The One That I Want by Allison Winn Scotch
Tilly Farmer is living her ideal life. She is married to her high school sweetheart and still in touch with her best friend from high school who is, in turn, married to her high school sweetheart. Plus, Tilly works at her old high school as a guidance counselor, where one of her major responsibilities is helping to plan the prom, one of her favorite events of all time. Life is going swimmingly; she might even possibly be pregnant, although it is far too early to tell.
But then she runs into an old high school friend working as a fortune teller. Instead of giving Tilly a reading, she says she is going to give her a gift, the gift of clarity. Suddenly, Tilly begins seeing bits and pieces of things before they happen. Bad things. Things that upset the idyllic life that Tilly is leading. Things that force her to decide what she really wants out of life.
I read Allison Winn Scotch’s last book, “Time of My Life” last year and now I’m convinced that picking up one of her books guarantees me a good read.
I think my very favorite thing about Winn Scotch’s books – at least the ones I’ve read – is the way she works in something slightly mystical and yet still somehow manages to keep the book firmly grounded in reality. In “The One That I Want,” Tilly is getting what basically amounts to premonitions, in “Time of My Life” Jillian basically gets sent into an alternate version of her life. Although some of the plot elements are fantastical, I get just as caught up in these women’s lives as if I knew them in real life.
Tilly was so incredibly satisfied with the way her life was going and so adverse to change that she could easily have been incredibly obnoxious. Instead, I found her incredibly sympathetic and felt that I could get inside her head sufficiently to understand where she was coming from and what had made her the way she was.
In addition to the great characterization, I also love the way Winn Scotch writes. She has lovely prose without being too poetic and long winded. In a time when I feel so many books are overwritten and too long, “The One That I Want” weighed in at a perfect length of 288 pages – enough time to fully work through all of the plot points, but not enough time to be overly long and lose my attention.
“The One That I Want” is fantastic, as is (it seems) all of Allison Winn Scotch’s work. I highly recommend this as a fun summer read.
I have three copies to give away in the US and Canada, but Allison also has a contest going on for those who buy the book by June 4th, so check it out! You can win lots of great prizes.
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