Desert Isle Keeper
The humor is really fun in this one! There’s actual letter writing, a large family, fake dating and a sweet rescue dog named Lieutenant Dan. The whole thing worked for me!
The story opens with Dr. Briana Ortiz finding out the promotion she wants so badly could go to the new doctor, Jacob. Brianna is a well-respected emergency physician and hopes to become Chief of Emergency Medicine but the hospital tells her they want to wait three months before making a decision in case a newer doctor is interested in the job. She is also helping care for her younger brother who is in desperate need of a kidney. Furthermore, Brianna is coming up on the date when her divorce from her cheating ex-husband will be finalized. Thankfully, her best friend, Alexis, from Jimenez’s last book, Part of Your World, is checking in with her to make plans to help her through this stressful time.
Dr. Jacob Maddox–he is the new doctor–has social anxiety and is trying to adjust to his new job at the hospital. He is shy and often says the wrong thing and his team doesn’t really like him. He was Chief of Emergency at his previous hospital but left because he wanted to distance himself from his ex, Amy, a fellow MD he had dated for over two years. When they broke up, she started dating his brother, Jeremiah.
One day, When Jacob needs a break at work, he goes to hide in a supply closet to recharge. He finds Brianna already there. She is in tears due to her brother Ben’s health concerns. Jacob is lovely to her and, in return, Brianna gives him a tip on how to win over his coworkers – cupcakes. Jacob likes her and would like to talk to her but his anxiety makes it hard for him. He decides to write her a letter instead. He does though tell her and his boss that he’s not interested in being Chief of Staff because he wants to simplify his life. I appreciated that this didn’t drag on and he openly communicated about this. Soon he and Brianna are writing letters back and forth and becoming friends. Their letters are funny and one of the best things about this very good book.
But then his family finds out his brother, Jeremiah and his ex, Amy are getting married. The family is upset at Jeremiah and quit inviting him to their family gatherings. They also say they won’t go to the wedding because they think that Jacob has been wronged. Jacob tells them he is happy for his brother and ex and he will be at their wedding. He also, however, lies and says he has a new girlfriend so his family will quit feeling sorry for him. Now he needs to find someone to fake date before the next family gathering and to take to the wedding in July.
Zander, Jacob’s friend and fellow doctor, tells him about Brianna’s brother, Ben and that he has no match for a kidney yet. Ben has the rarest blood type and has dialysis four hours a day every other day. Zander asks Jacob if he would get tested for Ben because Jacob is an O blood type and they discover Jacob is a match. Jacob wants to help because he remembers how much it meant when someone gave his mom a kidney when she needed one.
Brianna finds out that Jacob will be the donor for her brother’s new kidney and when she hears he needs a fake girlfriend for a few months for his brother and ex’s wedding, she offers to do it. She will go to family dinners and all the wedding events but this is no problem for her because she thinks he’s handsome and she likes his big family. I thought his family was a hoot and really enjoyed reading about them. Jacob and Brianna decide to spend more time getting to know each other so they are more convincing to his family. They play games like Would You Rather and Catchphrase (they slip a famous phrase into a conversation) and together, they are really funny.
Brianna had been online dating and it was funny to hear about some of her disastrous dates, like the guy that had a court ordered Breathalyzer in his car and asked her to breathe into it. She shows Jacob her online dating profile and he notices it says she’s looking for someone to date casually, and have fun with, and her date must like tacos. She doesn’t want anything serious, no marriage, no kids. Brianna moved back to her old, run down family home after her ten year marriage broke up last year. Also, her dad left her mom and her when she was 8 years old and she doesn’t trust men. She believes they will hurt her and leave her. This has been reinforced by her ex having an affair, seeing battered woman in the ER and dating jerks on Tinder. She feels like she has no joy in her life until she starts spending time with Jacob. Brianna finds herself excited and happy when she is with him. He has a wonderful three legged rescue dog named Lieutenant Dan and a home with a room full of plants she calls his secret garden. His team at work now sees him as a good guy. Brianna begins to think she might want to try a relationship again, with him.
Jacob thinks Brianna is beautiful and intelligent and she makes him feel calm and normal. Although it takes a while for them to work through Briana’s fear she will be abandoned again, Jacob finds a unique way to comfort her. Really, they are a perfect match and it is gratifying to see them support each other with their challenges. Overall, Yours Truly is a refreshing delight and I highly recommend it.
Kayne Spooner is a retired science teacher, dog owner, and proud grandma who lives in beautiful Colorado. While she's an avid reader of all genres, romances have always swept her off her feet. Kayne gravitates toward stories with humor, swoon-worthy love interests, and memorable furry sidekicks, although really, if there's a happy ever after, she's here for it! She loves sharing her passion for books with the romance community and connecting with fellow readers. https://www.instagram.com/kspoonerfish/.
|Review Date:||April 12, 2023|
|Book Type:||Contemporary Romance|
|Review Tags:||anxiety | AoC | coworkers | doctor | dogs | epistolary | fake relationship | mental illness | PoC|
AJ always does a good job!
I need to check out some of her other books:)
The first of her books has something truly horrible happen to supporting characters, and it burned me so badly I never picked her up again. The repeat good reviews are making me feel like I might be able to try her when other people have vetted the plot…
I haven’t read this author yet but I’ve been wanting to. This book sounds adorable actually. And the personality of the main hero and writing the letter because anxious/shy reminds me of my dad! He did that with my mom to ask her out he was so shy! I need to read this one!
That is so sweet that your dad wrote letters to your mom. I would love to hear your thoughts after you’ve had a chance to read it.