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PJV Quickie: I always know when I crack open a Julie James book that I’m going to get a great story with complex characters and just the right amount of romantic tension.  Julie James is an auto-buy author for me and her books are always worth the wait; Suddenly One Summer did not disappoint.  

Review:
Victoria Slade is determined not to ever have a serious relationship or get married.  As a divorce attorney, she’s seen the ugly side of marriage on too many occasions to ever want to go there herself. A break-in in her home causes her to temporarily rent an apartment until she can move into her new condo, and her new next-door neighbor seems to have a string of ladies at his door, which is fine because she is totally not interested in someone who’s an obvious player.

Ford Dixon is an investigative journalist who lives in the apartment next to Victoria’s.  He’s happy with his job and his life, he’s got friends and he dates, but his best friends are starting to get married and do ‘couple things’.  He’s certainly not interested in his new neighbor, who’s gorgeous but seems kind of unfriendly.  Ford’s sister Nicole is a new mom, and she’s recently confided in him that she’s overwhelmed by being a single mom but she doesn’t know anything about the baby’s father except his name.

When Victoria finds Nicole at Ford’s door is in tears with a baby, she offers to let her into her apartment to wait for Ford.  As they talk about Nicole’s situation, Victoria offers her attorney services to file for child support.  When Nicole tells Ford about Victoria’s offer, he insists on using his investigative skills to hunt down the baby’s father.  As they work together to find the baby’s father, they both realize that maybe first impressions are not reliable… but Victoria has issues stemming not only from her profession, but also her childhood, that may may ruin things between them before they can get very far.

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As I said in my PJV Quickie, I love Julie James’ books, so it’s not surprising that I really enjoyed Suddenly One Summer.  Three words that come to mind: smart, sexy, fun.  Reading Victoria and Ford getting to know each other and rethinking their first impressions of each other really worked for me.    Their chemistry was good and I love a good ‘enemies to lovers’ story.  I liked the ‘finding the baby’s father’ plot and thought that it was a good way to draw them together.  There was no clear-cut villain in the story, no outside influence trying to keep them apart, and that was refreshing to read.  Although I wish there had been more lawyer action like we’ve seen in previous books by Ms. James, I still devoured Suddenly One Summer in a few days.  Now that I’ve finished it, I’m sad I have to wait a whole year for her next book.

I’d also like to point out that Victoria had some PTSD issues that I  thought Ms. James handled very well. Mental health issues are still considered ‘abnormal’ or ‘weird’ by many people in this day and age, and Ms. James wrote a very positive focus on the importance of going to therapy and not just ignoring your problems.

Recommendations:
If you’re already a Julie James fan, you’ll enjoy Suddenly One Summer.  If you’re a fan of Contemporary romance, definitely give Julie James a try – Suddenly One Summer is a good stand-alone if you’re not looking for a series.

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About the Book

I received this book for free from Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Suddenly One Summer by Julie James #Review

Suddenly One Summer by Julie James

Published by Jove, Penguin on June 2, 2015
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance
Source: Publisher
4 Stars

From the New York Times bestselling author of It Happened One Wedding comes a novel about a man and a woman whose summer is about to get very, very steamy…

Divorce lawyer Victoria Slade has seen enough unhappy endings to swear off marriage forever. That doesn't mean she's opposed to casual dating—just not with her cocky new neighbor, who is as gorgeous and tempting as he is off-limits. But once she agrees to take on his sister's case, she's as determined to win as ever—even if that means teaming up with Ford…

Investigative journalist Ford Dixon is bent on finding the man who got his sister pregnant and left her high and dry. He's willing to partner with Victoria, despite the fact that the beautiful brunette gets under his skin like no other woman. He might not be looking to settle down, but there's no denying the scorching attraction between them. Still, the more time he spends with Victoria, the more he realizes that the one woman as skeptical about love as he is might be the only woman he could really fall for…