(Reviewed: August 2023)
In Almost Perfect, the latest installment in E.F. Dodd’s Not Looking for Love romance series, a pediatrician falls for a bartender during a weekend getaway with friends.
Vivian “V” Walters seems to have it all together, including great friends and a fulfilling career as a doctor. But her mother believes she’s missing one thing: a suitable husband.
Despite her mother’s influence, Vivian has been abstinent for two years. So, during a weekend trip to Rochester with her girlfriends, her attraction to the charming bartender, Dave Richardson, is no surprise. Initially hesitant to engage with him, Vivian changes her mind when her best friend, Kez, pushes her to be spontaneous and have a weekend fling. Acting on this advice, Vivian invites Dave to join her for the weekend before she returns to North Carolina, igniting sparks between them.
The weekend rendezvous evolves into a more profound connection when V and Dave share a passionate night. Complexity arises, however, when Vivian returns home and realizes her mother would disapprove of Dave’s modest occupation, despite having a degree that would secure him a more esteemed career.
With her growing feelings for Dave, Vivian worries about her mother’s disapproval and the long distance. Meanwhile, Dave fears losing Vivian to someone he deems her professional equal. Will their apprehensions hinder their blossoming romance?
The story features richly depicted, relatable characters, making it effortless to cheer for the protagonists’ romance. Vivian and Dave’s repartee is lively, while the undercurrent of sexual tension adds a captivating allure that makes the narrative steadily compelling. The resonance of the tale stems from the mature interactions between Dave and Vivian, setting their romance apart. Meanwhile, the dynamic between Vivian and her friends infuses the story with an enjoyable lightheartedness.
In short, Dodd crafts mature, enchanting romances that will resonate deeply with any of the genre’s enthusiasts.
Also available as an ebook.