Hadley’s trip to London started out like a day from hell. She didn’t want to go in the first place. After all, who wants to see your own father put the final coffin on his marriage with your own mother? Who wants to see the soon-to-be stepmother take your father away from you? A lot of arguments has been had about why she had to go. But a lot of her reasons for not going fell on deaf ears anyway. Claustrophobic, she was already on edge with the thought of the seven-hour trip across the Atlantic in the seemingly tiny cabin of the plane. To top it all off, she missed her flight. But serendipity seems to be at play as she meets a Brit boy who manages to calm her nerves and distract her from all her distress. Time passes and in the blink of an eye, their plane lands in Heathrow. Hadley’s anxiety doubles as the thought of not seeing Oliver again gives her something else to be nervous about.
The thing is, I’ve always been the type of who cannot be emphatic to men who cheats and unfortunately, Hadley’s father is one of those men. I don’t know why, but stories that involved a broken family never fails to squeeze my heart as if it were on a vise-grip. I wanted Hadley to stick it to her old man. I wanted her to throw that book in his face and tell him how much of a selfish person he was. Jennifer E. Smith did a fantastic job of convincing me that Hadley’s hatred is well placed and the downside of this was that she did it so well that she was also unable to convince me to forgive Hadley’s father quite as easily. By the end of the book, I was feeling sour and raw with the lack of confrontation between Hadley and her father. And I cannot, for the life of me, reconcile Dicken’s Our Mutual Friend as his father’s way of explaining all the reasons why he left or if it was his way of asking for her forgiveness. Have you ever wanted to face punch a character so bad? That’s pretty much how I felt about her father.
Anyway, on to brighter things. I was in awe of Oliver’s reason for his trip back home. I never saw that coming. For some reason, I was under the impression that Oliver and Hadley were going to meet at the same wedding. Predictable, huh? But I was dead wrong. The emotional heavy came from both Oliver’s and Hadley’s respective family situations. It was a one-two punch. So much so that the romance actually took a back seat. I thought that it was brilliant; initially selling the fluff only to find that this novel was so much more than a boy-meets-girl romance.