Sigh. It is with some reluctance I move Just This Once onto the "Abandoned" shelf. I'm up to the 49% mark, and have not touched the book for many months. I wanted to love it, I really did. Sadly, I just don't care what happens next. I think part of my problem is that the Hero is not just an All Black, but THE All Black (i.e. captain), and I can only imagine my own sense of anger and betrayal if our beloved Captain Fantastic hooked up with some bint from the States settled down with foreigner, particularly one from a non-rugby country. I feel small minded as I type these words, but I fear it is the truth.
JTO has also been thrown into sharp relief for me recently by reading Chocolate Cake for Breakfast. This time our Hero is also an All Black - and The World's Best Lock - but somehow Danielle Hawkins manages to make him far more believable/authentic than The All Black from JTO. In JTO, the kiwi colloquialisms felt as if they were poked into the dialogue for effect, in CCFB the arose naturally from the character development.
CCFB is the second book from Danielle Hawkins that I've read, and I have every intention of reading every other thing she writes in the future. I may give Rosalind James another crack sometime in the future, but don't hold your breath.