When Shandi Pierce set off with her son Natty and best friend Walcott in a tiny VW filled with all of her possessions, it was just to move to her father's condo in the city. The location was closer to college and the new school her three-year-old genius would be attending. But fate stepped in placing Shandi and Natty in the middle of a gas station hold up. William Ashe saved the day only to get shot himself and in their shared moments Shandi fell a little in love with William. But William is a broken man. As he deals with the loss of his wife and daughter, he'll have to decide if he's ready to open up to someone else.
Oh, this is such a sweet and wonderful story! I'd already fallen in love with these characters when I read the little e short tie in, "My Own Miraculous." In the story, we meet Shandi, Natty, and Walcott as well as their families. It's not at all necessary to have read it to read Someone Else's Love Story but it was a nice prologue to the book and my first taste of Jackson's work. I definitely recommend it.
It's also clear if you read "My Own Miraculous" that Shandi is dealing with some big issues. Issues that she begins to face very early on in Someone Else's Love Story: her parents and her son. In fact, the circumstances behind her pregnancy were a curious point in the short that I expected would be addressed in the book and boy was it! Shandi, William, and Walcott are each forced to face things they've been avoiding as a result of the hold up.
And William. Oh, William! It's true that Asperger's and autism have become a bit of a trend of late. It's my understanding that this was a bit of a thorn in Jackson's side and that William had been on her mind for quite some time. I thought she did a wonderful job in writing William and his perspective, again striking a great balance with his POV without ever going too far. It helps with the way his particular story plays out as well, all things considered.
Jackson has a charming style. Her characters here are all southern without being over the top. Her story is a perfect balance of quirky and heartwarming but there are some tense and even some tearjerking moments as well. I also have to add in that I immediately pictured Walcott as Arthur Darville here! Maybe it's because I'm in Doctor Who mode but I couldn't help it. Seriously, Who was the only thing that tore me away from reading this book! (I was smitten by Walcott early on in spite of his being a poet.)
All in all, this is such an exceptional read for so many reasons. This will not be my last time reading Jackson, I can assure you of that!
To see more stops on the tour be sure to check out the official TLC tour page here.
For more on Joshilyn Jackson and her work, you can visit her website here. You can also like her on Facebook and follow her on Twitter.