Dorothy Garlock has written more than 50 novels and sold over 15 million copies (according to press notes). After reading her latest The Nearness Of You (Grand Central Publishing; in stores Tuesday July 11) I can understand why. It’s a well-written romance about a sheltered 21 year old girl finding love and declaring her independence.
In 1937 six year old Lily Denton had her live suddenly change when her mom died suddenly. Her over-protective dad was left to raise her in their small New York city town. Now at age 21 Lily’s dad is still being over-protective. Fed up with her small town life she and her best friend have decided to run away to New York City. As they leave town Lily can’t do it and ends up staying.
She returns to her job at the library with her overbearing boss. Her dad is the Mayor of the city. Her other best friend is Garrett, she grew up with him since they were kids. He’s secretly in love with her and is trying to work up the nerve to tell her. With the big Fall Festival coming up, he thinks this might be the time to finally tell her.
Meanwhile in New York City Life Magazine photographer Boone Tatum is getting in trouble trying to get a photo for the magazine. He’s arrested and bailed out by the magazine. As punishment he’s assigned to cover the festival and take lots of pictures with a young writer named Clive (who is nice enough but Boone finds him annoying). Boone finds this assignment beneath him but it’s this or the unemployment line. Also in town is Randall and Leo, two criminals who plan to rob the local bank on Halloween during the festival.
Randall runs into Lily and is smitten with her as does Boone who takes her picture (and also Randall’s as he is behind her). She’s mad that he suddenly took her picture. Boone decides he wants to get know Lily better and asks her out. She’s smitten with him as well. They have a good time and decide to go out again. They both are falling in love and have never felt like this before. Lily’s dad is not happy about this. Lily finally has it out with her dad and says she’s old enough to live her life.
They fall in love and make plans for the future. What they don’t know is trouble is right around the corner with Randall and Leo and soon things turn deadly and their future could be in doubt.
A thoroughly enjoyable romance that is perfect for the beach or pool reading. Having never read a Dorothy book before I can say I am looking forward to reading more of her books in the future.