Friday, 1 February 2013

Iz's Journey by Doreen Perrine

On Claire’s return home from her European holiday, she buys an old Brooklyn brownstone. It needs a lot of work doing on it. The work is going to cost money, so Claire has to take a job she hates at her father’s bank.

Claire is really missing Isabelle. She can’t get her out of her mind. She can’t seem to move on either.

When Isabelle suddenly turns up in New York, Claire’s whole world is sent spinning. The two women spend time together and eventually Isabelle moves in with Claire. Both women are in love with each other. But Claire can’t seem to settle for thinking that Isabelle will one day leave her and go back to Italy.

Isabelle is estranged from her remaining family in Italy. She’s trying hard to make a new life for herself. But she is also hiding a big part of her previous life. She has to learn to trust in someone. Hopefully, that someone will be Claire, because without that trust, they can’t move on.

Claire also has to learn to trust Isabelle. It’s a two way thing. But will either woman learn to trust the other? Is there any hope for them at all?

What with Claire’s past with her dysfunctional family and the dark secrets Isabelle is hiding, it is going to be an uphill battle to hold the relationship together. Will they have a chance at a happy ever after?

This book is well written, follows on from Clara’s Story and continues with the lives of Isabelle and Claire. It’s a bit darker than the first book and we finally get to hear all of Claire’s and Isabelle’s secrets. Secrets that have molded both women into the women they’ve become. Both women now have something to fight for, their love for one another.

We have the same characters as the first book and some new ones to help progress the story along. All these characters are multidimensional and interact well together. All are real and true to life. I’ve certainly met some like them myself.

This book could be read as a standalone, but I would strongly advise reading Clara’s Story first to get the complete background on the characters, their families and friends. Also you would be missing out on a really good book if you don’t read it.

This is far more than a romance between Claire and Isabelle. It’s actually quite heart breaking to read some of the things that have happened to these characters. Claire’s family go beyond being a typical dysfunctional family. Her mother is a truly vicious and horrid woman, her sister isn’t far behind her. When it comes to a point where Claire and her brother have to choose between keeping their mother happy or being happy themselves, I felt myself getting really hot under the collar and hoping they would choose their own happiness and that of their respective partners.

I’m not sure if there will be another book with Claire and Isabelle. I hope so. I love both characters and all their friends. I think they have a lot more they can say to us. But the book most definitely did conclude.

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