The Pursuit of Lucy Banning

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Title: The Pursuit of Lucy Banning
Author: Olivia Newport
Publisher: Revell
Series: Avenue of Dreams
Pages: 204
Released: May 1, 2012

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Lucy Banning may live in the exclusive Prairie Avenue but her heart lies with the orphans at the orphanage that she volunteers at. Lucy fears she will be forced to give up her charity work, because her family expects her to marry an up and coming banker from a respected family. She just doesn’t want to squeeze herself into the mold of a well dressed wife who spends most of her time and money redecorating.

Will Edwards is an unconventional young architect who’s working on plans for the 1893 World’s Fair. When he meets Lucy, he knows something is different about her. He finds himself liking her more and more and is confident she feels the same, something quite unusual for an engaged woman. Which makes him feel that she isn’t going to go through with the wedding. Making him hopeful that he might win her over.

But will he win her over or will she just shrug off his advances? Will Lucy be able to break away from her family’s expectations or will she go through with it to make her family happy?
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I picked this book because the cover drew me in. I expected the book to live up to the cover quality and I have to say that it didn’t. The history and details were absolutely fascinating and accurate, but, as we all know, a book can’t live on just the setting. I found the most important part of the story lacking greatly, the plot. It’s not that the story wasn’t interesting, it was, just probably not in the way I would have preferred.

The story chugged along at a semi boring pace for about half the book, then things kinda started spiraling into areas you never would’ve guessed would’ve been touched on. I mean we’re talking stalkers and mystery that really make almost no sense. Plus the secrets aren’t really big secrets because no one really freaks out too badly over them.

Also, the supposed romance isn’t really there. They have a few meetings and now they’re in love? It confused me and left me feeling gypped. Not to mention left me sorely disappointed in my hopes that I was going to get a really good romance.

The mystery made no real sense nor did it enhance the story at all. In fact it actually took away from other aspects that could’ve used that time and attention. I figured out who it was long before I was supposed to and it made that experience a little on the boring side. Making it another portion that I had to try and read through.

Despite all this, I will admit that this author has potential and the time she takes in the history of her books is evident and adds a bit to the books. I think this choice was a safe choice for her and she tried to break out from the crowd but I wasn’t sure she did it quite right. Do I intend to finish the series? Yes. Do I look forward to more by her? Yes. I look forward to seeing how she improves and prospers. I just don’t think this book was it.

Overall, I didn’t like it but maybe you will. I recommend it for beginning romancers and people who want something different from a new author. I give this book a two and a half out of five.

I received this complimentary copy from Revell specifically for this review. All opinions expressed are my own.

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