This review is for the book "Mars... With Venus Rising" by Hope Toler Dougherty. This is a book about Penn Davenport, a young lady in her mid-20's who lets fear rule her life. She has lived in fear after her parents died in a plane crash, leaving her an orphan in the care of her two aunts. She meets a young man named John who is a pretty typical young guy, but he throws Penn for a loop. She can't believe he wears black, drives a motorcycle, and wants to fix up a house without having a background in carpentry.
Honestly, Penn irritates me. I can't say that I empathize with her, because I have never had a loss like her fictional loss. But she quivers with fear about every little thing, and her incredibly low self-esteem made me pity her and want to walk away from her, rather than befriend her character. Fortunately, John is a better man than I, because he sees something in Penn and sticks around.
The aunts are the best part of the book, in my opinion. They are quirky and fun-spirited and AWESOME cooks. The story ends up with a happy ending, with Penn breaking out of her shell a bit, so that's good at least.
Thank you to Litfuse Publicity for a copy of the book in exchange for my honest review.