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Chasing Perfect (Fool's Gold, Book 1) Mass Market Paperback – April 27, 2010
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From Publishers Weekly
For her first Fool's Gold romance, Mallery (Hot on Her Heels) eschews her tried-and-true formula of a passionate heroine and arrogant alpha male hero linked by a tumultuous past, setting up two wary strangers instead. The mayor of Fool's Gold, Calif., is determined to match-make between Charity Jones, a city planner hired to create jobs that will keep the town's men from moving away, and Josh Golden, a professional cyclist and reputed womanizer. Charity, a veteran of romantic disaster, is skeptical of Josh, who's always surrounded by cute female fans. Josh, traumatized by a teammate's death and no longer able to race, feels too broken to maintain a relationship. The book brims with quick-witted, good-natured characters, and though Charity and Josh occasionally verge on blandness, their romance grows poignantly and with chemistry to spare. (May)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
About the Author
New York Times bestselling author Susan Mallery has entertained millions of readers with her witty and emotional stories about women. Publishers Weekly calls Susan’s prose “luscious and provocative,” and Booklist says “Novels don’t get much better than Mallery’s expert blend of emotional nuance, humor and superb storytelling.” Susan lives in Seattle with her husband and her tiny but intrepid toy poodle. Visit her at www.SusanMallery.com.
Top customer reviews
This book centers around Charity Jones who has been hired to be the new city planner. She is dealing with some abandonment issues and moved frequently has a child so she desperately wants to put down roots and settle down. She hasn't had any successful love relationships and wants to concentrate on settling in not getting involved with anyone. Josh Golden is Fool's Gold's golden boy. He's a professional cyclist who is a superstar, but he's retired after things went horribly wrong in the last race he was in. He has a reputation of being a real ladies man and all the women in town make no secret about wanting him. However, there is more to Josh then his persona as a famous cyclist.
Charity is immediately attracted to Josh but wants nothing to do with his famous lifestyle. Josh is attracted to Charity but knows he's in no position to get involved with anyone until he can put his life back together.
This is a sweet romance and is fairly predictable. The town is interesting and I enjoyed the side characters quite a bit. The romance is very slow moving and to be honest not a lot happens in this book. It wasn't particularly exciting and the connection between the two characters was just "meh". Not sure if I will read another one in this series or not.
I love the Fool's Gold series but I jumped in late and honestly have never gone back to read the first book in the series. Now I'm kicking myself for waiting so long because this book was the epitome of everything I love about this series.
Though references are made to Charity and Josh in the later books I never really felt like I knew them and I'll admit a cyclist hero didn't really get my heart beating fast so I put off reading this one. However, I ended up really enjoying both of them and the chemistry between them. It was also interesting to see Mayor Marsha before she became the all knowing/seeing character she is in later books. Seeing her vulnerability made me love her even more.
The story itself was a fun read and I devoured this book in one sitting. The only thing that knocked it from a 5 star to a 4.5 star is the resolution at the end was a little too pat for me. Charity's turn of heart came about way too suddenly for me and I honestly didn't really think she shouldn't have gotten as worked up as she did in the first place. Still it was nice seeing how everything started.
Josh and Charity's story was a good one. It was easy to get involved with the story from the beginning. Josh seemed like a pretty good guy and I really liked Charity. There were some parts of the story that weren't explained well which made me think there was a prequel? Or maybe those parts are to be explained in later books.
The part about why Josh cut off his relationship with the Hendrix family seemed so odd. If I had taken a child in and raised him as my own, that would have broken my heart. It would take a while to rebuild the trust that had been broken. It was never explained which made the book seem as though parts were missing.
But it's a good book worth a read. I have read the reviews on the second book in the series about Ethan Hendrix and Liz Sutton. They are not good. I don't plan to read that book and have skipped over it. I'm now readiing the fourth book although I think I will go back and read Pia's story.
I was very wrong. Although it didn't catch me right away, it wasn't very long from the first few pages that I began to get pulled in. Really hope that the rest of the series is just as interesting.
The challenge I had, however, is that it's come to the point where when I read a Susan Mallery story, I know one of two things is going to happen: the female lead had a child at some point prior to the start of the book, and didn't let the male lead know; anger, drama and frustration that lead to sexual tension commence. Or, the female lead is going to ("oops!") wind up pregnant unexpectedly pregnant, usually because the couple is swept away once and forget to use birth control. I won't say which of these formulas the book fit into, but I'm not even certain it's a spoiler to say that it's one of the two.
That said, even though she sticks to a formula, Mallery does usually tell a really nice story, and that was the case with this book if you can overlook the cliches. There was genuine chemistry between the lead characters and as I said, both were very likable. I don't have anything terribly negative about this particular book to say, but it's the fact that it's getting too formulaic that prevents me from giving it more than 3-stars.