Thursday, February 23, 2012

Review of the Coffee Shop by Lauren Hunter

Review of the Coffee Shop by Lauren Hunter.
Blurb via Goodreads
If Derrick thought experiencing alternate timelines and glimpses into the future was strange, then he had no idea it was about to get a whole lot more strange.

When Derrick Sloane meets Annie Maddock and falls madly in love, he believes he's met the girl of his dreams. Only he then awakes to discover she is exactly that...nothing more than a dream. Disheartened, he goes to the first coffee shop he can find. There he meets Annie. She is at the same table, reading the same book, and he fast realizes his dream has shown him his own future. But when a misstep alters that perfect future he tries to fix it, every attempt only making it worse.

Dreaming the future can be a nightmare when you see what's coming...and can't do anything to change it
My review
Annie and Derrick Sloane meet at a coffee shop, they talk, they like each other but their meeting is destined, or is it?
I loved the dialogue in this book, at times it had me giggling and at others I was wondering if I should go and get the tissue box. 
The story is all but simple.  Derrick dreams, over and over again.  His dream starts out with how it came to be that he landed in a way of route coffee shop called The Coffee Shop and so came to meet the woman of his dreams, Annie.
First off the story is told from the perspective of Derrick, this took me some getting used to, and I am not used to reading of men, so completely love struck. 
Each time Derrick dreams he comes to realize that his actions change their possible future together.  The more he tries to change the more things changes, small things at times and at other times these changes are huge.  He tries to circumvent this in order to ensure the perfect future. 
I found the idea of the observer changing the fact of the situation purely by observing the situation portrayed time and time again in this book.  The small changes are all caused because Derrick has lived through that situation before and so he changes his actions minutely at first. 
The story line is expertly constructed and I am very glad that I had the chance to read the majority of the book in one sitting, this is not a book that you can interrupt frequently nor can you take up another book at some stage.  It is hard enough to keep track of events in one sitting and I have to say this is also expertly done; I admire the fact that the author could get the reader to feel some of Derricks own confusion at his situation and at its outcomes with such flair and apparent ease.
My one and only criticism is that the situations got to be a bit much for me.  For the same reason I loved the book it also makes me hesitant to unconditionally recommend it.  The pace of the book picks up and keeps escalating in the second half of the book.  This serves to add to the confusion and desperate actions of Derrick but it became a bit emotionally draining for me.  As I am sure it would on Derrick was this true.  I personally still would have preferred a bit less futures in the book.  Ironically, I am sure that makes two of us.  Me and Derrick both.  So my criticism might be no more than a declaration of genius.
This book is marketed as a supernatural romance but it is primarily a romance.
I give this book a four star rating and recommend it to anybody who loves romance and a challenging read.

More about the author copied verbatim from the copy of The Coffee Shop
Lauren Hunter is a writer of Regency and paranormal romance novels, with
plans to write in a variety of other genres, including time travel, angel, ghost,
and contemporary romance, as well as more Regency and paranormal.
Besides novels, she also writes poetry and short stories, with her poems
appearing in anthologies from England, Holland, and the US. Appearing
in a number of The International Library of Poetry’s anthologies, she has
received the Editor’s Choice Award and was published in The International
Who’s Who of Poetry 2004.

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