November 2015 BOTM ~ Review: Ruby's Choice by D.F. Jones

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bluemel4
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November 2015 BOTM ~ Review: Ruby's Choice by D.F. Jones

Post by bluemel4 » 30 Aug 2015, 18:35

[Following is the official OnlineBookClub.org review of "Ruby's Choice" by D.F.Jones.]
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4 out of 4 stars
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Ruby’s Choice (Ditch Lane Diaries Book 1) by D. F. Jones is the author debut novel and first book in the Ditch Lane Diaries series. The romance novel is set in Tennessee during the 1970s with a small amount of supernatural elements. The main character, Ruby, is drawn into a dating game called “tap it” by two handsome suitors, Brent and Reed. The dating game is won by getting the chosen girl to fall in love with one of them. Ruby figures out that the love triangle is part of a game and tries to turn it around on Brent and Reed. Will Ruby end up losing out on Mr. Right for a chance to win a dating game?

Jones does an excellent job writing an engaging and enchanting novel. The first bloom of love is captured giving an authenticity that makes the novel feel refreshingly honest and real. The characters are fleshed out, realistic, and develop organically throughout. Told in third person limited point of view, Jones showcases a daft hand at switching narrators without causing confusion. There are fun elements that add to the novel’s overall success. For example, each chapter is named with a 1970s song. The time period is honored through references that are iconic to the 1970s, such as Charlie's Angels, Suntan oil, and battery powered transistor radios.

The characters’ feel realistic because the dialogue is genuine. Jones uses great judgment by using accents sparingly. The reader is told that the majority of dialogue is in an accent or southern twang. The characters’ funniest moments came from the creative ways Jones works around curse words.

Both Brent and Reed are smart and sexy, but are very different from each other making them good rivals for Ruby’s affection. Ruby is a likeable character. She is competent, smart, honest, self-aware, and takes responsibility for her feelings and actions. The novel’s plot does not revolve around petty drama or misunderstanding. As a result, there is a true exploration of feelings and a heightened sense of romance.

The novel is part of a series, but does not leave the reader feeling unfulfilled by the ending. Ruby’s Choice stands on its own and gives enough closure to the reader. Threaded throughout are questions and events that can be explored throughout the series.

I rate this book 4 out of 4 stars. Jones’ ability to articulate what it feels like to fall in love and what love is quickened my heart rate and put words to emotions I have only felt before. The characters are strong and well thought out. The dialogue matched seamlessly with how characters felt and acted. If you enjoy romance novels without a lot of self-made drama or are just looking for a good romance this is the book for you.

******
Ruby's Choice
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Post by bookowlie » 31 Aug 2015, 10:40

I like your comment that the writer articulated the emotions of falling in love so well. Romance novels sometimes can fall over the edge into sappy, caricature territory. It sounds like this book doesn't fall into this trap, but is more realistic with great characters. Nice, insightful review. Well done!
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Post by PashaRu » 31 Aug 2015, 10:47

Thanks for nice review! The analysis is specific and insightful. This isn't really the genre that I like to read, but the 70's references sound like fun.
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Post by Levi » 31 Aug 2015, 11:07

@bluemel4 Wow, fantastic review, but we've come to expect nothing less from you. I love the way that you tend to capture everything so well without giving away too much. I find that hard to do especially if I like the book, I basically want to just read the book to the listener so they don't accidentally miss out on a great book because I missed something or didn't represent it right. ;) Congrats to the author on an outstanding review! I mean dang, it made me want to read a romance book just because it sounds so cool, what with the 70's named chapter titles and references, the great characters, and the creative working around profanity. Alright fine, I'll add it to my list, but as a wise kid once said, "Is this a kissing book? Do we HAVE to hear the kissing parts?" Because if so, I'd rather go against a Sicilian--even if death is on the line! :)
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Post by gali » 31 Aug 2015, 11:07

Nice review! I am glad you enjoyed the book. :)

Indeed the author does an excellent job by "writing an engaging and enchanting novel" and that the characters do feel realistic!
In the case of good books, the point is not to see how many of them you can get through, but rather how many can get through to you." (Mortimer J. Adler)

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Post by bluemel4 » 31 Aug 2015, 15:15

bookowlie wrote:I like your comment that the writer articulated the emotions of falling in love so well. Romance novels sometimes can fall over the edge into sappy, caricature territory. It sounds like this book doesn't fall into this trap, but is more realistic with great characters. Nice, insightful review. Well done!
Thank you bookowlie. :D I was so happy the author did not use misunderstandings and self-created drama to move the plot along. It was really well written and touching. I had a smile plastered on my face almost the entire time I was reading the book.

