- Title: Along Came Trouble
- Author: Ruthie Knox
- Series: Camelot, Book 2
- Genre(s): Contemporary
- Publisher: Loveswept, February 2013
- Source: NetGalley ($2.99 ebook)
- Length: 121 pages
- Trope(s): Uptight Single Mother, Ex-Army Hero, Insta-Lust, Evil Ex, Big Misunderstandings
- Quick blurb: A single mother’s tightly-ordered life is disrupted when her pop-star brother insists on assigning her a security guard.
- Quick review: More great characterization and smoking-hot chemistry, but the short timeframe and small-town antics got in the way of the relationship-building.
- Grade: B
Get a grip, she told herself, but her libido had no claws, and the situation was slippery — a bizarre combination of socially awkward and inconveniently arousing.
So. I first attempted just a One-Quote Review because I’m lazy, but this book made me have THOUGHTS. And FEELINGS.
My THOUGHTS primarily centered around the realization that I identified with heroine Ellen. A LOT. While other reviewers labelled Ellen as “difficult” and bemoaned her resistance to going Full Damsel-In-Distress, I just wanted to smack Caleb upside the head and say, “DUDE. She’s a single mother with an abusive, unstable ex. And it’s only been a week. BACK THE FUCK OFF.”
Or, as Ellen reminds herself soon after she first meets Caleb:
She had to be on her guard against that feeling, to remain wary of reassigning agency from herself to a man. Be sufficient. That was the lesson of her relationship with Richard, the conclusion that she’d drawn from the first twenty-seven years of her life.
I have a lot more THOUGHTS about this subject, but it’s all TMI personal whining, so you’ll just have to get me drunk at RT to find out the rest.
My FEELINGS primarily centered around my annoyance with all the flaky secondary characters. One of the reasons I loved Knox’s first two books, and the novella that introduced this series, was the intimate atmosphere of the relationship-building, with the focus solely on the complex internal conflicts and angsty backstories of the main characters.
While there are some lovely moments of that in Along Came Trouble…
She couldn’t linger here with him, couldn’t let him make love to her this way. She needed him selfish and wild. Unimportant. Disposable.
…I felt the influx of siblings and in-laws and neighbors and paparazzi and cops and naked grandmothers and whatnot was just too much, and not what I expected from Knox. The kookiness felt forced, as if Camelot needed to meet all the criteria for a Standard Rom-Com Small-Town Setting. Although…after reading the author’s note, I am grateful the idiot pop-star brother was relegated to a supporting role.
But, in the end, of course, Knox’s writing makes all that nearly irrelevant…
It was seductive, feeling things. She’d forgotten.
…so now I’ll just shut up and keep reading.