When destiny strikes twice and you meet the same person you ought to forget as the once who has fired you and then once more meet her and need to come to truce and end up helplessly attracted to her, but she won’t let down the walls surrounding her heart, now that’s a hell of a ride.
The second conflict results out of the main characters’ opposing jobs: an obstetrician and a midwife, whom have to work together on a combined program for their patients.
I was absolutely surprised by both and found this book endeavoring.
Although, the main character is dr. Hollis Monroe (I love her first name, by the way, wisely chosen), I will start with Annie.
Why? Because, in my opinion, Annie is the more sensitive one, fragile and went through a hell a lot.
Annie Colfax’s origins reside from a Menonite family, whom was similar to the Amish lifestyle: they stayed away from the real world in a close community, growing their own crops and eating what they grew, they didn’t accept modern medicine, nor unmarried mothers.
When Annie walked away from that community in search of her destiny, living for real for the first time, she gets hurt by the man she most trusted: her college professor, Jeff, who has been nice and kind and had introduced her into this new world, taught her everything and intimacy followed as the normal flow, but then all ended and Jeff has abandoned her when she found out she was pregnant.
Since then Annie has been all alone and God be blessed, with her child.
Annie’s life and heart were broken into pieces and she had to gather them and somehow stiched them together again, for her child, for own self to go on.
She has almost had a miscarriage and was brought to hospital and one Dr. Hollis Monroe, at the beginning of her career, helped her give birth to her daughter, Callie, being the first person who ever saw her. But, the bleeding won’t stop and Annie passed out and Hollis didn’t have time to ask for her permission, but she had to save her life and remove her uterus.
When Annie woke and wants to see her baby, Hollis had to tell her the worst part too and Annie never forgave her and asked for anther medic to take care f her from that moment onward.
After four years, Annie has a settled life, she has a beautiful daughter, whom she has raised on her own and she had a wonderful job, she was a midwife and helped families who wished to give birth to their children at home. Only in cases of emergency she called the ambulance for help, rare occasions.
Her manager appointed her to run a project they had together with the hospital to promote that midwifes also helped in the hospitals. Of course, she would have face angry doctors, especially surgeons, who all that care about was operating, even when unnecessary.
She has never expected to meet Hollis.
That’s when destiny struck twice.
Dr. Hollis Monroe was an accomplished obstetrician surgeon, helping women in high emergency cases to give birth to healthy children and be healthy themselves, she was doing her job perfectly, yet she was a lonely woman. She brought an old Victorian home, which she was restoring herself, in her free time, having no time for social life.
She came from a beautiful family who raised her and her brothers without making differences in their growing up, helped her choose the career she desired, supported her.
Everything broke to pieces when on 9/11 her brother being a firefighter, died when he tried to save the people in the twin towers, but he was there because she has failed to meet him, as establishes, instead she spent her day with her lover Sonja.
She couldn’t forgive herself, this was her demon.
When she met Annie the first time, she did all her best for her child to be healthy and for Annie to live, really live, that’s why she did everything.
She was hurt when Annie has dismissed her, but she understood why and stepped aside.
When she met Annie the second time, she expected the storm, but was never ready for the pain Annie’s hurt look in her eyes felt like.
Annie has never forgiven her and this program that was supposed to bring midwives in the hospital was foolish enough, but now this.
From this moment, Hollis’s acts become a mixture of searching Annie’s forgiveness and making the project work, she gave it much attention, because it was about Annie.
What Hollis never expected, was to find Annie incredibly attractive, her blond wavy hair and green eyes were making her mad and she wasn’t gay at all, and Hollis never fell for straight women, yet here was Annie.
Annie who the day after her big argument asked her forgiveness, as it wasn’t her fault and Annie too, wanted that project to work, even if she would be substituted.
What Annie never expected, was to find Hollis incredibly attractive, so self-confident and beautiful, she could drown into those beautiful blue fountains of life and her long dark hair she just longed to touch, as much as Hollis’ toned body.
It is a mess, neither woman admits her feelings, yet they are drown together by their jobs and as a fact, they manage to know much more there is about each other and understand what has happened the first time their met, what their lives have been and what they turned to be now. Hollis met Callie, Annie’s daughter and fell in love with her.
From the party that ended in thunderstorm and Hollis brought Annie and Callie to shelter, she knew that’s all she ever wanted in her life.
I loved how Raddclyffe has written the evolution of their relationship, how they think about each other, how anger turns to respect, desire and love.
The characters are strong and fragile in the same time, their impact on each other is rather abrupt or tender, yet has the same finale, budding love through bursting desire.
Hollis watches Annie at work with pregnant women in their homes and Annie watches Hollis bring babies into the world and healthy mothers. Their attraction to each other grows and they are privately acknowledge it, but Annie is afraid, although she knows how wonderful Hollis is.
Hollis is also a skilled cyclist and she teaches Callie how to ride a bike and establish a good relationship with her.
But, when Hollis kisses Annie and tells her she doesn’t want a one night stand, but her heart, Annie freezes and runs away, gets out of the program.
The turning point is when an acquaintance of both has Annie as midwife, but things are getting complicated and Annie asks for Hollis’s help and they are once more brought together.
Hollis saves the day, but she’s panting after Annie, she has never desired someone that much in her life, and she couldn’t have her.
Annie saw the flicker of desire in Hollis’ eyes, that matched her own, that Hollis confessed so many times and she knew that if Hollis wanted someone, she will have her, and Annie was ready.
I loved this part when their desires blurted and they go crazy one for another in their desperate lovemaking.
Another beautiful surprise is when Annie confesses Hollis that she is her first woman. And Hollies appreciated that the right way, making love to her like no other.
Of course, they get married and live happily ever after with Callie.
I loved the mixture of “special effects” in this book, reflected in the details that made the difference : the midwife and the surgeon, the good and the bad family, the self imposed loneliness as self defense, the hurt after losing someone, all these contradictions and similarities have created and amazing plot with complex characters.