Olivia Bishop is no fun. That’s what her ex-husband said. And that’s what her smart bob and glasses imply. So with her trademark determination, Olivia sets out to remake her life. She’s going to spend time with her girlfriends and not throw it all away for some man. But when an outing with her book club leads her to a brewery taproom…, the dark-haired beauty realizes that trouble — in the form of sexy Jamie Donovan — may be too tempting to avoid.
Jamie Donovan doesn’t mean to be bad. Sure, the wild streak in his wicked green eyes has lured the ladies before. Now it’s time to grow up. He’s even ready for a serious romance. But how can that be when Olivia, the only right woman he has ever met, already has him pegged as wrong.
Olivia Bishop, a recently divorced woman who married too young and made her husband her entire world, needs more friends, so she joins a book club. Her friend Gwen’s idea of a book club entails monthly meetings at Donovan Brother’s Brewery, where all the women flirt with the cute bartender, Jamie. Olivia understands the attraction, but he’s too young for her, plus he probably has women falling all over him and takes advantage of that. So Olivia decides to enjoy the eye candy, but makes a quick exit…
…only to run into him at her work as an instructor at the local university, where she teaches a restaurant development and management class. Jamie’s decided to go back to school to learn all he can so he can present Eric and Tessa with a feasible update at the brewery, an addition of pizza to their menu. It’s all very hush-hush because Jamie knows his siblings think of him as a screw up, but he wants to be a part of Donovan Brother’s in the same way that Eric and Tessa are, not just as the bartender. But he has to prove himself.
I really liked Olivia, she reminded me of myself. A little shy, a little socially awkward. Olivia was a bit of a doormat, initially. She let her ex-husband get away with so much, parading around with his much younger (former student) girlfriend and making sure Olivia was witness to it all. She’s put herself on a shelf, not thinking that she could find another man (not that that was at all her intention, she wasn’t chasing after men). But under Jamie’s guidance, she starts to come into her own, starts to stand up for herself with not only the ex, but also her mother, who feels Olivia needs someone to “take care of” her. Maybe she did at 22, but not at 35.
How do I feel about Jamie? Jamie Donovan, the bad boy in the kilt hitting on you (and everyone else at the table) while serving beer; Jamie Donovan, heartbreaker, relentless flirt, black sheep of the family and all around good guy. I want to put him in my pocket and carry him around, pull him out to snuggle. I was not expecting Jamie to have any depth to him based on Tessa’s view of him in Good Girls Don’t. I mean, I didn’t think he was as bad a guy as Eric obviously does, but I thought he was a good-time guy, all play and no work. I LOVED Jamie. He was sweet, insecure, multifaceted and devoted to his family and the brewery. He understood Eric and Tessa’s view of him and worked hard to change it, even if he wasn’t entirely successful.
Overall, the book was great. I liked both characters and the storyline. I especially loved how Olivia changed her mind about going out with Jamie (she uses him to make her ex-husband jealous, but I wish she would have told him her intentions right away). I loved witnessing Jamie mature. There were a couple times I teared up for him. He was misunderstood and no one listened to him when he tried to explain himself. I was very frustrated for him. I loved him and Olivia together. They brought out the best in each other, which is what a good love story should help to accomplish. And this book gets an R rating. Very hot (beware).