Monday, June 3, 2013

A Change of Plans Review & Giveaway

Book Review May 18

A Change of Plans

by: Donna K. Weaver

★★★★ 4 Stars

Blurb: When twenty-five-year-old Lyn sets off on her cruise vacation, all she wants is to forget that her dead fiancé was a cheating scumbag. What she plans is a diversion uncomplicated by romance. What she gets is Braedon, an intriguing young surgeon. He's everything her fiancé wasn't, and against the backdrop of the ship's make-believe world, her emotions come alive.
Unaware of the sensitive waters he navigates, Braedon moves to take their relationship beyond friendship—on the very anniversary Lyn came on the cruise to forget. Lyn's painful memories are too powerful, and she runs off in a panic.
But it's hard to get away from someone when you're stuck on the same ship. Things are bad enough when the pair finds themselves on one of the cruise's snorkeling excursions. Then paradise turns to piracy when their party is kidnapped, and Lyn's fear of a fairy tale turns grim.

*ARC received from author in exchange for an honest review*

For most of the book I was engaged and interested and really enjoying everything. However, after awhile the time each time jump left me feeling off kilter and separated from the story. I still loved it I guess I just wish there was more... I understand with everything that happens it’s inevitable to showcase a long time in any other way but for me, the transition was not as smooth as I would have liked. I think honestly, I would have liked more detail and more time before and after each time jump. Even the romance did not seem so detailed. The romance between Elle and Braedon was more secondary to the story and everything that was happening. It’s you’re your worst fears on everything you don’t want to go wrong on a cruise that inevitably happens. Everyone thinks being shipwrecked on a island is romantic but A Change of Plans shows how that is not the case and everyday is a battle to survive. This vacation is anything but fun in the sun.
This seemed more a tale of survival with romance thrown in. The love-story is not the main point here nor should it be. In ways it’s refreshing to take a step back from all the glitz and glam of new love. These two Elle and Braedon are thrust together in dire circumstances and they must learn to work together and to just get along to make it through another day. Luckily the attraction is there from the start so it’s not a case of last man and woman on earth syndrome.  Adding in the fact that he is a surgeon and a very adept MacGyver Elle doesn’t make out too badly.  
When Elle and her friend embark on the cruise it has been a year since the devastating betrayal/death of an ex and she is trying to move on.  The first time they meet the sparks fly and Elle tries her hardest to avoid his advances, her past sheltering her from further pain. Then they’re thrown on an island together and have no choice but to work together and eventually Braedon helps erase Elle’s pain. He had his really adorable and sweet moments like when he carves a wooden ring with a pearl in it for a ‘wedding band.’
Guess it’s good to be prepared for anything because in many ways their combined skills keep them alive. Elle finds a way to make soap, repair their clothing, and make sanitary products out of some sort of root. I thought that was a genius addition to the story because that is something that every female stranded on an island would encounter and without smart thinking they’d have to spend a week in the ocean.
Considering how long they are on the island, that portion of the story is not really long. We get snippets of things that happened in between the skips like her breaking her collar bone and them creating numerous vessels to try to escape but we don’t get to see it and that’s a shame.
When Elle is rescued thing went a little downhill for me mostly because I wondered how things could possibly keep getting worse. First she is separated from Braedon then she is returned to a world she is no longer familiar with. Her friend has moved on and gotten married and her parents, the only family she has is gone as well as her home. Absolutely heartbreaking.  
At times this book is like bad thing after another. People die, brutally no less, they get taken by pirates, stranded on an island and lost at sea. Some people have it bad but these two just have no luck. But Elle doesn’t make it seem that way. Being on the island changes her or maybe it’s Braedon. She becomes more alive and determined. She has no shame in going to visit Braedon’s father knowing that man thinks little of her and views their marriage as a sham. She doesn’t hide like she would have but instead becomes a fixture in his life, the two quickly bonding over their shared love for Braedon.
The end was beautiful and romantic but felt a bit rushed. I would have like to see more of Braedon and Elle after they are reunited. At the very least an epilogue but by this point in the story we all can see the HEA happening before our eyes so it’s not truly necessary.
This book makes me want to pick up a survival guide, just in case. Aside from the choppiness of the time jumps I really enjoyed A Change of Plans, the cruise definitely changed a lot of plans for both Elle and Braedon but in the end I’d say everything worked out. This was a contemporary romance so if that’s your thing, A Change of Plans is for you…

Title: A Change of Plans
Author: Donna K. Weaver
Release Date: June 1, 2013
Pages: 327
Genre: Young Adult Contemporary

About Donna K. Weaver:
Donna K. Weaver is a Navy brat who joined the Army and has lived in Asia and Europe.

Because she sailed the Pacific three times as a child, she loves cruising and wishes she could accrue enough vacation time to do more of it with her husband.

Donna and her husband have six children and eight grandchildren who live all over the world.
At fifty, Donna decided to study karate and earned her black belt in Shorei Kempo.

After recording city council minutes for twenty years, Donna decided to write something a little longer and with a lot more emotion--and kissing.

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A Change of Plans Book Trailer via YouTube:



  1. Simply. Amazing.

    I absolutely love this review. Awesome.

    Thanks so much for posting!


  2. Thank you so much for taking the time to read the book. There actually was an epilogue, but when I decided to tell Jori's love story, I took it out since it gave away too much.

    And there's a deleted scene that shows how Lyn broke her collar bone. ;)

    1. Thank you for writing it lol... It was an adventure to read and now there's deleted scenes!!! Sooo happy!! :P


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