Author: Taylor Dean
Publication Date: June 6, 2013
Genre: Contemporary Romance
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Synopsis from Goodreads:
Can you fall in love with a picture?
After Marisa survives a traumatic experience in her youth, she finds comfort in the form of a photograph of Joshua, her foster mother’s nephew. She falls in love with him, creating and refining an image of the man of her dreams. When Marisa has the opportunity to visit Joshua’s cattle ranch outside of Amarillo, Texas, she meets Joshua in person for the first time. She quickly realizes he is someone she could really fall in love with, not just a silly childhood crush.
Life is seemingly perfect for Josh and Marisa, with endless possibilities before them. That is, until Josh’s reservations take a toll on their relationship and their summertime romance ends rather unexpectedly.
Will Marisa be able to forgive Josh for his folly?
If you like clean romance novels and you haven't picked up one of Taylor Deans books, you really need to do so. I have read all but her latest book now and I have loved every one of them. This one was a little different in that it didn't have a twist or any suspense, but I enjoyed it just the same. Joshua's Folly is a pretty straight forward romance novel.
Marisa suffered a tragedy early in her life and at the age of 11 she is placed in a new home. During one of her first nights while having trouble sleeping she comes across a picture of a young man. He is the nephew of the couple who took her in. She falls in love with the boy in that picture and though she never meets him while she is growing up he has turned into her Prince Charming. They have phone conversations, but never actually meet until now. Marisa is now 24 and is going to spend the summer in Texas being a nanny to Joshua's 5 year old daughter.
Josh is only 4 years older than Marisa. He was home schooled, but went away to college. He married right out of college, but that didn't last long. His wife left him when Bethany was only 6 weeks old. He has done a great jog raising a daughter on his own, but as Bethany gets older he realizes that she needs a woman in her life. She has Constance the housekeeper, but she needs someone younger in her life.
The minute they meet in person it's clear that they are both taken with each other. It takes some time for things to turn romantic, but they have an obvious chemistry right off. Their banter is wonderful and how they interact with Bethany is also great. They seem like the perfect little family right from the beginning. Sure, they have their share of issues, but their romance is sweet and romantic all the same. Any scene with Bethany is a delight and she steals the spotlight for sure. You can't help but love this little girl, she is just a joy throughout the entire story.
Taylor has this way of really making you care about her characters and Marissa and Josh are no exception. I gave this book 4 stars and I will tell you why. If you have been following my reviews you will notice that there are a couple of things that drive me crazy in books and the main one is when the characters doing something stupid for petty reasons. Like breaking up with someone after overhearing a conversation that wasn't meant for their ears, etc... There were several instances where this happens in this book. I know that it adds drama, yadda yadda.... but here is why it bothered me in this book. These characters are so mature, they know what they want so when they acted this way it seemed out of character. There were times that they were just downright mean to each other, for really stupid reasons and it just seemed wrong.
So, all in all I really enjoyed the book. I loved the setting of the ranch and the folly. It's all beautifully described in a way that makes you feel like you are right there in Texas with Josh and Marissa. It's a good clean story with characters that clearly have high moral standards, but who aren't afraid of some good old fashioned making out! There is no pre-marital sex and they don't use any profanity at all. If you like a good clean romance then you really need to start reading Taylor's books, you won't be disappointed at all.
*Disclaimer: I was provided with a copy of this book, courtesy of the author, in exchange for my honest review.