Sweet Misfortune - Kevin Alan Milne (General Fiction)
Released June 2010
Try to get through the beginning of this novel without needing Kleenex! I certainly didn't. Having chosen to start reading it while waiting for high school to let out so that I could pick up my son, I never expected to be sitting there with tears streaming down my face and nothing on hand to wipe them away, short of my shirt sleeve.
Sophie Jones has not had the easiest of lives. Tragedy struck her at a young age, and when her fiance walked away shortly before their wedding, she became convinced that happiness is a sham. She spends her days running her chocolate shop and that's all she figures life has in store for her.
When Garrett Black returns to explain why he backed out of their wedding, Sophie is unwilling to talk to him or agree to his request for a date. Instead, Garrett asks her if she'd agree to go out with him if his personal ad finds 100 people who know what true happiness is. She knows happiness is fleeting, so she agrees. She never expects his simple ad to change her world.
Part romance, part mystery and completely satisfying, I had a hard time putting Sweet Misfortune down. The problem is life kept getting in my way. Instead, I took to late night reading before bed. Thankfully, I found time last night to complete it and was mesmerized from start to finish.
I love a lot about this book. Sophie's had it rough, so it's hard not to understand her belief that happiness does not exist. Garrett...I wish he'd been a little more honest from the get go, but that would have drastically changed the story.
What I found myself wondering is why the story had to end. I was so involved in the characters that this one glimpse just wasn't enough. I'd love to see the author return to Washington and share stories from some of the minor characters. A few really grabbed me and I'd like to hear what becomes of them.