Novella Review: Love in the Shadows by Barbara Wallace

 

Love in the Shadows features Charlie’s mysterious owner, the billionaire Mr B, and Jenny, a woman who has lost the ability to trust in love.  She’s been running from her past and has settled in Chandler’s Cove, making friends with Mia, Marney, and Gabby.  A dedicated school teacher, she has worked hard to remake herself, and she’s content with her friends and her new life.  That is, until she meets Nick.  Suddenly she’s confronted with a riot of emotions, which has her running scared and leaves Nick with confirmation that he is truly a hideous monster.

Nick was seriously burned in an accident that left him disfigured and alone.  His fiancée took one look at him and declared that he was no longer husband material and that no one could ever love him.  When Megan walked out on him, she also left Charlie, the puppy she insisted on purchasing.  Like with Nick, she became bored with Charlie,  and left the two of them in her dust.  Best thing that ever happened to either of them!

I thought that the novella length hurt this story.  Both Nick and Jenny are suffering from self-revulsion, and both of them are hiding themselves from the rest of the world.  Nick lurks in darkened rooms, avoiding contact with anyone other than Cyrus, his butler, and Jenny has stamped out her former self, becoming someone she feels is capable of respect. They both guard their true selves from everyone else, even their closest friends.  When Jenny storms into Nick’s mansion, insisting he make good on Charlie’s errant behavior, the sparks fly.  She ends up leaving in a huff, with Charlie firmly in tow, and her real self precariously near the surface.

After Jenny discovers why Nick is always hiding in the shadows, she attempts to coax him out.  While I loved his reaction to her efforts to draw him into the light, I wasn’t convinced by the sudden change in either of them, but this was due mainly to the abbreviated length of their courtship.  They were both such interesting, damaged characters that I would have enjoyed learning more about them. 

Love in the Shadows wraps up the Billionaire Matchmaker series, though reading order isn’t a requirement for any of the novellas.  All of the stories work as stand alones, though it’s more fun to read them all, and to learn about all of the couples Charlie nudges together.

ABOUT LOVE IN THE SHADOWS

Title: Love in the Shadows
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Author: Barbara Wallace
Publisher: Entangled Indulgence
Ebook: 80 Pages
Release Date: March 28, 2014
ISBN: 978-1622665068
Amazon | Barnes and Noble

Can a feisty four-legged matchmaker help four best friends find the romance of their dreams?

Jenny is a woman on a mission – she’ll even resort to dognapping to make her point! But can she teach a reclusive, emotionally-wounded tycoon that love heals all things?

AMAZON * BARNES & NOBLE