-- Mon Aug 31, 2015 2:17 pm --
PashaRu wrote:Thanks for nice review! The analysis is specific and insightful. This isn't really the genre that I like to read, but the 70's references sound like fun.
Thank you PashaRu! The 70s references were a lot of fun. I remember reading about the suntan oil and thinking my goodness! I haven't used that since I was a teenager. Now I use SPF 50. LOL.

-- Mon Aug 31, 2015 2:19 pm --
Escapeartist wrote:@bluemel4 Wow, fantastic review, but we've come to expect nothing less from you. I love the way that you tend to capture everything so well without giving away too much. I find that hard to do especially if I like the book, I basically want to just read the book to the listener so they don't accidentally miss out on a great book because I missed something or didn't represent it right. ;) Congrats to the author on an outstanding review! I mean dang, it made me want to read a romance book just because it sounds so cool, what with the 70's named chapter titles and references, the great characters, and the creative working around profanity. Alright fine, I'll add it to my list, but as a wise kid once said, "Is this a kissing book? Do we HAVE to hear the kissing parts?" Because if so, I'd rather go against a Sicilian--even if death is on the line! :)
Thank you so much Escapeartist! There are kissing parts in the book, but like Fred Savages character in the Princess Bride I think you can handle it. This book is more about the romance then just steamy sex scenes.

-- Mon Aug 31, 2015 2:19 pm --
gali wrote:Nice review! I am glad you enjoyed the book. :)
Thank you so much gali! It was a great read. :D
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Post by hsimone » 31 Aug 2015, 16:07

@bluemel4

I really enjoyed your review! I personally could go either way for romance novels (meaning I could like them, but I could also not). This one sounds very interesting, and I might give it a shot! I love how the author was able to put actual emotions into words, in a way that made it seem real. That's a unique quality that not many have. Thanks for the great review!
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Post by bluemel4 » 31 Aug 2015, 17:11

Thank you hsimone! The book was a great read. I cannot wait to see where the series goes.
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Post by bookowlie » 31 Aug 2015, 18:00

"Thank you bookowlie. :D I was so happy the author did not use misunderstandings and self-created drama to move the plot along. It was really well written and touching. I had a smile plastered on my face almost the entire time I was reading the book."

Some books are like that. They just make you happy...maybe it's the coffee we drink while reading them. :) With apologies to the Gilmore Girls - let's go to Luke's where the happy coffee is.
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Post by zeldas_lullaby » 31 Aug 2015, 19:26

Great review, Mel! You had me hooked from the beginning with this book's premise! This does seem like a great book, and you brought it to life with your description. It sounds similar to Jane Eyre--one thing I always liked about that book (and it's in my top-three favorite books) is that the romance was based on genuine conversations, getting to know the other, real development, etc. You know, caring and sharing. I may have to read this book.

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Post by bluemel4 » 31 Aug 2015, 19:32

bookowlie wrote:"Thank you bookowlie. :D I was so happy the author did not use misunderstandings and self-created drama to move the plot along. It was really well written and touching. I had a smile plastered on my face almost the entire time I was reading the book."

Some books are like that. They just make you happy...maybe it's the coffee we drink while reading them. :) With apologies to the Gilmore Girls - let's go to Luke's where the happy coffee is.
I am pretty sure the book made me happy with no additional stimuli needed. :lol:

-- Mon Aug 31, 2015 6:34 pm --
zeldas_lullaby wrote:Great review, Mel! You had me hooked from the beginning with this book's premise! This does seem like a great book, and you brought it to life with your description. It sounds similar to Jane Eyre--one thing I always liked about that book (and it's in my top-three favorite books) is that the romance was based on genuine conversations, getting to know the other, real development, etc. You know, caring and sharing. I may have to read this book.
Thank you zeldas_lullaby! I think you will enjoy the book. It is only around 200 pages so it does not have the scope of Jane Eyre, but it is a wonderful romance.
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Post by Tanaya » 01 Sep 2015, 10:07

This was a fantastic review, as everyone else has already said. I like all of the little things that you point out, like the sparing use of accents and switching narrators without confusion. A very convincing recommendation.

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Post by bluemel4 » 01 Sep 2015, 10:23

Thank you Tanaya. D.F. Jones really did a wonderful job writing this book.
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Post by kio » 01 Sep 2015, 20:32

great review. I loved your specific details about the author's writing style in the novel. Can't wait to read this one :)
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Post by bluemel4 » 01 Sep 2015, 20:49

Thank you kio. It is a great book. :D
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