I'm on tour again with Rachel's Random Resources, talking today about Kathryn Freeman's Reach for a Star.
What if your dreams were so close you could reach out and touch them?
How could anyone resist Michael Tennant, with his hypnotic blue eyes and voice like molten chocolate? Jessie Simmons certainly can’t. But Jessie’s a single mum who can’t sing to save her life – there’s no way she’ll ever cross paths with the star tenor.
At least that’s what she thinks until she’s unexpectedly invited to take part in a new reality TV show. The premise? Professional singers teach hopeless amateurs how to sing. The surprise? Jessie’s partner is none other than Michael Tennant!
As she becomes better acquainted with the man behind the voice, will Jessie find out the hard way that you should never meet your idols? Or will she get more than she bargained for?
Who hasn’t had a crush on a superstar and dreamed of meeting them in person, right? Conjured up a scenario where said superstar falls for them and sweeps them off their feet?
Well, the first few chapters of Reach for a Star play out exactly this way. Pharmacist Jessie meets singing superstar Michael when her sons sign her up for a reality tv show, and against all her expectations, somehow they fall for each other!
At the end of the show, however, reality intervenes with a cold hard thump, because Jessie has two sons, aged 10 and 13. By a wild coincidence, that’s precisely the age this reader’s two sons are at, so I know EXACTLY what Jessie’s going through when she feels she has to put them first. Michael’s a genuinely good guy, but he’s an introvert who doesn’t interact well with people on an individual basis. He can’t always find the words to express how he feels and he really doesn’t have any experience either with having to make compromises in relationships or with kids. He tries his best, though, and his best is pretty darn good - but his and Jessie’s worlds are a very long way apart, and for a while it really does look like love isn’t going to conquer all.
This is such an interesting take on the Cinderella trope, looking at the collision of fantasy and reality and the choices we have to make in the cold hard light of day to put those we love best first. Jessie’s decision to let her dream slip away because her sons were the most important people in her life was realism at its most pure and heartbreaking. Of course this is a romance and she and Michael do get their happily ever after, but it’s handled in a really clear-eyed way, making it clear they’ve both had to make compromises and accept changes they wouldn’t have embraced without the incentive of needing to in order to be with the one you love. It’s a genuinely lovely story with characters who felt absolutely real, and I thoroughly enjoyed the read. Five stars.
Reach for a Star is available now.
Disclaimer: I received a review copy of this book via Rachel’s Random Resources.
Author Bio –
A former pharmacist, I’m now a medical writer who also writes romance. Some days a racing heart is a medical condition, others it’s the reaction to a hunky hero.
With two teenage boys and a husband who asks every Valentine’s Day whether he has to buy a card (yes, he does), any romance is all in my head. Then again, his unstinting support of my career change proves love isn't always about hearts and flowers - and heroes come in many disguises.
Social Media Links –
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