By Patrick Dilloway (aka Grumpy Bulldog)
Full disclosure: I wrote this book. But I hadn't read it in years. Then someone mentioned a scene from it and I realized I didn't really remember it too well, so I thought I'd go back and reread it. Not having read it in so long I think I'm almost as objective as a regular reader.
This is what I would consider a Nicholas Sparks-type scenario. Gary Sinclair is sad and lonely in the little town of Dagger Lake, Michigan. One cold October night he's patrolling the beach to pick up the litter left by the summer tourists and finds something far more important washed up on shore: a naked body! It turns out to be a young woman who is alive. There's just one problem: she has no memory of who she is or where she came from or how she ended up by the lake.
Gary takes her to his house and since he looks kind of like his old girlfriend Andrea, that's the name he gives her. At first Gary tries not to get too involved with Andrea, but finds he can't help himself. The more time he spends with her, the more he loves her. And with all the kindness and tenderness he's shown her, she loves him too.
Some stories would end there, but "Virgin Territory" goes a step further. Five years later we pick up with Andrea and Gary trying to make a life together. But Andrea's desire to have a family starts to drive a wedge between them. Can their love survive?
As a somewhat objective reader, I like the first part better, where Gary and Andrea are falling in love. There are a few things I think are a little rushed, that I could have drawn out a little more. The finished product is less than 60,000 words so it's not like the story was too long.
The second part gets a little darker than your standard Nicholas Sparks story. Then there's a surprise twist. Maybe you can see it coming or maybe you can't. I think it makes for a satisfying conclusion, but you might think differently.
Anyway, the story is less than a dollar--FREE if you have Amazon Prime--so I think I got my money's worth out of it and so should you if you're looking for a good love story.
That is all.