The story: Ivy is the best friend of Stuart's younger sister, Merrie. Due to Ivy's crush on Stuart, she tends to avoid staying at Stuart's house, even though she loves and misses Merrie. One weekend Merrie convinces Ivy to stay at their home, b/c Stuart is out of town. Ivy agrees, and (gasp) Stuart comes home early and catches Merrie there.
They share a "passionate embrace" (believe me, that's all it was) and Stuart proceeds to stay away from her for the next two years. He believes that she's too young. She was 18 at the time. Stuart was 30. Two years later, Stuart runs into Ivy at a dance and decides to resume their relationship. That's their romance......in a nutshell.
The hi-jinx ensued when the little old town of Jacobsville becomes a "hot bed" for dug dealers and drug dealing activity. Hmmm...found that one a little hard to believe as well. Still...
Winter Roses is another "classic Palmer." I think. I mean the Palmer "cookie cutter" storyline rang true here...young, naive, virginal, poor, abused (verbal as well as physical) sweet, and not so pretty heroine versus the rich, handsome, not so nice, but "experienced" older man. I'm used to that from Diana Palmer.
However, usually her heroines has some redeeming qualities. Okay, not much, but some sort of backbone that they can call on at some point. Unfortunately, Ivy didn't have any. She was such a "doormat" in this story that I finally understood what the phrase "Too Stupid To Live" (TSTL) meant. And honestly, midway through the story, it would not have bothered me if she met with some untimely demise. Unfortunately, Diana just didn't oblige.
And Stuart was just boring. Usually, the hero in Diana's story tends to treat the heroine in some unforgivable fashion and has to crawl back to the heroine on "bended knee," so to speak. This did not happen in this story. And quite frankly, because it didn't happen, it made an already dry story practically unbearable.
Quite frankly, there is NO reason to suffer through this story. I mean, Diana generally writes pretty boring stories, but this was worse than normal. It was probably b/c it was so short, and she tried to rush a few plots with it. I don't recommend it to anyone, whether you're a fan (and I usually am) or not.