Several months ago I read Elizabeth the First Wife by Lian Dolan. I enjoyed it quite a bit and looked forward to reading Helen of Pasadena. When I finally saw it at the library I snatched it up and safely stowed it in my rather spacious library bag. I was salivating to read it since I had enjoyed Elizabeth the First Wife so much.
First let me say that I did enjoy the story, but I was quite distracted by the amount of swearing. Just when I’d be getting settled in one would come popping off the page to hit me squarely between the eyes. I started to feel punch drunk. The sad things is that the foul language was completely unnecessary to the plot line.
Helen’s life is turned upside down when her husband rams into one of the fabulous Rose Bowl Parade floats and is killed. She tells no one that he dies while texting his new girlfriend. After all he hadn’t announced that they were going to get divorced so he could marry a younger rich woman. Appearances, you know.
After his death Helen discovers that all the money is gone. There is nothing left. Even her rich mother in law can’t help since she lost money in her son’s investments. Helen decides to put her house up for sale and look for a job. Her teenage son has a hard time dealing with all the changes.
Between getting her house ready and all her volunteer commitments, Helen manages to find a great job as a research assistant for Dr. Patrick O’Neill, an archaeologist working on the site of Troy. He just happens to be working at the Huntington for the next several months. There is immediate chemistry when they meet.
The story is fun if you can handle the language. I still think I enjoyed Elizabeth the First Wife more.