Joe’s Wife

The Mistaken Widow

The Doctor’s Wife

Marry Me . . . Again
by Cheryl St. John
(Silh. Sp. Ed. #1558, PG, $4.75) ISBN 0-373-24558-0
Third-year OB/GYN resident Brynna Shaw accepts a dance with gorgeous Devlin Holmes at a local bar. Before she can say, “I must have left my brains at home,” she finds herself in bed with him. What’s even more bizarre, three days later she’s on the way to Nevada to marry the hunk. To say that these two know each other is like saying that you know nutrition after reading the label on a can of veggies.

The story really begins when Brynna and Dev have been married for eight months. By now their differences have become apparent. Brynna is settled and has predictable day-to-day activities due to her occupation. Dev, while not a ne’er-do-well, is more spontaneous. He enjoys flying, and each day may find him in a different location. Brynna worries that their differences may be too much for them to make the marriage successful.

Part of my problem with this book is the amount of Brynna’s introspection. Worrying about their differences after an impulsive marriage is a bit like moaning over pink underwear after you’ve forgotten that a red T-shirt was in the wash. Another scenario that always raises my romantic ire is how people pick mates with characteristics that prey on their deep fears. When the Air Force widow falls in love with the airline pilot, that predictable problem always raises a red flag on my romantic radar.

Brynna has parents that always seemed to be preoccupied with pursuits that left their family with little parental attention. Now she’s worrying that Dev’s “underlying wanderlust” means that he’s not ready for the compromises that a successful marriage requires.

Announcing her pregnancy, Brynna seems to be waiting for Dev to disappoint her. And it’s no surprise when she is disappointed. That disappointment seems to be a self-fulfilling prophecy. What happens after that becomes tedious and annoying.

This couple’s metronome approach to their relationship was the major reason that I didn’t appreciate this story. There were just too many incidents of the country western cliché: He/she done me wrong. I like a story with real conflicts, not mental ones, that may or may not be resolved. The resolution for most mental conflicts just seems too arbitrary, having no more substance than a puff of smoke. Give me actual conflicts not imagined ones.

Life and romance books are too short for imagined conflicts. If Brynna and Dev had begun to work together on their marriage, instead of analyzing imagined slights to death, this story would have been much more interesting. I’m not sure that Dr. Phil would have the patience to help these two.

--Linda Mowery

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