Thursday, July 2, 2009

Romance Book Review: The 39-Year-Old Virgin

Author: Marie Ferrarella
ISBN: 9780373654659
Genre: Silhouette/Contemporary Romance/Home and Family


Exceptionally written characters make up this Silhouette Special Edition about a former Dominican Sister who decides to leave the order when she suddenly realizes it just doesn't feel right anymore. She goes home to take care of her ailing mother and meets a man, whom as a boy she used to babysit.

This is a real crossroads story for Claire as she tries a assimilate with a world where she isn't quite sure God is standing by her side anymore. All has not changed for Claire though. Even now when she doesn't quite know where she fits into this new world she is creating for herself, she is lending a helping hand. When she sees that the boy she once knew is experiencing a world of hurt in his own right as a man, she steps in to help him.

Caleb is no longer the smiling face boy Claire remembered. An already hardened police, vice detective Caleb experienced a great loss when his wife was violently killed the year before. He makes it through the day only because of his son, Danny.

Claire knows that just surviving isn't working anymore for either Caleb or Danny and she pushes her way into their lives to make a difference.

One of the best part about Marie's writing is that she succeeds in producing believable, exciting characters. She has done her best work with both Claire and Caleb. Readers can feel the emotion sizzle not only between these two characters, but also when they are dealing separately with their own issues. I also like the fact that she doesn't try to fix all their hurts in just one week and suddenly the two are falling in love, but gives both characters time to adjust to the new world they've been thrown into and to come to terms with everything.

Note: While Claire is an ex-nun in this book, the religious aspect of the book remains very neutral. The story line is based on the individual characters and how they adjust to the world around them.

It was a big world out there…

But was ex-nun Claire Santaniello ready for it? Her yearning for a home and family had her shedding her habit and moving back to California. But her true calling definitely wasn't with sexy single dad Caleb McClain. Was it?

The stunning redhead seemed uncomfortable in the crowded bar. She was also tantalizingly familiar. Caleb couldn't believe the girl he'd once loved was now a teacher in their hometown. Soon after he rescued her from the dance floor, Claire made it her mission to bring out his softer side, arousing feelings Caleb couldn't ignore. Was it finally time for them to create the future together they both craved?

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