by Fern Michaels

January 2004
ISBN: 0-7434-5793-5
Reviewer Graphic Button Pocket Books
Mass Market Paperback

Although she’s had success with previous books, LATE BLOOMER falls short of being a book most reader-fans will want to recommend for first time readers of Ms. Michaels.

Surrounding the mystery and heartache that a twenty year old childhood accident caused, several people are brought back together as the heroine, Cady Jordan returns to her Pennsylvania hometown. Cady’s grandmother needs care, but will actually prove to be the strength Cady needs to finally face the past and resolve the heartache that has scarred her for so long.

The story revolves slowly and is mixed with humor, growing-love, past guilt, and the slight mystery that surrounds the accident Cady was accused of causing. She battles her inner demons, determined to remember the full truth, all the while interacting with the other characters involved.

This reviewer found the story too slow to hold interest. I was disappointed in the almost too-immature dialogue the characters used. It was as if none of them had actually grown up since that time twenty years back. The ending even read as though it came from a young adult book rather than an adult Contemporary Romance. I admire the author’s attempt at bringing into awareness the plight of abused animals, especially dogs, but felt that some of her situations were too easily resolved, and her facts not quite logical when it came to having the abused dogs so readily adjust.

Never the less, this author attempted to write a story that was based on the beautiful concept of redemption and forgiveness, and she accomplishes this with Late Bloomer, despite the awkward character developments. Enjoyable enough for a afternoon read.

Reviewed in April 2004 by Kari.

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