The Great Depression looms over New York, with the jobless and the hungry devoid of hope that things will ever get better. Walt is a journalist who can’t write a story. Penniless, he spends the night at a flophouse where he meets Peter, a formerly wealthy man who is about to lose everything he has. Walt brings hope back into Peter’s life by giving him the chance to change the lives of others and in doing so finds the inspiration for a story that will kickstart his career.
I thought I would have a quick read before bed, so I opened this e-book with the expectation of reading a few pages and literally couldn’t put it down until I was finished. It’s been a while since I sat down and read a story that was a pure five star read for me, but If It Ain’t Love hit the spot perfectly. It’s a tale of darkness and light, despair and hope in a time when there was a lot of the former and not much of the latter.
Allen nails the Great Depression and its feelings of hopelessness, and yet somehow manages to make this a warm and hopeful story despite all the suffering. Walt and Peter are both good people getting through hard times, but they haven’t let it corrupt them. I felt so much warmth in this story that I found myself smiling. It’s been a while since I really felt touched to my core by a story and moved by its romance.
The writing style is excellent, giving enough details about the time and place without swamping the reader, while moving things along at a decent pace without rushing. It’s a fairly short read that you can complete in one sitting, but sometimes I prefer that to stories that meander on for two hundred pages to pad out a word count. If It Ain’t Love is short and sweet, warm and hopeful and a great read. Even better, it’s a free read on Smashwords, so there’s no excuse not to enjoy this gem of a book. I’ll be looking out for Tamara Allen’s other works with heightened interest.