Book Review: Change of Heart by Jude Deveraux
As a fan, the release of the book made me a little sentimental and very excited. In rereading the first portion of the book, it was still great. There was more detail in the love story of Frank and Miranda, which I highly appreciate as a reader.
The second part didn't really live up to expectations. The former best friends had so very little in common as adults. Eli was closer to his character on the first part of the book while Chelsea took a nose dive into a different person. This really disappointed me, considering how firm her character was on the first part, it just took a pitfall when she became someone different. The spark really wasn't there.
Change of Heart is a book written by famous romance author Jude Deveraux. It was released last year as a remake and continuation of a previous book, “A Holiday of Love,” which is a compilation of stories of three other authors. This one is a stand-alone with the same title, same story but more of everything. In this version, it has two parts. The first one is the story of Frank and Miranda while the second one is the story of Eli and Chelsea.
Frank Taggert, a billionaire in a huge family that constantly reproduced, was known for being a cold man both in business and in his personal life. He never really wanted the same thing. Having had enough helping his mother raise his siblings, a family of his own was just too much of a bother. Peace and privacy was all he ever really valued. After an accident that breaks his arm, he cancelled his life for a sojourn in the woods. There seemed to be something missing in his life. The realization was a costly one.
Miranda Stowe, a nurse and mother, was a consummate romantic. She believed in the goodness of people. It didn’t matter much that she was paying the mortgage, raising a child and her ex-husband hadn’t paid for child support in the last three months. Sometimes other people had it hard too and she understood that.
Eli, Miranda’s genius son, was the “guard dog” of his mother. Being too sweet and understanding, his mother attracted the worst kind of men, who abused her for it. After an offer was made for a scholarship at Princeton, Eli really wanted to go and just skip high school but his mother wouldn’t be safe without him. So he and Chelsea, his best friend, are planning on getting his mother hitched. Will they succeed?
After a few years, it seemed that the two best friends had parted ways. There were practically strangers. Eli wanted to renew the acquaintance, so he invited Chelsea for a retreat in his home. He never really forgot about her. Even after making his own fortune and growing out of his geek phase, he still wanted the same girl in high school. Can he really win her over?
Chelsea just wanted the ordeal over with. She didn’t really want to see Eli after all this time. If her mother hadn’t pressured her to it, she would have thoroughly refused. They seemed to love and adore Eli like he hung the moon or something, even when they were kids. There were a lot of better things to do than spend time with her former best friend. She was in no mood to answer his questions about why she severed their friendship. They really had nothing in common.
So this was one of the books I had wanted to read since I heard that it would be released. Jude Deveraux is one of my favorite authors. I had also read the original one from “A Holiday of Love” and thought it was a great story. This one fell short of expectations. In the first part of the book, it was quite close to the original story. I thought it was still great. In the second part of the story, that was when I got a dose of disappointment. While Eli was a bit more consistent from the first part to the second part of the book, Chelsea was a complete opposite. It was like she just took on a different role. While I understand that people can change, it was just weirdly abrupt from my perspective. The compatibility of the two characters were in question and it lacked Jude’s usual touch.
Overall, this one was just okay. The story still had the cute factor, but it really didn’t pull off the usual magic that made me a Jude Deveraux fan in the last fourteen years. I’ll wait for the next book and hopefully it would be a lot better than this one.