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Just Like Heaven Mass Market Paperback – May 31, 2011
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From the Back Cover
Honoria Smythe-Smith is:A) a really bad violinist
B) still miffed at being nicknamed "Bug" as a child
C) not in love with her older brother's best friend
D) all of the above
Marcus Holroyd is:A) the Earl of Chatteris
B) regrettably prone to sprained ankles
C) not in love with his best friend's younger sister
D) all of the above
Together they:A) eat quite a bit of chocolate cake
B) survive a deadly fever and the world's worst musical performance
C) fall quite desperately in love
It's Julia Quinn at her best, so you know the answer is . . .
D) all of the above
About the Author
Julia Quinn is the New York Times bestselling author of twenty-five novels for Avon Books, and one of only sixteen authors ever to be inducted in the Romance Writers of America Hall of Fame. She lives in the Pacific Northwest with her family.
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Top Customer Reviews
I was pleasantly surprised and somewhat relieved that I ended up enjoying it. I liked the simplicity of the book and the hero and heroine are very likable; one thing I love about Julia Quinn books is that her heroines are always women whom I think would be nice to have as friends. However the lack of any real spark made it not much of a keeper for me. When I really love a romance, I end the book with a ridiculously stupid grin on my face that doesn't go away for hours; here, that didn't happen.
It did have some strong aspects, while also missing those that we - or at least I - often bemoan in romance book:
- There was no contrived subplot - mystery, mass-murdering or otherwise
- There is not instant lust; they've known each other since childhood and have considered one another practical brother and sister
- There are no love interests thrown in for the sole purpose of dragging the plot out and making you squirm in your seat - or couch or bed - and there were no hated Big Misunderstandings
- The book was really focused on the two main characters, Honoria and Marcus
- One really gets the sense that they *would* make a lovely couple and have a lot of what the other needs
So why the 3 stars? I was actually torn between 3 and 3.Read more ›
The book's blurb reveals who falls for whom, the fun is in how they get there. Set in early 1800's England, we're immediately introduced to Marcus, a lonely, motherless, only child. As is tradition, his father sends him off to an elite boarding school where he is befriended by Daniel, an outgoing classmate. Marcus gains not only a best friend, but the family he never had, including Daniel's pesky little sister, Honoria.
Pan forward 15 years. Marcus promised Daniel before he left London, that he'd watch over Honoria and ensure her male suitors were worthy. Unfortunately for Honoria, no one was good enough; Marcus, the powerful Earl with brooding eyes, effectively secured her single status.
Twenty-one and desperate, Honoria concocts a "hairbrained" plan to gain the attention of a particular young man and sets in motion a series of events that cause her and Marcus to really see each other for the first time. Unsure of the other's feelings, they dance around each other until the interference of a crafty old broad (Marcus's great-great Aunt) brings the situation to a head.
I loved the individuality of the characters voices. I appreciated Honoria's strength; she is no shrinking violet! The best part? Some of the dialog and individual points of view had me laughing out loud.
Just Like Heaven is romantic, witty and charming - the perfect vehicle to escape life for a few hours.
While Ms. Quinn's early books were unique because they were funny, light and delightful, I think she has taken this attempt at style too far. In the past several books (this one no exception), she immerses her characters in a babble of inner monologue, rather than incorporating true, character-building dialogue. Here is an example:
"He liked carrots. Although orange had never really
been one of his favorite colors. He'd always found
it a little jarring. It seemed to pop up when he
didn't expect it, and he preferred his life without
This book is filled with non-sequiturs like that. Perhaps ONE would have been mildly amusing, but instead they are used as filler. Take them out and this book would have far, far shorter. Here's another example:
"He nodded and ate some more. Or rather, drank some
more. Did one eat soup or drink it? And more to the
point, could he get some cheese to melt on top?"
Again, by itself it might be cute. Unfortunately, all of this fluff leads to a book that is devoid of character- and relationship-building. The hero and heroine have very little chemistry. Most of the book takes place within the context of a convalescence, so there is precious little physical passion, and the one scene at the end of the book feels forced and awkward, like Ms. Quinn was contractually obligated to put a sex scene in. It does not feel like the consummation of a great love or even great passion.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This story doesn't have the energy of some of Julia Quinn's other works, but it is still good. The part about Marcus injury is a different twist. Read morePublished 2 days ago by Catherine. Heathcliff
Great story and love Julia Quinn's sense of humor. Everyone one of her books makes me laugh out loud. I absolutely love the Smyth-Smith musical......More!!!!!Published 3 days ago by Sandi Orth
Okay, if there is one type of romance I LOVE it's when someone falls of their sibling's friend. Like, they've known each other since they were kids and there was no love between... Read morePublished 15 days ago by Kailia Sage
Julia Quinn always gives us a great read! Waiting for next book in the series. Love reading all stories about historical fiction.Published 2 months ago by Marianne Reaves
I love this.Funny,light hearted. I really do not know why everyone is crazy about the Bridgertons.I actually prefer the Smythe-Smith books.Published 2 months ago by esther madamidola
Purchased this as an Audible audiobook. Narrator was excellent. However, the story is a mass of tangled loose ends tied in a knot just sufficient to hang gratuitous sex scenes... Read morePublished 2 months ago by GMALR
What happens when you dig a fake mole hole to get your foot trapped in so that you can grab the attention of an eligible bachelor, but instead your childhood friend steps in it and... Read morePublished 3 months ago by Angie
This book surprised me in its lack of story and incessantly drawn-out, silly, and non-sensical dialogue. Read morePublished 3 months ago by C. A.