Top positive review
5 of 5 people found this helpful
Likeable, but not her best...
on 7 January 2012
Erica James' books hit my bookshelf very soon after they hit the ones in the bookshops. I've found that her books fall into two categories - "absolutely brilliant" and "enjoyable". Katie Lavender falls into the latter category.
Within the first page or two, it was predictable what the big "secret" would be, and unfortunately it played out exactly as you might have predicted. The first couple of chapters move a little slowly through this predictability.
The book really picks up when we are introduced to the Nightingales. At first look, I thought the names were meant to be a joke - Stirling Nightingale, Scarlet and Rosco just seemed way too unrealistic. It was a bit of a shock to realise that they weren't a joke. They certainly convey an image of an upper class family.
At this point I began to get interested in the book and the storyline. As others have mentioned, there are quite a lot of equally important characters, and I found myself more interested in the lesser ones. Katie was a little annoying, and Stirling provoked mixed reactions. For someone so intuitive and sensitive, he was remarkably dumb about how much he pampered and spoiled his wife and kids. Lloyd, Pen and Cecily are the best characters, followed by Stirling's brother, Neil, and his mistress.
The ending of the book is nice and happy, but again, it happens just as you expect.
If this is the first Erica James book you have read, please go back and read one of the older ones - "The Queen of New Beginnings", "Paradise House", "Precious Time" (my favourite). If you like Katie Lavender, you will love Erica's older books even more.