Series: New York #1
Published by Loveswept on August 5th, 2014
Genres: Chick Lit, Contemporary Romance
May Fredericks hates New York. Which is fair enough, since New York seems to hate her back. After relocating to Manhattan from the Midwest to be with her long-distance boyfriend, NFL quarterback Thor Einarsson, May receives the world’s worst marriage proposal, stabs the jerk with a shrimp fork, and storms off alone—only to get mugged. Now she’s got no phone, no cash, and no friends. How’s a nice girl supposed to get back to safe, sensible Wisconsin?
Frankly, Ben Hausman couldn’t care less. Sure, it’s not every day he meets a genuine, down-to-earth woman like May—especially in a dive in the Village—but he’s recovering from an ugly divorce that cost him his restaurant. He wants to be left alone to start over and become a better man. Then again, playing the white knight to May’s sexy damsel in distress would be an excellent place to start—if only he can give her one very good reason to love New York.
I promised myself that I will read books by new-to-me authors. I’m grateful for my acquaintance’s recommendation to read this novel by Ms. Knox because I enjoyed this very much! I love the banter between the two characters and both of the main characters’ journey to rediscovery and growth.
Wisconsin native May Fredericks’ day is not going well… at all. After accidentally stabbing her NFL second-string quarterback boyfriend with a fork when he gave the saddest excuse of a wedding proposal, she runs out of their place in Manhattan only to get mugged by a man who she thought was a security guard. She goes to a place she might feel comfortable–a Packers bar. There, she tries to regroup and find a way to go home to Wisconsin, but with only $5 to her name, it’s a near impossible task.
There she meets Ben Hausman, who coincidentally hailed from Wisoncin as well but now considers himself a New Yorker. Bitter and angry after getting burned by his ex-wife, he’s become frustrated with his life and career. He didn’t leave much opening to May when she approached him, but after talking to his friend about his temper problems, he uses this as a test to prove himself he can be a good guy.
He helps May by feeding her, offering to help her contact her friends and family, and offering his place for her to stay the night. He then convinces her to stay the week with her to show her what New York can truly offer.
The storyline reminded me of the Before trilogy starring Ethan Hawke and Julie Delpy, which I loved. A chance meeting between two strangers who find an undeniable connection with each other. As they discover the city together, they discover more about each other, and more about themselves as well.
May has been living in a metaphorical box her whole life. Everyone expects her to be this way, and she hasn’t done anything to get out of said box in fear of failing everyone. New York and Ben helped her see what she can be and what she’s missing, but she wouldn’t be able to reach her full potential unless she learns to let go.
Ben is in a similar predicament. He’s been trying to get back on his feet after his ex-wife left him and took his restaurant from him. It left him angry and at a loss on how to continue his life.
I love how poetic and lyrical the narrative is sometimes. For me, it give the story more soul. I can’t fully explain it without quoting most of the book (lol), but all I can say is it made me feel light.
Like Claire, this was a solid 4 stars for me until somewhere in the 70-80% mark. I wasn’t a fan of the back and forth between the couple, and I was so frustrated with May when she seemed to revert back to her old ways. But once that part was done, it was back to 4 stars.
Overall, I still liked this story. I was pleasantly surprised that I enjoyed the romantic element despite their sort-of instant love. It helped that there was a bit of slow burn feel to it.
Truly is the first standalone novel in the New York series and is told in the third POV, although we do get glimpses of Ben and May’s thoughts. It has a high dose of humor, a little slow burn, and a wonderful image of New York. If you’re looking for a fun, light read with witty banter, an amazing adventure, and a happily ever after, you’ll enjoy Truly.
It wasn’t simple or pretty. Possibly that was his point–that the whole city was dense with history, layered and pulsing with life.
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