This is the second book in the Shy Town series and it focuses on Ivy. Ivy is a twenty-something girl-about-town, who is a rising star in the advertising industry. She lives with her best friend Ella, and another girl, Bobbie. A fourth girl, Meryl, rounds out their gang. Their world is based in Chicago and filled with work drama, fashion dilemmas and romantic entanglements. Ivy seems to find trouble wherever she turns. Despite knowing she shouldn’t mix work with pleasure, Ivy starts dating one of her clients. Matters get more complicated when she develops feelings for her best friend’s brother, Shane. Add some daddy issues to the mix, and the angst of being a quarter century old, and you’ve got yourself a story.
The beginning of the book was a struggle for me, which may be because I’m not a twenty something anymore. The Shy-Town girls’ day-to-day lives, work aside, seemed trivial to me. I initially found Ivy to be self-indulgent and arrogant (and proud of it). I was turned off by all the drinking and talking about random hook-ups (although I eventually learned this didn’t mean sleeping together). Obviously, my age was getting in the way of my connection with the characters. When the story focused on Ivy’s career I was more interested. When the author dropped a literary bombshell with letter from Ivy’s long-lost father I became seriously invested. As the story progressed, I was thrilled to see Ivy growing up. The character development was authentic and believable. I came full circle, caring for Ivy and appreciating her relationship with her friends. I even became a little nostalgic about my own twenties.
I also really enjoyed the romantic storyline that takes place in the book, although it’s really not the focus of the story. Ivy’s story is about work, friendship, family, love and growing into an adult. The writing is very good, especially the dialogue. The plot is fun and there’s a great teaser at the end of the book that definitely has me intrigued to read book three.