It has the perfect mix of humor, heartache, and characters that are real enough to make you cry...and by the way...you do! Johnnie Irish lived a nightmare growing up in the hands of an abusive, cruel, and neglectful mother. It is a love story meant to steal you heart and is a story that you'll NEVER forget....Why is this author not more popular?
Maggie Mayfield is a widow living a predictable, albeit relatively boring, life as a drama teacher in a small Texas town. The town's only claim to fame is that they produced one of Hollywood's biggest comedic stars - Johnnie Irish. The extent of abuse he suffered as a child is revealed slowly over the course of this story, helping the reader to understand, and yet still be baffled by, some of the decisions Johnnie Irish makes. But they were also tender, and the reader comes to see Johnnie for who he really is. I wasn't mad at Johnnie so much for leaving (he is a bit of an anti-hero, after all), but as a wealthy celebrity, I do not like that he seemed to abandon the situation altogether.
I don't like separations really, if only the heroine had spoken up things would have been different but she was too much of a coward and had no idea how much low self-esteem the hero had, the self-loathing because of his childhood.
A young widow who missed her husband immensely, Johnnie and Maggie clashed. But Maggie showed Johnnie that there were people in this world with redeeming characteristics. Maggie and Johnnie both make mistakes.
So, while I was taking a chance on this book in that area, the "bad boy hiding his pain" trope was begging me to pick this one up. The tension was well paced though, and I never felt that it was too drawn out. Last Summer hit most of my preferences when reading romance: a bad boy hiding his pain, considerable emotional angst, a vulnerable but strong woman with whom I could identify, a strong emotional narrative without an abrupt volte face on the part of one of the characters.
Bad boy actor, Johnnie Irish, returns to his hometown where the past haunts him. Johnnie's past was not pretty and at times, straight up sad!
This is the second book of Theresa Weir's that I've read and she is so good at writing intense love stories.
She voted against having this man in the parade. But as the story continues, Maggie can see past Johnnie and his antics and see's a funny, vulnerable man.
It was first published in 1992, but don't let that keep you from enjoying this story, thinking it's dated. The only thing that dated it were some references to videotapes and VCRs. I thoroughly enjoyed this wonderful story and recommend it as a good read.
Theresa Weir (a.k.a. Anne Frasier) is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of twenty-six books and numerous short stories that have spanned the genres of suspense, mystery, thriller, romantic suspense, paranormal, fantasy, and memoir. In her more recent Anne Frasier career, her thriller and suspense titles hit the USA Today list (HUSH, SLEEP TIGHT, PLAY DEAD) and were featured in Mystery Guild, Literary Guild, and Book of the Month Club.