by Stephanie Adkins, contemporary (2010)
Liquid Silver Books, $3.99, ISBN 978-1-59578-697-5
Now this is a surprise indeed. I hadn't been bowled over by the previous works of Stephanie Adkins that I read, so I wasn't expecting much when I started reading Driving Miss Devin. Much to my pleasant surprise, almost everything works for me in this short story.
The plot is simple. Having watched Devin Malone descend into a downward spiral of rage, jealousy, and self pity, her chauffeur Cole Braxton realizes that he can no longer stand by and remain the silent employee, not when the woman he loves can't seem to realize that she's better off without her ex-husband that cheated on her and dumped her for a much younger woman. Can he convince her that the right man for her has been standing before her all this while, and can she overcome her issues to reach out and grab happiness with both hands? It's a very big amount of happiness, if you know what I mean, and certainly big enough to make a lovelorn lady see the light at the end of the dark tunnel.
Having a rear end shag to celebrate one's joyous beginning with a hot younger man is tad too over the top for me, but on the whole, this story packs a pretty good punch. For a story of its short length, it manages to put Devin through a heartbreaking emotional grinder and force her to come to an epiphany in a way that is both convincing and poignant. Cole can be too good to be true, but when the lady is blue and is need of a good shag with a hot guy who adores her, who's complaining?
Considering the length of this story, I'm impressed by how well the author engaged my emotions and made me care for the main characters. When's the story with the pool boy coming out?
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