This is the second in Georgia Beers' Puppy Love series. The first can be found here and the second will follow next Friday.
In the sequel to Rescued Heart, we have Catherine, the bookkeeper at Junebug Farms, and Emily, the daughter of the major donor and sister of the sexual harasser. Due to complaints about her brother's behavior, Emily replaces her brother as liaison for the charities their family's foundation supports. When Emily and Catherine meet, they are both attracted to each other, but Catherine lays down the rule that nothing can happen because it could threaten the shelter. However, Emily can't resist her.
Full disclosure, I did not finish Run to You. It was okay and I was managing, but then all that warmth and charm I felt for Rescued Heart began to evaporate. The biggest issue the book has is consent. Emily spends a lot of time forcing her attentions on Catherine after the latter asks her to stop. It seems innocent because Emily is mainly sending flowers, but there is a power dynamic that bothered me. Emily is in a position to cut off funding to the shelter and cause Catherine to lose her job, the latter point is something that only Catherine acknowledges.
Then, there's an economic divide that Emily refuses to see as real. Catherine grew up with her mother working two jobs to keep food on the table, so Catherine is very aware of what everything is worth. After she gets the first flowers from Emily, she says that she actually thinks cut flowers are a waste of money. So, what happens? Emily sends more flowers because everyone likes flowers. This repeats. And then, Emily shows up at the restaurant where Catherine works part-time as a waitress. She sits at the bar the whole night, which I'm meant to find romantic, but when they leave together, she has purchased the most expensive bottle of wine in the restaurant to take with them, and I wished Emily would evaporate.
All of Emily's behavior might as well belong to her sexual harasser brother. She sees what she wants and goes after Catherine almost as if Catherine has no choice. One could say that it's just flowers or a bottle of wine, but Emily willfully ignores the things Catherine tells her and asks of her. And I stopped after they decided to go to Emily's family's cabin for the weekend. The book tells you that Emily is vibrant and charming, but I hated Emily and wished someone better for Catherine would come along in the second half of the book.
Would I have been kinder to this book in 2016? Maybe to probably, but in 2018, I don't have time for characters who ignore the wishes of others.
content warnings: sexual harassment