The storm of the century is about to hit Little Bridge Island, Florida—and it’s sending waves crashing through Sabrina “Bree” Beckham’s love life… (from the book blurb)
No Judgments is the first title in a new series set on Little Bridge Island, just off the coast of Florida. The protagonist, twenty-five-year old Bree Beckham is a waitress in the Mermaid Cafe and a daughter of a radio super star Judge Justine. Only Bree doesn’t want anybody to know about her mother or the fact that she dropped out of a law school. She wants to paint landscapes (or rather cloudscapes), earn her living by working earnestly and serving breakfasts to locals and tourists, look after her cat Gary, and generally think things through. Bree broke up with her jet-setting boyfriend Caleb, after he didn’t believe her telling him about his best friend trying to rape Bree. For that matter, even her mother, Justine, tried to downplay what happened. No wonder Bree ( or Sabrina as she used to be called in her New York life) needs time in a safe place trying to figure out what she wants from life.
Unfortunately, this quiet time is about to be interrupted by a category 5 hurricane Marylin heading in their direction. Most people are evacuating, but Gary, Bree’s cat, whom she rescued from an animal shelter, has just had a dental surgery (living on the streets for years has not been kind to him) and is in no condition to travel, so Bree is staying put, despite whatever her boss’s nephew Drew Hartwell might be saying. Bree has been warned to stay away from Drew, the local heartthrob, whose truck used to be parked in front of a diffrent woman’s house every week, and sometimes every night.
I thought the book was going to follow the passing of the storm, but it happens in the middle, and the rest is devoted to Bree saving pets left behind by evacuees who thought they could get back home the following day and did not count on the island being cut off in the aftermath of the hurricane. Bree and Drew share a passion for animal welfare, so this book is definitely going to be appreciated by animal lovers. It is difficult not to judge people who panic or trust another person to take care of their pet only to realise the animal is stranded with no food or water. Bree’s No Judgments appeal allows her to get addresses and reach the animals in need. Applying the same policy to people in her life is not easy, but is the first step to forgiveness and a promising new relationship. At the end of the book she seems to sort her issues with her mother/ mothers ( the mother who gave birth and raised her and the egg donor from whom Bree inherited her artistic side). She even confronts Kyle, her assaulter, although I did not like and do not condone the gun usage in the scene.
I loved the setting – Meg cabot’s descriptions of Little Bridge are delightful and will make you fall in love with this tiny island inhabited by warm-hearted and hospitable people. And Gary and Bobby Socks are a wonderful addition to the character cast.
Overall, an interesting book for fans of a small town setting and animal lovers. Will be looking forward to the next title in the series (right now I cannot guess who the next protagonist might be).
Thank you to Edelweiss and William Morrow paperbacks for the ARC provided in exchange for an honest opinion.
- Have you read No judgments or is it on your tbr list?
- Do you like Meg Cabot’s work? if yes, what is your favourite book/series?
- Are you a fan of a small town setting?
- What do you think of Bree’s No Judgments Appeal to pet owners who left their animals behind?