I try not to have regrets in life... they don't work, they only hurt. Right? So, if I were to list all the regrets in my life, it would be pretty short. One of those items was that I never took the time and focus to write something publishable. I've always loved to write and I used to produce some fairly decent fiction. Now, with a husband, demanding job, and a toddler, I doubt I'll ever be able to accomplish that dream.
But one of my good friends has. And I am so proud of her.
I had written previously about her first work, The Undesirable, sometime earlier this year. But her latest work, a novella entitled "The Palms," is much more my speed. Somewhere along the lines of obtaining all those things in life that keep me insanely busy and focused elsewhere, I shifted my choice reading material from the likes of John Irving to the pages of Kathy Griffin's memoir. I like my reads to be light and easy and fun. And that's exactly what I found "The Palms" to be.
OK... so the material may have not been super light and easy (Lauren returns to Palm Beach and runs into Trent Matthews, a guy who broke her heart years earlier) but it was such a smooth read, that I stayed up late one night and finished it in two quick sittings. I was totally transported to the Palm Beach scene. And knowing the author, I could see her in every page. Which, I must admit, was pretty cool. Her descriptions of the bar at The Breakers Hotel and the diner where they met for breakfast were spot on and I envisioned the scenes in my mind as I read.
The one thing I hadn't expected to happen as I read? It reminded me of all the previous vacation romances I've had in my life. (OK... so there haven't been THAT many... and to call them "romances" is pretty far-fetched.) Immediately I went into a tailspin of "What if I had gone back to the hotel with Nicky that night?" or "Whatever happened to Johnny?"
I've already written about my first real date ever (HERE) with Nicky the valet boy while I was on vacation in Maui. At 13 years my senior, plus that fact that he lived in, oh, Hawaii, there was never any doubt that wasn't going to extend past a make-out session slammed against a palm tree. But oh, did I hope. Yup - that's what 17 year old girls do.
I've never really talked too much about Johnny. But he's really one of my best stories. I like to share it whenever I get drunk. Or am hitting on a guy. Because for some reason, I think that others want to hear about my escapades around Europe with a Kiwi bus driver. Oh yeah... and then there was that other Kiwi bus driver, Nigel, a few years later actually in New Zealand. But I wouldn't exactly call that a scenario where I find myself wondering "What if?"
Give yourself a gold star if you've picked up on a trend in the type of men I go for. Ha ha ha!
The point of all of this is to give my friend's novella, "The Palms" two big ol' thumbs up. I know she is working diligently on a follow-up that focuses on the bartender you meet at the start of the story. I could totally fall for a character like Trent Matthews, but I think I might end up liking Jason the bartender even more. I always had a thing for the guy that wasn't necessarily the obvious hunk. So, even though summer is wrapping up, that doesn't mean you can't take a few minutes to relive the warm breezy days and delve into their world for a while longer.