cover image As Good as the First Time

As Good as the First Time

K.M. Jackson. Dafina, $7.99 mass market (384p) ISBN 978-1-4967-1709-2

Jackson’s contemporary story of reunited lovers is a decent if unremarkable series launch. After Olivia Gale’s business-minded boyfriend dumps her and she gets fired on the same day, she agrees to help out with the family bakery in Sugar Lake, Ga. Her aunt Joyce, who runs the bakery, has taken a nasty fall and really needs Olivia’s assistance. Returning home, however, places Olivia squarely in the path of firefighter Clayton Morris, who broke her heart when they were teenagers and is currently living in the house next door with his preteen daughter. Following a fire at the bakery, Olivia and Clayton keep running into each other. Through a tense game of pool and an incident with an anthill, Clayton does his best to show her that he’s changed. The slow redevelopment of Clayton and Olivia’s relationship founders a bit on the shoals of Olivia’s uncertainty and dithering, but readers will cheer her on toward her decision to give Clayton a second chance. Contemporary romance fans who don’t mind a slow story will enjoy relaxing with this one. Agent: Evan Marshall, Evan Marshall Agency. (Nov.)