July 21, 2014

Book Review: Love on Location by Claire Baxter

At First Sight: Everything seems to be falling into place for Shayna, a location scout who is about to become location manager of a production for the first time in her career - a move that will take her one step closer to her dream of working in Hollywood. All she needs to do is find the perfect house for a high profile mini-series and the manager job is hers.

Luckily, she just found the perfect house, un-luckily the house's owner (and it's architect) wants nothing to do with the entertainment business and quickly runs Shayna off the property.

Lachlan might now spend his days designing beautiful homes and running a very successful architectural firm, but once upon a time he was a child-star, and part of a family that is considered royalty in the Australian entertainment business. A business that cost Lachlan his childhood, adolescence, first love and relationship with his parents.

But Shayna isn't one to give up and she keeps coming around, trying to convince Lachlan to let her use his house, and the more time he spends with her the more attracted Lachlan is to Shayna, making it very hard for him to keep saying no.

Second Glance: There was a lot I liked about this lovely Aussie romance (thanks, Random House Australia!). Even though the story is on the short side, I really got a sense of whom Lachlan and Shayna were and what drove them.

Shayna dreams of hollywood because, as a child in the foster care system, movies gave her something to strive for even when her life was bleak, and Lachlan has some really serious issues with his family because of the way he was raised to always be "on" for the cameras. And yet, they are pretty nice, well-adjusted adults and, in Shayna's case, even optimistic. I liked them.

I loved Shayna's job and how passionate she was about it - you do get a sense of what being a location scout and manager entails and how they are different to each other - it was pretty unusual, which I always adore.

There were a couple of downsides, though, like the fact the screw up/misunderstanding near the end of the story were a bit over the top for me (but I'll say that it was within character for the most part). And the fact that Lachlan basically lets Shayna use his house in the end because he wants to get into her pants. It's no actually sleazy but it did rub me the wrong way when it was happening. 

Other than that, I really enjoyed the story.

Bottom Line: I do recommend Love on Location a lot, it was a lovely, quick read that actually turned out to be one of the better contemporaries I've read this year. I really liked both main characters and Shayna's work in particular. 

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