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Conflicting and Compelling
on December 20, 2013
First Impression ...A story about a woman who falls in love with her high school crush-turn rock star. I'm in.
The Story... Twenty years after he became her crush, Alyssa gets the chance to interview rock star Michael Day for her magazine when he returns to his home town. Instant chemistry sparks between the two. Good news, considering Alyssa gets to live her long-time fantasy. Bad news, considering Michael is on a break from his marriage and considering divorce. The attraction is intense, and won't be denied. Michael and Alyssa must struggle through the difficulties of ending a marriage, and beginning something new, all in the media spotlight.
The Characters ... I've struggled with this, and have had a hard time reconciling being objective, and my personal thoughts on Alyssa and Michael's actions. Alyssa and Michael were both likable enough characters, considering their actions. I get that they shared an instant chemistry, but being a wife myself, I'm a hard sell on the cheating part. Yes, I got that Michael's marriage was by all intents over, but his wife didn't know that. And even though she was portrayed as a shrew, I felt more sorry for her than anyone else. I've kind of beaten myself up over my feelings for Michael and Alyssa, but then realized that I have read books in which I've felt more empathy for the cheater. I could feel what drove that character to the actions. I can say from an objective standpoint that it makes for a very interesting story. But from a personal angle, I was never on the either main character's side. Feeling so conflicted makes it difficult to review, but also shows that it was a story that made me think.
The Writing .... Was nice and easy. I will say that the first half of the plot felt rushed. Michael and Alyssa reconnected, began their relationship, and fell in love in the span of under two weeks (I think). I know it's possible, sixteen years ago my friend has married a guy she knew six days, they are still married. I was told it was there, but I didn't feel this intense bond that wouldn't be denied. Besides that, the story is really sweet. And the dual point-of-view provided insight into Michael's life and experiences in his marriage, along with Alyssa's long-held feelings for him. I mean, who among us never dreamed about meeting and falling in love with a famous rocker? So that part, I really enjoyed. It's like a great wish-fulfillment for the teenager in all of us. Besides the whole "wife" bit.
Could I Put Going Home Again Down? ... Because of the nice, fast pace, I never struggled with finishing. I wasn't consumed, but I was curious how it would all go down.
In the End ... I enjoyed Going Home Again, though I struggled with Alyssa and Michael's actions. It took me back to a time when Jordan Knight was my #1 guy, and that's never a bad thing.
I slid my fingers into her hair and let my thumbs caress her face as I kissed her again. She fell into me and we held each other tighter. Something about the cold rain drenching us and the warmth of her body next to mine as we literally kissed and made up, made me realize this was one of those moments I was going to remember for the rest of my life. And I silently thanked God once again for bringing Alyssa into my life.