Truly, Madly by Heather Webber is the first chick-lit series I’ve gotten excited about in a long time. I had a hard time putting this one down, and already look forward to the next book.
Lucy Valentine’s family all has the same gift: they can read auras, and thus bring perfectly matched couples together. However, ever since she got electrocuted in her teens, Lucy’s psychic ability is rather different. She can find lost objects—but only objects, not people. Since she lacks her father’s matchmaking gift, she dreads filling in for him while he takes a break. She doesn’t expect things to go well, but shaking the hand of a client and finding a dead body wasn’t one of the problems she thought she’d have. With the help of Sean Donahue, the private investigator upstairs, Lucy decides she has to solve the mystery and clear the suspicion surrounding her client. Meanwhile, a little boy is lost in the woods and Lucy is trying to find a way for her “gift” to actually do some good and save lives.
Lucy is a relatable, down-to-earth, intelligent heroine. She has a strong voice, and one that didn’t get on my nerves the way so many first-person narrators do. I liked her. A lot. She does some sort of stupid things, but nothing absurd—just the usual “I’m not going to call the police, I’ll do it myself” logic necessary to insert a civilian into a murder investigation. Lucy has strong relationships with her friends and family, and despite their minor character status I’m still excited to read more about what happens in their love lives. I sensed a few motions toward more detailed plots involving these people, and they’re just one more reason I look forward to Deeply, Desperately.
Sean is another good character, with an interesting set of strengths and weaknesses. He and Lucy fit together really well, and have a great emotional and physical chemistry together. Again there are a few huge leaps of faith he makes that are necessary to drive the plot along, but nothing so extreme that it drew me out of the story.
The suspense plot wasn’t particularly smooth and had a couple of fairly obvious red herrings, but did have a few interesting twists as well. Unfortunately, one of the biggest twists hinges on some shoddy police work—so just don’t pay too much attention to what the actual police do off-scene.