I have mixed feelings about The Words Shimmer by Jenn Matthews. I did enjoy reading the book, and there are quite a few elements that I like. However, if you asked me to choose between this novel and Ms. Matthews’ first book, Hooked on You, I would have to pick her debut novel as my favorite.
The Words Shimmer does have some really good qualities. It is a character driven tale which is one of my favorite types of books. The two main characters, Ruby Clark and Melissa (Mel) Jackson are both mature women in their forties which, for me, is refreshing. I loved the fact that the author made these two almost a lesbian Odd Couple. Ruby is very prim and proper, who likes everything to be in its place at all times. She is also a very private person. Mel is almost the complete opposite, being very open and out there with a “take me as I am or leave me alone” type of personality. This is a great conflict element, and I wish the author had used it more in the story. It seemed to become less noticeable as the story progressed, though it did not completely disappear.
I admired that the author included a disability in the plot. Mel has dyslexia, and this is something she wants to hide from Ruby and others, even though she has done well in her life in spite of it. Both main and secondary characters are well-developed, and are easy to connect with. The slow-burn romance is really too slow in this novel. The story actually dragged for me after a while, and I think this was part of the problem. Despite this, I did like this book overall, and will definitely be looking for more from this author.
I received this as an ARC from Ylva Publishing for an honest review.