I have a love/total disinterest relationship with Kristan Higgins' books. I have read all but "My One and Only," even though I own two copies of it. I love it when she gets it right, in my view; I am totally disinterested when the hero appears to be a jerk with little self-knowledge, let alone knowledge of those around him, including and especially a woman that has somehow, some way seemed to have loved him her whole life.
I generally like Ms. Higgins' heroines. They all have body issues, but the body issues change from book to book. The body issue in this book, "Until There was You," is that poor Posey just can't gain weight or boobs. This isn't just a poor, pitiful me, I can't gain weight throwaway, it does become a plot point and I have to say it worked for me, even though I can't really identify with no boobs and inability to gain weight.
Anyway, back to the story. One of the things I have had issues with in Ms. Higgins' books is that while the heroine does seem to think a lot, interact a lot, react a lot, cogitate on the hero and their (seemingly impossible) HEA a lot, the hero seems to not be aware he is even in the book until the last couple of chapters when all of a sudden, much to his surprise, maybe even discomfort, he finds himself in love and committed to being committed. I can see where this would be disconcerting for the hero because I swear, in some of the books, he doesn't even know the heroine until he realizes he is in lurve.
This book, he is front, he is center, he is flawed, he is wonderful, he shows he is able to commit and you can see the evolution of his thoughts, so totally unlike other heroes in Ms. Higgins' novels. And while those sounds a little new agey and a bit uncomfortable, it really wasn't as awful as that sounds. He has lost his first wife (to death, not just at the mall one day); he is raising a teenage daughter alone (and she is refreshingly normal, not perfect, not too-smart-ass-for-words, just seems normal); and he is running a small business. I liked him, I really liked him.
But there were a couple of brief forays into the previous plot issues of previous books (breaking so many rules of reviews here, huh, bringing up other books), where he dumps her, she begs and cries and tells him she has always and will always love him; and then he must do what he thinks is right, the only right, and he leaves her behind only to come to his senses/see other choices/decides he must live for himself, not just those who were in his world before the heroine.
As always, Ms. Higgins' gives us a quirky little town inhabited by quirky little secondary characters. These quirksters for the most part are loveable, goofy, warm and totally impossible to imagine actually being "real," but that doesn't make it less fun. One thing I do like about Ms. Higgins' books is that kids are just kids. They aren't know-it-alls, they aren't plot devices (well, for the most part) and they don't make you want to claw your eyes out because they are just so cute/precocious/perfect/evil/wise-beyond-their-years. Yes, they have issues; but they also have adults who can take care of them and respect them for themselves (yes, I know they are fictional characters).
I liked it. I liked it the most of any of Ms. Higgins' books I have read. I look forward to the next one to see if this pattern of actually getting the hero involved before he is walking down the aisle (figuratively, if not literally) continues. I may even go back and read that one I missed to see if that is the start of the trend.