Wednesday, January 24, 2024

Book Review: Baby, One More Time

By Sara Steven

Driven and smart, Marissa Mayer has worked her way to COO at a major Fintech startup as well as launching her own successful app on the side. Now what she wants more than anything is a baby. And having given up on love after her heart was broken by the boy next door, she’s prepared to do it alone.

Recently returning to New York from LA, Dr John Raikes is an expert in his field of neonatal medicine. But when John introduces himself as Marissa’s doctor, sparks fly, and not in a good way. Because Dr John Raikes is no he’s her teenage sweetheart all grown up.

Marissa knows she should keep John at arm’s length, lest she have her heart broken again... But there’s something about a man in a white coat. And with John determined to show Marissa he’s changed, can she keep saying no when her heart is saying yes? (Synopsis courtesy of Goodreads.)

I read the first book in the True Love series, so I was super excited to delve into Baby, One More Time! The way that Marissa runs into John could be described as cutesy cringeworthy! An unexpected switch up of doctors means that she is forced into facing the guy who broke her heart when they were teens, an experience that she has been avoiding and doing everything she can to steer clear of, going so far as to make sure family members who are still in touch with John, won’t tell her anything about his life and what he’s been doing. It’s obvious that she is very affected by their past, which is why their fateful meeting is even more emotionally charged–among other things. Their meet-up in some ways was very reminiscent of some scenes and scenarios of what Jane from the tv show, Jane the Virgin goes through, where her pregnancy is concerned. Hence the cringe!

John sets out to show Marissa just how much he has changed. He’s no longer the teenage boy she remembers. But that’s part of the problem. Marissa had fallen in love with teen John, which is why it’s so hard for her to move on. She admits that she has denied herself the opportunity for a serious relationship because she has such a hard time trusting, while John had moved on, going through a shaky divorce and trying desperately to keep his little family from dealing with the heartbreak that can come from that. It was interesting to see how that dynamic plays out. I felt like there were a lot of moments where Marissa turns inward and could even be seen as a bit self-absorbed, due to the past, but given what John is dealing with, it forces her to come out of that shell and start seeing him as more than just the guy who broke her heart.

Readers get to re-familiarize themselves with characters from the first book in the series, Not in a Billion Years (reviewed here). Blake is Marissa’s best friend, and Gabriel is Blake’s love interest. I enjoyed getting to see what that couple went through played out through Marissa’s point of view, and it helped to move the plot along for Marissa and John, too. Blake and Marissa reminded me of the relationship I share with my childhood best friend. She has given me a lot of guidance in my own relationships over the years, including my marriage, so I can attest to what it’s like to have a close friend who is in your corner and looks out for you, wanting the best outcome. That was apparent for Marissa. 

This was truly a great addition to the series! I enjoyed the romance element, along with the strong friendships portrayed here, and I thought it was great to highlight a strong female character who does whatever she chooses to do, despite outside opinions, in order to have all she wants in life that will make her happy and fulfilled. Does that include John? Only time will tell… it was a definite five-star experience!

Thanks to Rachel's Random Resources for the book in exchange for an honest review.

Purchase Links:
Amazon US * Amazon UK * Apple

Camilla Isley is an engineer who left science behind to write bestselling contemporary rom-coms set all around the world. She lives in Italy and her first title for Boldwood, The Love Theorem, a Hollywood-meets-STEM romance, was published in June 2023.

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