of your mistakes, is that it?’
‘No!’ David fixed angry eyes on hers. ‘Dammit, Andrea I do care about you. I—’
‘I’m going.’ Andrea turned away.
‘Andrea, don’t.’ David caught her arm. ‘Please. The kids …’
‘Don’t you dare, David,’ Andrea warned him angrily. ‘Don’t you dare try to manipulate me through my children!’
‘They’re getting ready for bed, Andrea. There’s no point in upsetting them tonight.’
‘Me upsetting them?’ Andrea was flabbergasted.
‘Jake …’ David swallowed. ‘Give me a chance to speak to him, Andrea. Please, I’m begging you.’
Andrea felt her heart break inside her afresh, for Jake, for David, too, who was going to have to live with the devastating consequences of his actions; for Sally, who would surely need her friendship now, but which this man had made impossible. For herself.
‘Stay,’ David implored. ‘Please? For tonight, at least.’
Andrea studied his face, saw the desperation in his eyes; eyes where so many conflicting emotions played out. How little did she really know him? She could have loved him. Did, still. Yet hated him.
‘For Jake’s sake,’ she said, dropping her gaze to his hand still on her arm.
Relief flooding his face, David released his hold. ‘Thank you,’ he said, closing his eyes.
LEARNING TO LOVE – MY REVIEW
Well what can you say? Sheryl never disappoints. She writes the kind of stories you would like to go on for ever. She’s a great observer. No one dimensional characters here; hers come with strengths, weaknesses and plenty of emotional baggage. And this, I’m sure is why it’s so very easy to empathise with them.
Dr David Adams, struggles with his grief over the loss of his wife and unborn child. He also faces a daily challenge, trying to heal the great emotional gulf between himself and his ten year old son Jake. Teacher Andrea Kelly is going through a rough patch with partner Jonathan Eden. Work pressures and stressful family situations are taking their toll.
When Andrea’s house catches fire David rescues her children and in the absence of her partner Jonathan offers her shelter until she sorts herself out.
Andrea is a cross between Wonder Woman and Mother Theresa in the way she copes so patiently with two teenagers, a toddler and her forgetful mother Dee, a woman in the early stages of dementia. David is a kind and honourable man putting himself out to help this family in need. Inevitably the two soon become attracted to each other but when Jonathan suddenly turns up and Andrea’s friend Sally drops a huge bombshell concerning David you really are left wondering ‘What happens next?’
I loved everything about this book. It wasn’t simply a romance. There was humour and drama as well. In fact everything we’ve come to associate with Sheryl’s writing. A totally brilliant read full of believable characters and true to life situations.
I would like to thank Brook Cottage Books for a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
Amazon Link: http://lrd.to/Learning-To-Love
ABOUT SHERYL BROWNE
Heartache, humour, love, loss & betrayal, Sheryl Browne brings you sassy, sexy, heart-wrenching fiction. A member of the Crime Writers’ Association, Romantic Novelists’ Association and shortlisted for the Best Romantic e-book Love Stories Award 2015, Sheryl has several books published and two short stories in Birmingham City University anthologies, where she completed her MA in Creative Writing.
Recommended to the publisher by the WH Smith Travel fiction buyer, Sheryl’s contemporary fiction comes to you from award winning Choc Lit.
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