Book Review: "Just Between You and Me" by Jenny B Jones
Maggie lives life on the edge, seemingly unafraid of anything. But the image she so carefully constructed is coming undone.
Maggie's job as a videographer takes her around the world. She tells people's stories, especially those of impoverished children. That's when she feels most alive, like she's making the world better.
But when a secret from her past resurfaces, Maggie gets a call that sends her home. Her dad desperately needs her help. Her estranged sister has run off, leaving 8-year-old Riley in his care.She returns reluctantly, hoping to help her niece. There she reconnects with Cooper--a once awkward and shy, now handsome, veterinarian. Her feelings skyrocket when she's with him, but she's afraid if she shows him her true self, he'll reject her.
An honest, hilarious journey that will transform Maggie--if she just learns to trust more and fearless.
I am a HUGE fan of Jenny's YA books and have been for the past few years so I was totally eager to read her first adult fiction novel. Her YA books are totally fun to read and really speak to me so I had high expectations for this book. I was definitely not disappointed. Even though Maggie is older than Jenny's past protagonist, she still in a voice that I could totally relate to. Maggie gives a lot of one-liners and can be quite sarcastic at times which adds to the humor in the book. It's good she does that because there's a lot of heavy material in the book to tackle. Her relationship with her niece is a highlight of the book as we watch them grow together.
The part of the book that stood out most to me was the entire dynamic of Maggie's family. She's had to bear the weight of being present while her mother committed suicide and then having a mentally unstable sister blame her for it. Plus her father seems to care more about hiding the situation than being there for the daughter that really needs him. I was so glad when she confronted her father. He honestly made me mad while reading the book. I know I say this now while I don't have kids, but there is no way I am going to knowingly fund my child's drug habit and pretend to myself that I'm "helping" them.
One thing I was really worried about was that I was afraid Maggie was going to have give up all her dreams just to stay back at home. Many books have this storyline where the main character has left home to find their dreams but then end up having to return to fulfill family obligations and thus sacrifice their future plans. While family is always important, I just hate having to see people give up careers they've worked so hard for. Thankfully that does not happen in this book. Without giving away any huge spoilers, I was pleased that Maggie was able to fulfill both her duty to family and accomplish the dream she's always wanted.
As I said before I really enjoyed reading this book. Jenny's style of writing is really easy to read and thrusts you into the story so you feel like you are a part of it. The characters come to life and are extremely realistic. There aren't too many Christian books that wouldn't let a character like Allison end up the way she does without a happy ending or without getting magically healed. I was really pleased with this book and it's probably one of my favorite reads of the year. If you haven't read any of Jenny's books (or even if you have) this is definite must read. HIGHLY recommended.
Just Between You and Me by Jenny B Jones is published by Thomas Nelson (2009)
This review copy was provided by the publisher