Title: Jilted by Rachael Johns
Publisher: Harlequin Australia
Genre: Contemporary, Romance
Length: 349 pages
Book Rating: B
Review Copy Obtained from Publisher
After more than ten years away, Australian soap star Ellie Hughes returns to the small country town of Hope Junction, determined to remain anonymous while caring for her injured godmother, Matilda.
But word spreads fast in the tight-knit community. It isn’t long before the people of Hope are gossiping about the real reason for Ellie’s visit and why she broke the heart of golden boy Flynn Quartermaine all those years ago.
Soon Ellie and Flynn are thrown back together again, forced to deal with the unresolved emotions between them. For Ellie is not the only one with secrets. Flynn has his own demons to battle, and Matilda is hiding something from her much-loved goddaughter.
When all is uncovered, can the ill-fated lovers overcome the wounds of their past? Or is Flynn destined to be jilted again?
Rachael Johns’ Jilted is an emotional story about love and forgiveness. Ten years ago, Ellie Hughes left Flynn Quartermaine at the altar and fled the small town of Hope Junction. Returning to Hope to nurse her godmother Matilda, Ellie comes face to face with the man whose heart she broke all those years ago.
Ellie Hughes is a flawed yet very sympathetic character. Abandoned by her parents, Ellie’s childhood was painful, but with Matilda and Flynn’s love, she found a measure of peace and acceptance. Until a tragic event drove her to flee from Hope Junction and Flynn. Her return to Hope is complicated by the derision of the townspeople and her former friends, but her love and loyalty to Matilda keep her firmly by Matilda’s side as she recovers from a broken ankle.
Flynn Quartermaine was absolutely devastated when Ellie jilted him on their wedding day. Mired in heartache, it took an unexpected loss to bring him out of his self-imposed exile. He shares a close relationship with his mother and sister. Although he is bitter and resentful of Ellie for her abandonment of him, he is a kind and compassionate man who finds it easy to forgive Ellie. It is his friendship that calms the town’s anger towards Ellie.
Ellie’s godmother Matilda is a delightfully eccentric but lovable character. Her relationship with Ellie is quite touching and her love for Ellie is unconditional. Her storyline is emotional and integral to the novel’s plot.
Told in third person from both Ellie and Flynn’s perspectives, the reader is well aware of the emotions they are both experiencing. But the secrets of Ellie’s past are slowly revealed and the outcome of her future with Flynn is far from certain. They share an uneasy friendship with their relationship slowly evolving over the course of the novel.
Jilted by Rachael Johns is magnificently written with engaging characters and a realistic storyline. Readers of contemporary romances will love this heartwarming and sometimes tear inducing novel.