Romantic Journey by Stephanie Howard (Harlequin Romance)

Romantic Journey

(No Series)
Harlequin Romance

She not only wanted to write the story, she desperately needed to write it. How dare Vittorio (*Erin editor note: yes, Vittorio) try to interfere! Did he think his wealth and success gave him the right to ridicule her work and the magazine she wrote for?

"What a pity you won't be around to see the fireworks," he said. "They'd be something else you could write about in that pathetic little rag of yours."

Well, she'd show him. Kate certainly didn't intend to let some pigheaded superior macho male tell her what she could and could not do! Not even if he was the same man who sent her pules racing...

Yes, another old book, don't sue me. Not the best for a review site to keep rehashing older books that aren't well-known, but I know the readers here will likely understand the pull of the older Harlequin books. Easy to read in one afternoon and strangely addictive, these stories are the type they spew out by the dozens but each holds a strangely mesmerizing quality.

In Romantic Journey, the protagonist is a struggling journalist eager to help her family back home, not entirely devoted to her job but determined to succeed so that she can find peace in her personal life. To do so, she must fight the domineering and stubborn Vittorio (yes, Vittorio), losing her heart along the way (naturally).

I wasn't excited about this book at first, truthfully, for during the first chapter the author showed tendency to over-dramatize and use the word "very" excessively. Howard took too much care in pointless description, overdoing the reaction angle the characters should have, making things seem too "bookey." After the author found her footing, the book fortunately took a better-written direction.

While I wasn't impressed with their initial meeting of minds, both Vittorio (yes, Vittorio) and Kate grew on me. I found her uncomfortable meeting in his hotel room delightfully embarrassing; it would have been impossible to have turned away if I wanted to. Her plan to accompany him on the trip was wicked fun, as was his reaction when he found her out. There were fun times with this one, many of them hilarious. Romantic moments weren't outstanding much of the time, although there were some typically sweet moments.

Another winner for Harlequin, this one not suffering from the sickly sweet syndrome, or where it's so light and fluffy airheads only need to apply. Instead it's sweet, it's cute, it's fun and funny, it's romantic and sensual without the spice, and leaves that warm, cuddly feeling in the pit of the stomach (although sadly not that warm feeling any other places).