by Lisa Marie, contemporary (2009)
Liquid Silver Books, $5.75, ISBN 978-1-59578-529-9
Fans of May-December romances with the woman being the older person in the relationship, here's one for you. Lisa Marie's Two Doors Down has 31-year old heroine Melanie Taylor hooking up with 22-year old college kid Zack Conrad. He's the kid on the bike and she's the single mother who has just moved in next door. Can love really flourish between these two?
Two Doors Down could have been a decent romance under any other circumstances, but with the hero being 22 instead of, say, 29, this one doesn't quite succeed for me in this instance. Zack is an unnaturally old 22-year old prone to melodramatic speeches, and I have a hard time believing that this kid is real and not, say, an old man transplanted into a young man's body. Zack's speech pattern and mannerisms are more convincing if the author has made him older.
The author has the right idea when she has her characters talk to each other instead of having those characters merely having sex non-stop before slapping on a happy ending. That is why I said earlier that this romance would have been more believable if both characters are portrayed as older. As a 22-year old, Zach, especially, is not a believable character and I have a hard time taking him and this story seriously.
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