I absolutely loved A Wedding One Christmas, the first in this series about the Roux sisters, so I was excited to pick up One Day To Fall to review as well. It’s a different kind of book to the first; while Angie and Ezra’s first meeting and subsequent day together read like a delightful romantic comedy, Angie’s sister Sophia is a much more prickly customer, and her love interest Parker is in a very difficult headspace as well after just learning his mother has early-onset dementia. The timing is poor for both of them, and yet when you find that one person who understands you, the one person who’s both on your wavelength and with whom you share an intense attraction… well, maybe the universe is telling you that the timing doesn’t really matter.
Sophia and Parker spend an intense day together, using each other as distractions from the emotional situations neither are ready to deal with. Neither of them are the type to back down from speaking truths, no matter how harsh, though, and from each other they also gain a new perspective. It’s a very introspective read as both protagonists examine themselves and their situations and realize they need to make changes, and at times I found myself disliking both Sophia and Parker even while I understood the background and motivations which made them react so defensively, at times going on the attack just to avoid having to face unpalatable truths about themselves.
Here’s a truism about romance, though; everyone deserves it, and even though Sophia might be a hard person to like at times (her own sister, when accused of being passive aggressive, comments that Sophia is just ‘aggressive aggressive’) she still absolutely deserves to find love with someone who gets her, and she and Parker really are superbly well-suited.
The other thing I really enjoy about Therese Beharrie’s writing is that her protagonists are ordinary people. They’re not billionaires or film stars; Sophia works in Human Resources and Parker is a freelance journalist who drives regular shifts for a car service. They’re normal people. Oh, and they’re Black South Africans living in Cape Town, a city which plays a large part in the story as Sophia and Parker ‘play tourist’ for the day.
I have to confess I didn’t like this one as much as A Wedding One Christmas. Lacking the romantic comedy aspects and featuring a great deal more soul-searching, the writing was still superb but it was Sophia’s aggressive nature that put me off a bit. I honestly think I’d avoid her as just a bit too much if I met her in real life. Still, it’s a great story and I’m going to give it four and a half stars.
One Day to Fall is available now.
Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book for review via NetGalley.