I, Holiday Brown, have it all. A platinum record. Multi-million dollar home in Manhattan that I share with my two best friends. Life is looking fantastic until my roommate’s brother decides to bunk in our guestroom while his house gets renovated.
W. Emmett Bell has always been the bane of my existence. He’s annoying, stubborn, a know it all, and just might be the most gorgeous man I’ve ever laid eyes on. But I refuse to fall for him. But when his sister’s threatened by a stalker, dynamics change. His unwavering faith isn’t quite as self-righteous as I’d always thought, and maybe he has a good side I’ve overlooked all these years.
Or maybe it’s all too much trouble.
The Trouble With Love is the first book in the Christian Chick Lit series: Faith & Fortune.
I enjoyed reading The Trouble With Love and armchair travelling to summer in New York City. Holiday is not your stereotypical popstar and song writer who parties hard and lives an over-the-top celebrity lifestyle. When she’s not touring, she lives in a lovely townhouse in Manhattan’s Upper East Side with her two long time best friends who also have successful careers. Astoria is a supermodel and Octavia is a ballerina.
Astoria’s brother, Emmett, is a Pulitzer Prize-winning photographer who stays with the girls in their guest room while he’s waiting to move back into his apartment. He’s concerned about his sister’s safety because she has acquired a stalker who’s sending her bizarre and scary gifts. Emmett’s parents hire bodyguards to protect the girls and travel with them. The suspense element in the story is like an undercurrent in the surf. The rip is there, but it doesn’t overpower the developing romance between Holiday and Emmett.
Holiday and Emmett have a fun love-hate relationship going back to their teen years. She crushed on him in high school, and never forgot his legalistic view of Christianity that turned her off both faith and him. At the start of the story Holiday describes her feelings for Emmett.
The feelings he evoked in me were akin to childbirth without the mitigating blessing of a bundle of joy.The Trouble With Love by Toni Shiloh
Ouch. What did Emmett do to deserve that thought? He’s sweet and patient with Holiday, and his feelings for her run deep. Holiday is a complex character with emotional baggage from her difficult relationship with her famous father. I loved her journey to faith in the story. Holiday believes she’s a good person. Despite having everything the world says should make her happy, deep down she knows it’s not enough, and knows there’s something missing in her life. She’s also not looking for love, and sums up her sentiment in the following words.
The trouble with love was it always smacked you in the face when you least expected it. Metaphorically speaking, of course, because I wasn’t in love.The Trouble With Love by Toni Shiloh
In the Chick Lit style, the story is written in first person from Holiday’s viewpoint. My reading preference for contemporary romance is third person dual viewpoint for a couple of reasons. I have to really love a character and enjoy being in their head for first person to work for me, and I often become frustrated by not knowing what’s going on in the hero’s head. It takes a talented author with a strong voice to carry me along for the ride in a first person single viewpoint story, and Toni Shiloh delivers a fabulous romance story that I read quickly and couldn’t put down.
I highly recommend The Trouble With Love to contemporary romance readers who like diverse urban Chick Lit romance stories with a strong faith element and a touch of suspense that runs through the series.
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