Title: Discovering Arugula
Subtitle: Book Two In Who Got Liz Gardner Series
Author: Elizabeth Allen
Publisher: Outskirts Press, Inc., 2011
Format: Trade Paperback and eBook
Length: 545 pages
Falling in love with Eric was like Discovering Arugula…
Liz Gardner, our sexy, one-of-a-kind bombshell from Who Got Liz Gardner, is back. And only she would ever come up with the idea of comparing the great love of her life to a salad component. But Arugula and Eric are tastes that, once experienced, wipe out whatever has come before. They’re sophisticated, seductive and orgasmic! They’re exotic, spicy, raw and organic. These two, Eric and Arugula, are genuine and original—their way or state of being is unlike anything Liz has ever experienced. And there’s no going back.
As in her first book, Elizabeth Allen’s character tells it like it is (or was). Liz Gardner knows that in order to find her true love it’s essential to move away from her somewhat self-destructive and definitely narcissistic ways. And when she finds this man, Liz’s decision is confirmed; the love of her life won’t stand for her old ways. He expects a mature woman, someone he can trust and who will trust him. He wants an adult life partner. And therein lies Liz Gardner’s problem. She’s a basket full of insecurities and wants. While sex is still natural and oh so good, it’s confined to one man. So, we get to see the inner battles she fights when old flames show up—looking good and ready for all the action she can handle. We go crazy as we’re dragged through her own period of uncontrollable jealousy. We live through her encounters with the mother-in-law from hell. Yet there it is again: Liz always falls just so far before hitting the solid interior wall I’ve named “I won’t run away from life.”
A reader might ask himself or herself why do I want to read about the courtship, marriage and birthing of the first child of a loving couple who offer us no “real” problems, that Discovering Arugula is, in fact, nothing more than the coming-to-age story of a Drama Queen? And it would be a fair question to ask.
Here’s the most succinct answer I can give you… Even when Liz is behaving without regard to what unfiltered thought has come to the forefront of her mind, or saying what she thinks without any editing whatsoever, or she’s showing us, frame by frame, how she deals with the wild thoughts which regularly run through her head, to quote myself “she’s charming, larger than life and great fun to read about.” So much so, that many fans of Elizabeth Allen’s first book, Who Got Liz Gardner, were absolutely convinced it wasn’t fiction but, actually, an intimate biography of such detail that you would be hard pressed to find this kind of reading anywhere else, fans who intruded so far into the author’s personal life that she was forced to change the name of one of the leading characters in both books.
When a book can do that, when it can be taken for the truth even though it has been billed as fiction, the author must have shown us such things that we’ve not just suspended our disbelief, we have become actual believers. Give me such an author, and I’ll give her my hard earned money. Give me such an author, and I’ll gladly give her the time it takes for me to read her book. Give me such an author, and I will study—for there is surely something here to be learned. A sequel? Discovering Arugula is already sitting on my shelf beside Who Got Liz Gardner. Go get a copy of your own.
Copyright © Clayton Clifford Bye 2011
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