I don’t know if you can really call this a love story. It sometimes felt like a dramedy of errors. It would probably be best to call it a “sex story”. The “love” part, if you can call it that, came about when Josie and Beau were teenagers. We, the readers, don’t get to see how their feelings for each other developed as they grew up, and the key moments in that time of their lives are only briefly touched upon, not providing enough substance.
Most of “His One and Only” happens in the present and, even though both Josie and Beau have some heavy-duty baggage, we’re supposed to believe that a week is enough time to settle their differences, overcome their personal fears, and rekindle deeply buried emotions, after 15 years of some dramatically eventful lives.
Beau is a former quarterback that has led a life of self-indulgence fueled by fame and fortune. He now has to create a new identity for himself because he will no longer be able to play football. Add to that an emotionally distant mother, a narcissistic dead father, and a teenage love that treated him like a plague, and you have a man with so much pain and anger that he could probably have been more of a jerk than he was in the book.
Josie rejected Beau in High School because her mother would have been crushed, thinking that her daughter was making the same mistake she made as a young girl, if Josie had acknowledged her feelings for Beau and acted on them. Josie never explained this to Beau hurting him in the process and making him lash out at her in public.
Josie ended up marrying a man that was an abuser and her marriage to him had a very tragic ending. The ending is such that all the difficulties she’s going through are entirely believable. What is unbelievable is to sustain the amount of emotional abuse she gets from Beau after the physical, emotional, and psychological abuse she endured for so many years with her husband.
The idea of two emotionally starved people such as Beau and Josie healing through love is a great one. Unfortunately, their emotional and psychological healing isn’t really explored in this novel. However much they enjoy their time between the sheets, the issues Beau and Josie are dealing with can’t really be resolved with a week of non-stop sex.
I wish Ms. Taylor had not given Beau and Josie such huge personal problems to conquer, because the character development required to work them out is greater than the one allowed by a 200 page novel.
Beau’s blindness gives the love scenes a bit of a twist as does the fact that both Beau and Josie seem to be sleeping together out of insecurity. Beau’s because he doesn’t think Josie would be with him any other way and Josie because she thinks she’s being paid to “scratch an itch”. The emotional bonding that’s supposed to be taking place between Josie and Beau and increasing the intimacy of their relationship isn’t credible because of this, and that makes the scenes, regardless of their graphicness and heat, rather bland.
Write to you soon.