Jennifer Johnson's Rescue Me is everything a good read should be-interesting, poignant, filled with enough conflict to keep the reader engaged, and peppered with sparkling dialogue. Add two needy protagonists, a cute little boy, quirky yet charming secondary characters, a small town in Mississippi, and you have a recipe for success.
Ms. Johnson delivers in this story about newly divorced mom, Amy Mann, who returns to her home town and parents, broke, deeply in debt, and with a huge chip on her slim shoulders. Enter fire captain Riley Pennimon, whose baggage is carried on the inside. Riley forms a friendship with Amy's son Toby, which is a source of trouble for Amy, who feels she must single-handedly dig herself out of her troubles without any help from outsiders. The fact that Riley and Toby become fast friends, and her retired fire chief father, Lon, tries to thrust the two together, is a source of added consternation for Amy. She's done with men, thank you very much. And she has zero sex drive-at least that's what she thinks, until the chemistry between her and the handsome fire captain ignites a blaze between them.
Amy is so resentful of receiving help, at times I wanted to shake her, but just when she seemed to go overboard, author Johnson tossed in a perfectly acceptable reason for her behavior. Riley seems every woman's dream man, but his problems go much deeper-a failed marriage, a stillborn son, and more which I won't reveal in this review. How these two manage to sort out their problems makes Rescue Me a joy to read. While there's no consummated sex, the sexual tension fairly sizzles throughout much of the book.
Do yourself a favor and pick up a copy of Rescue Me, another fine book from Turquoise Morning Press. Ms. Johnson, we're anxiously awaiting your next release.
on September 15, 2010
I found this story to be a entertaining read. The characters were warm, funny and realistic. Growing up in small town Georgia, I think the author captured the essence of southern charm without veering into stereotype territory. The plot involved real life dilemmas and the characters handled situations in a thoughtful and believable manner. This author delivers romance with a great sense of humor I look forward to reading more of her stories.
on December 19, 2012
I can definitively say I LOVE LOVE LOVE Rescue Me. I loved Amy and Toby and the Penny Man! And Granny Delphia! God I love her! I honestly can't count how many times I was moved to tears of heartache for Amy's situation and for Riley's past sorrows. I also can't tell you how many times I literally laughed out loud- the nutcracker, the fancy women bit Amy's father said, and the southern charm of real life and real people that Jennifer Johnson brings to life on the page. I'm honored and humbled to know such a talented author who doesn't just tell a story, but also makes me feel like I'm right there and I know these people and share in their sadness and their joy.
on April 13, 2011
I love these characters. They are people I can relate to and would like to know in real life. I especially liked that, even the worst chapter of her life, the heroine doesn't just give up. In her weakness, she finds great strength. Character development makes Ms. Johnson's novels a cut above the "typical" romance novel. Enjoy!
on November 15, 2011
Review by Molly: Jennifer Johnson is my new favorite author! I LOVE her writing skills. She blends lots of humor, real life issues, plenty of romance and one rockin' cast of characters to create an instantly gripping and engaging novel.
Rescue Me. I just LOVE that title. Not only that, I loved Amy, Riley, and sweet little Toby. They truly worked their way into my heart and I won't soon forget them. Amy's issues are very real to life, being divorced and a single mom to a 7 year old son. She leaves her ex behind in Texas and heads back to Mississippi to start over with their son. She's bound and determined to do what it takes to get back on her feet, and be done with men.
Enter Riley. One HOT firefighter determined to be a best friend to her sweet innocent son, trying to make up for his past and a tragedy he dealt with. But, stubborn Amy butts heads with Riley on more than one occasion, even as the sparks are flying...sparks she's denying. The one question that lies between them is this: can they RESCUE each other and move on from their past?
With just enough passion blended with just enough lightheartedness, Jennifer Johnson has truly created a novel that I think is stellar. I felt Riley's pain, I felt Amy's turmoil, and I felt sweet little Toby's hopefulness. I finished this novel in less than two days, and stayed up late into the night reading to find out what happened between Amy and Riley. I won't spoil it for you, so I will just say that you NEED to get a copy of this awesome 4 star novel. You won't be disappointed and you'll quickly become a Jennifer Johnson fan, hoping for more amazing work!
Quote: "I think she could do serious damage with that nut cracker, Chief."
on October 21, 2011
This is a sweet, easy, happy ending, romance read.
Amy has sworn off men after a bad experience getting pregnant and then married too young to an unfaithful, irresponsible jerk. (Okay she doesn't call him that directly but if the shoe fits....) She is glad her marriage gave her Toby but now she wants to have some control over her own life even if she has to struggle to get her life together. She is determined to stand up for herself and manage on her own. She is glad to move home to get the help of her parents but she doesn't want them, or anyone else, to give her money or solve her problems for her. She especially doesn't want a handsome firefighter paying her bills and trying to direct her life.
Riley sees a beautiful woman and wonderful child when he meets Amy and her son, Toby. He doesn't set out to "rescue her" but he can't help but want to make her burden easier. He also loves spending time with Toby who reminds him of his own son who died at childbirth.
Riley is a fire Captain and pretty much a take charge guy. Clearly he and Amy knock heads and he has to battle to get past her defenses. Riley is awfully sweet and set on winning Amy if only he can figure out a way to get her to accept all that he has to offer, not just financially but emotionally too.
The story flows nicely and the author does a nice job developing these characters as real to life, flaws included. Amy is very stubborn but her reactions could be considered really honest in light of her history. Riley is such a gentleman but he bumbles a few steps along the way. And Toby is an exuberant seven year old boy who is quickly drawn to the warmth and friendship that Riley offers.
I rather expected more difficulties with the ex-husband but it was okay that he was mostly out of the picture after unexpectedly exerting some visitation rights. He was only a peripheral character.
The dialogue is fun and the story entertaining with conflict and a warm romance. Riley plays a mandolin and I enjoyed that the author used a song that he wrote for Amy to express the message of the story. When you need a break from paranormal or thriller suspense this would be a nice book to snag for a quick sweet read. I would be please to read more novels by this author.
on February 4, 2011
Jennifer Johnson's Rescue Me deals with a woman trying to rebuild her life after a devastating divorce. Stubborn and fiercely protective of her young son, Amy Mann is determined to stand on her own two feet and live life on her terms. Firefighter Riley Pennimon is a classic knight in grimy firefighting gear. He falls in love with Amy's son first, but deeper feelings for the boy's prickly mother soon develop.
I loved the small town southern flavor of this book, but even more, I found Amy's story to be both realistic and moving. The fallout from Amy's failed marriage makes her a little blind to the inherent good in people. It takes her a while to learn to trust again and to find enough confidence in herself to be able to accept the help her friends and neighbors offer.
Ms. Johnson's dialogue and quirky humor make Rescue Me a highly entertaining read!