Book Review: Only One Woman by Christina Jones and Jane Risdon
Title: Only One Woman
Author(s): Christina Jones and Jane Risdon
Genre: Romance, Contemporary Women
Publisher: Accent Press (November 21, 2017)
Kindle Pages: 492 Pages
Two women, one love story. June 1968. Renza falls head over heels for heartthrob guitarist Scott. But after a romantic summer together they are torn apart when Renza’s family moves away. December 1968. On the night she believes to be her last, Stella meets Scott at a local dance. He’s the most beautiful boy she’s ever seen and if this one night is all they have, she’ll take it. As the final colorful year of the sixties dawns, the question is: can there be only one woman for Scott?
Youth, love, and a beautiful rock God could only mean one thing . . . and the reader will ache for both heroines as the novel pulls them into love, travel, good music, and wrenching heartache.
Only One Woman grabbed my attention from the first diary entry of love-stricken Renza and held my fascination to the very last page. Though I grew up post-sixties, I’ve always been fascinated by the music of this era. The author’s extensive knowledge and repertoire of 60’s music had me singing favorite lyrics as I delved into Renza and Stella’s worlds.
Ingeniously crafted, we experience the two heroine’s lives, loves, and heartache through their diaries. And through their personal experiences, we meet Scott and his fabulous Rock Band, Narnia’s Children.
Inherently different, the two heroines are raised by parents with a different set of standards and values. Sweet and prudently innocent, Renza lives with her authoritarian mother who wields control like a prison guard. Edgy and stylishly bold, Stella, recovering from a debilitating illness, lives with her liberal, easy-going, and loving parents who allow her many freedoms as an only child. Though Renza and Stella have different upbringings, they have four things in common, their love for Scott, music, reading, and writing.
Both women tugged at my heart, and I found myself rooting for both, but as the titles suggest, there can only be one woman for the devastatingly sexy Scott. At times, I grew angry at the heroine’s naiveté, and spoke under my breath, “Wise up!” On several occasions, I wished I could reach through my Kindle and thoroughly shake sense into all three, especially Scott. Such heartache and havoc he wreaks unknowingly? Did he know? That would call for an additional diary containing Scott’s thoughts. But the reader senses he’s torn and struggles with his decisions.
The authors kept me guessing which heroine would succeed victoriously in capturing Scott’s eternal love, and wondering if they’d both be better off without him. This book would be fantastic on the screen with the fashionable, colorful clothing, and music of the sixties set in several lovely locations. Hmm… I hope! Thank you, Ms. Jones and Ms. Risdon for a fantastic read!
Jane Risdon Bio
Some of these experiences have found their way into her short stories about the Music Business, and she is presently working on a novel which will bring a lot of her more crazy ‘rock ‘n roll’ experiences into one tome. Her main focus remains crime, however, and she is working on a series of novels called ‘Ms Birdsong Investigates’ centered around a glamorous ex MI5 Officer forced into early retirement, who is trying to keep a low profile in a rural village in Oxfordshire. Her past experiences come to the fore when she finds herself investigating murder. Soon she finds herself back on old territory with Russian Mafia, Ukrainian People Traffickers, and an old flame to deal with.
In 2014 Jane signed a publishing contract with Accent Press Ltd. In addition to her books and short stories for publication by Accent, Jane has also published many short stories in paperbacks, ebooks and online with other publishers. Jane has published and had pod-cast many of her short stories and pieces of flash fiction and links to these are available via her blog, Jane Risdon Author at http://wp.me/2dg55. Voice Over actor, Elijah Lucien has recorded several of her short stories which are available on YouTube.
Jane is a keen photographer and enjoys the countryside and visiting old buildings and historical locations and often uses photos as visual notes for her writing. She loves history and archaeology and is loves anything to do with science and astronomy. With a background (early on in her career) in the Diplomatic Service in Whitehall, London, followed by a long career in International music, Jane has a wealth of experience and a huge pool from which to craft her stories.
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Christina Jones Bio
Writing for a living is wonderful – a dream come true – and I now manage to combine writing novels, short stories and articles with not doing the housework, not doing the gardening, not cooking much, but at least attempting to look after my husband – the Toyboy Trucker – and my daughter and our 17 rescued cats.
I was born in Oxford and have lived in Berkshire, Bedfordshire, Hampshire, Oxfordshire, Northumberland, London and Jersey. I blame my parents both for my itchy feet and my romantic soul. My Dad was a circus clown – Poor Billy, Prince of Laughter Makers – and my Mum who trained as a teacher, came from an army family, and had lived in six countries before she was 15. They met and fell in love while the circus was off the road and my Dad was working as Santa Claus in a department store. My Mum, at home for Christmas, was the fairy in his grotto. I was entranced by the way they met, that they were from such different backgrounds, and that their love for one another managed to survive every obstacle and objection thrown in its path. Every book I’ve written has their story at its core.
I grew up in a Berkshire village, in a tight, happy, secure and very working-class community. My childhood was idyllically happy, and my friends from those days are still my best friends now. My novels reflect this community spirit, and all have small groups of people – crossing class, age and gender – who are friends and work together through the roller coaster ride of life. Also, because the women I grew up with were, by necessity, tough and go-getting with a sense of humor, my heroines are gutsy and strong. Real women in real situations. And the fact that the backgrounds to my books mirror my own past experiences is no coincidence, either.
My parents were great storytellers and avid readers and taught me to read long before I started school, so I started writing my own stories at about five years old without thinking it in the least odd. Writing was an obsession, a friend, a way of life. I had my first short story published at 14, still blissfully unaware this was unusual. However, having a novel published was my life’s ambition – and one that took another thirty writing years to achieve.
Having won a couple of awards for my short stories, I joined the Romantic Novelists’ Association in 1993, and was lucky enough to be voted runner-up for the New Writers’ Scheme Award at my second attempt in 1995. Dancing in the Moonlight was published by My Weekly Story Library, and as it didn’t have an ISBN wasn’t classed as a novel. I was, of course, ecstatic at this literary elevation – and it was at the RNA Awards Lunch that I was approached by an agent who suggested I should try writing full-length commercial fiction. Going the Distance was the result, and amazingly it was sold to a publisher straight away and then, equally amazingly, chosen for the 1997 WH Smith Fresh Talent Promotion – and I haven’t (touch wood and fingers and all other extremities crossed!) – looked back since.
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