Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Reaction to When One Night Isn't Enough

Remember when I won a free UK copy of Wendy S. Marcus' When One Night Isn't Enough?  Well, it came in yesterday, and I finished sometime last night.  I thought I might do a review of it, but then I realized I would be strutting into Between the Lines' territory, and I didn't want to start a turf war that could disrupt the very fabric of space and time.  So instead of writing a review, I've decided to write a reaction to it.

My initial reaction: I liked it very much.  It's not a long book at all; Chapter 1 begins on page 8 and the story ends at page 202, and I was able to finished it in about ten or so hours.  Wendy's writing style is enjoyable; you never feel like you're slogging through useless information.  Her style is fast-paced and dialogue-filled, but it never feels rushed or slapped together.  Everything fits.  The scenes progress in a logical order.  The characters mature and come together in a way that's believable.  Best of all, you're never lost.  You always know who's talking, who's doing what, and what's going on.  Even when the scenes get technical - there's a few scenes where characters will yell out some hospital lingo - you don't feel abandoned.  It happens, you sort of understand it, you move on.  It doesn't trap you in a whirlpool of Stat, IV, and fallopian tubes.

The sex happens in Chapter 2 and keeps happening occasionally, which is a nice touch in a romance novel.  Sometimes the sex happens and then never happens again, and it's like biting into a jelly doughnut only to find some jelly and a whole bunch of nothing.  This is so not the case with Wendy.  The sex is there, it keeps coming back, and it's some of the best sex you will ever have.

But really, for me, what kept me reading was Allison and Jared.  There were times when I wanted to take both of them by the shoulders and shake them and yell at them and tell them to leave their pasts behind them and just get together already!  I wanted to tell Allison that it didn't matter what she did when she was teenager, that here was a perfectly good man for her and just go for him and let go of her expectations.  I wanted to tell Jared that he was being a bit of a jerk sometimes and that he needed to stop thinking all women were the same and that Allison was amazing and perfect for him.  It got frustrating sometimes to watch them fall apart over their pasts and pick at one another and ruin each others' efforts at creating a relationship, but I think that's a good sign that I was reacting like that.  Wendy's characters are so strong and likable that you want to reach into the book universe pull the strings yourself.  That, my friends, is good storytelling, and I bow down to Wendy's superb skill.

Allison and Jared's relationship/follies actually resonated quite strongly with me, and made me take a step back and reevaluate my own relationship and how I was self-defeating myself in the same way Allison did to herself.  There was one scene near the end that I refuse to ruin because it's beautiful and you should all read it, where Allison just completely nay-says everything Jared tries to tell her, tries to convince her of.  I almost started crying because I realized that's what I've been doing for so long without realizing how it hurts the other person involved so much.  It really made me wonder what I've been doing all this time, holding on to a dead and decomposed relationship because I couldn't admit it failed, while still trying to move forward with someone much better and more supportive of me.  It made me think about what I was doing, not only to myself, but to my other.  It wasn't fair of me to do that.

If I had to give When One Night Isn't Enough a rating, I would give it four and a half jelly donuts out of five.  I take half off because I was hungry and because I wanted more to read!  But no really, it's an excellent book and I would definitely recommend it to everyone who likes romance and character-driven plots.

Buy at: Nook and Kindle.  More links are available at Wendy's website here.


  1. I love Wendy and her novel sounded amazing so this one I knew I had to check out!! Thank you for your awesome and honest review.

  2. You are a gifted book reviewer, Marlena, even if this wasn’t an “official” review. :)

  3. Jen - Thanks for stopping by! Wendy is just an amazingly gifted and talented writer, and I wanted to do her novel justice.

    Michelle - You really are too nice! Thank you so much! :)

  4. This is a great review! It's nice to have such a personal view in it too :) I hope everything works out for you!

    p.s. don't worry about turf wars...you're safe! We have different interests and differens opinions so it's nice to have some variety :)

  5. Aw, thank you. I do too. (:

    As for turf wars, I'll keep that in mind. (;

  6. Hi, again, Marlena,

    I've left a response to your comment at http://michellefayard.blogspot.com/2011/07/using-amazon-to-optimize-book-sales.html. I wasn't sure how else to let you know. :)


  7. You're the best, Marlena; thank you very much!

  8. Wow! Thank you Google Alerts! And thank you Marlena for that wonderful review! (I printed it out for future reference!) I'm so happy you connected with my characters! Thank you for taking the time to share it with the blogosphere!

    (And thanks for your kind words, Jen!!!)

  9. Hi Wendy! I'm glad you liked my review! And no problem! You're a wonderful writer, and I wish you all the best success in the future.

  10. Hi Marlena,

    I agree with you about Allison and Jared and I loved the way you gave your thoughts and feelings after reading WHEN ONE NIGHT ISN'T ENOUGH!

    And can I share a secret? I've been reading for more than twenty years but I never ever expected to love a debut author's style and writing as I do with Wendy's.

    The sequels follow scenes with goal, motivation and conflict and the story flows magically.

    It seemed like she was writing about real people in situations that could happen.

    Thanks for posting such a wonderful reaction and was it really your first Medical Romance?

  11. Hi Nas! Wendy really is an amazing debut author. It's like she's been writing for years!

    And yes, it really was my first Medical Romance. I'm glad I was able to start with Wendy's!

  12. Hi Marlena,

    I hope you don't mind but I've linked your reaction post to the author page here:

    Please shoot me an email at nas_dean @ ymail.com if you're not happy about it!

  13. I've read When One Night Isn't Enough and you are spot on, Nas. It's well-crafted and well-plotted and everything else you said. Yummy! :)

  14. Hi again Nas, Regina! I don't mind at all! Thank you! And yummy is a perfect word to use, Regina. It was like chocolate cake with plenty of chocolate frosting.


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