REVIEW: Barefoot in the Rain by Roxanne St. Claire
For a feel-good story full of emotion, Jocelyn and Will’s journey to a happy-ever-after is filled with secrets from their past waiting to be revealed. If you love a full cast of great friends supporting each other through a crisis with laughter and tears, then this novel is definitely for you.
Jocelyn Bloom, thirty-something girl-next-door, is all grown up and a life coach to the rich and famous in Los Angeles. Will Palmer, minor league baseball player, is working as a carpenter at an up-and-coming resort on Mimosa Key, while waiting on a second chance at his baseball career. Fifteen years ago, the night Will told Jocelyn that he loved her, seems like a lifetime ago, and yet, it seems like yesterday if the fresh pain of love lost is considered.
The man who caused their break-up, in more ways than Will knows, is also Jocelyn’s father, now a helpless, aging man living next door, who remembers very little of his past. Plagued with Alzheimer’s, Guy Bloom has earned Will’s compassion and friendship.
Involved in a scandal with one of her famous clients, Jocelyn needs somewhere to hide from the media until the paparazzi forgets about her. Logically, Mimosa Key, where she grew up, is the destination, since Jocelyn’s college roommate has a secluded place for her to stay. Jocelyn doesn’t expect to find her love from the past acting like her estranged father’s best buddy, nor a father who has lost all memory of her to Alzheimer’s.
Of course, Tessa and Zoe have to join Lacey in supporting Jocelyn through a crisis. That’s what friends do, but can Jocelyn keep her secrets contained, when so many people who know her best surround her?
BAREFOOT IN THE RAIN is exquisitely staged so that the reader falls for all the characters, sometimes in sorrow, sometimes in anger, but mostly in laughter. Even though you should hate Guy Bloom as much as Jocelyn does, you can’t help but love the man he’s become. He engages Jocelyn’s friends too, so resistance may be futile for the woman who, at one time, was happy as daddy’s little girl. Will has also discovered Guy’s charm, but what he doesn’t realize is that Jocelyn has secrets that may keep her forever from his grasp, as well as from her father’s.
I couldn’t find anything not to like about this book. It made me laugh like a romantic comedy movie does, and yet, it still covers some very serious subjects that many of us may experience in our lifetime. The best part? It’s filled with realistic good friends, like the ones you’ve known for a lifetime, who can make you smile even when you’re at your lowest.
If you’re considering this book, you might want to read book one, BAREFOOT IN THE SAND, even though I wasn’t confused by missing it. I’m anxious to read more about these charming characters, so I’ll go backwards before the next book comes out. If you like to be teased, there’s a snippet of book three in the back of BAREFOOT IN THE RAIN, as well as a letter from Roxanne St. Claire describing a part of her life that was the seed that germinated book two. Don’t miss that tidbit because it’s an endearing story.
BAREFOOT IN THE RAIN is a laugh-out-loud, gasp-at-the-heartache, rollercoaster of love. Author Roxanne St. Claire orchestrates a full cast of characters, amongst a complicated story, jam-packed with emotion, encased with seamless flow. It’s brilliant, modern, sophisticated and yet, feels like coming home. I can’t wait for Zoe’s story in BAREFOOT IN THE SUN.
What’s on your mountain?