Age Group: Adult
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Release Date: November 6th 2012
Blog Tour: AToMR
What happens to your Happily-Ever-After when your Fairy Godmother doesn't show up for work?
Julia Basham’s life was perfect. She was finally done with school, about to start an internship with a prestigious financial company which would lead to a great job and, best of all, she’d just become engaged to her very own Prince Charming, Nicholas Kerkley. Unfortunately, while Nick was warm, intelligent, and completely devoted to Julia, he was also a college dropout, with no job to speak of, and almost completely broke.
While none of his shortcomings were a problem for Julia, they were a big problem for her older sister Lisa, who told her that a guy like Nick wasn’t proper marriage material for a girl on the fast track to success, Julia began to reconsider the relationship. Although she didn’t wholeheartedly agree with Lisa, after some thought Julia decided that she would take her sister’s advice and end her engagement with Nick, convincing herself that it was the right thing to do. Only after breaking Nick’s heart, and her own in the process, did Julia realize what a horrible mistake it was.
As the story opens nearly a decade later, Julia is the quiet shadow of the woman everyone thought she’d be, who’s once fulfilling life has fallen into a stale and safe existence. Her shell of a world is thrown into upheaval when she finds out that the financial planning team she works for has taken on a new client; a now successful and very rich Nick Kerkley. Stuck in a horribly awkward situation, Julia makes a decision–take charge, step up, and find her own happy ending. However, she quickly realizes that fairy tales aren’t as strait forward as we’ve been brought up to believe. Sometimes, to get to happily ever after, you have to stop waiting for fate, strap on a pair of wings, and be your own fairy godmother.
Once Upon A Second Chance, is a modern yet whimsical take on Austen’s classic love story, Persuasion.
I loved this book. Yes, I know you hear that from me more often than not, but a lot of times I see a book cover I like or a read a description that sounds interesting and I go into reading a book with little or no expectations. So when I find one that I honestly enjoy to the point of not being able to put it down, I get ridiculously excited because I didn’t expect it to be that good in the first place, so it’s like a treat.
Once Upon a Second Chance by Marian Vere is that book. I thought it would be something cute to get me out of all the paranormal stuff I’ve been reading lately, but I wound up relating to it a lot more than I ever thought I would. Julia Basham’s life was perfect. She was done with school, about to start a prestigious internship, which would lead to a great job, and she was engaged to the man of her dreams, Nick Kerkley.
But when her sister Lisa finds out the two are engaged she quickly talks Julia out of getting married and in with conflicting feelings and a need to follow her sisters advice she winds up breaking off her engagement with Nick, shattering his heart in the process. The story opens up eight years later and we see through flashbacks that Julia is only a shell of the woman she used to be.
Where she was once passionate, lively and full of drive, Julia has now become complacent and content in a life that’s beneath what she’s capable of. But of course fate intervenes and Nick comes back into her life when he becomes a client of the financial team she works for. The idea for this book was masterful, I kid you not. Vere had gold with the whole fairy godmother scenario and the angle she took, the way Julia had to put herself out there to get what she wanted was very realistic.
I’m not going to lie, this book made me cry, yes I’m owning up to it, but I think it’s because I understand how she was feeling and I related to Julia so much that I couldn’t help feeling her pain. The fact that she’d had made the wrong choice in the beginning with breaking things off, well who doesn’t regret a decision or two in their lives?
I think the part that got me the most was when Nick arranged for her team to go up to look at a house and they all spent time together including Nicks friends and sister. I loved Bree as a supporting character but oh my god I think my heart broke for Julia when Nick and Bree were flirting. Vere’s style of writing and her obvious passion for her own story came through with every word.
There’s a really awesome twist in the story and I have to give Vere credit because she totally had me going. I was cursing Julia and the book and everything even though I couldn’t put it down, but then she made everything right with five little words and I let out this huge breath I didn’t even know I was holding.
Nick is an amazing character and while I enjoyed all the characters in the story, his unyielding faith in love and his outlook on life makes him my favorite. His speech at the rehearsal dinner brought tears to my eyes. It was all just so damn good. I can’t get over how much I thoroughly enjoyed it.
This book is insightful, romantic, heartbreaking, and has a whimsical feeling that’s reminiscent of childhood dreams and falling in love. If you’re into contemporary romance and second chances, Once Upon a Second Chance is for you.
Marian Vere is a twenty eight year old writer of Women's Fiction. Born and raised in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, she received her degree from Edinboro University of Pennsylvania in--oddly enough--vocal music performance, only to later discover her love of writing and storytelling. Marian is represented by Carly Watters of PS Literary, and currently lives in the suburbs of Chicago with her Husband, and two daughters.