Karen has a wonderfully happy life. In the winter, she is a ski instructor in Wyoming and in the summer she works at the bookstore she co-owns on Long Island, New York. She is content to live in a small trailer in the summer and in a tiny attic room in the winter. These small spaces make her feel safe and secure. Karen loves the outdoors, her face glowing at the sight of a sunset and her heart content with the breath-taking view from the mountains. Then along comes John and Karen's world is shaken. There is a definite mutual attraction between the two that scares her. How can her life stay the same if she lets this man into her world? How could she possibly maintain her carefree lifestyle with a man whose world is so different than hers? But soon, Karen realizes "how empty a place can be when just one person is missing".
Although this was a very short read, it was a good one. It is a story told entirely through a set of emails written between Karen and her best friend Leslie. These emails not only reveal the story, but they are the means by which Karen muddles through her emotions and tries to make sense of her feelings for John. At first, I thought this style would distract me, but I quickly got used to the format and began to sink into the storyline. Some of the emails written by Leslie were quite short, leaving me wanting to know more about her character and her relationship with Karen. I also wanted more of John and Karen together. Karen's feelings for John are revealed in her correspondences but I wanted to hear more from John himself, and simply not what Karen relayed through her emails. The author does a great job of relaying some vivid descriptions of the landscape, making me feel that I was right there on the mountaintop, feeling the wind in my face or the sunshine on my skin. I wanted Karen to take a chance on love, and was happy to see her taking some risks midway through the book. But at times, I was frustrated with her when she retreated back into that space within her self. Yet, I was touched when she revealed her mistakes to Ben, the young boy who visited her often at the bookstore. I think what touched me even more was his innocent, yet so enlightening reply:
He wrinkled his freckled and spotted nose like some benighted guru and said, "You know how I know? You look like Granny when my granddad died.""A Little Bit of Passion" is about characters who are passionate about life and who learn how to make room in their lives for the oldest of all passions....that which we call love.
"It's because I was stupid," I explained. "I love somebody very much, but I didn't believe in it, and that's why I destroyed it. And it's all my own fault."
He nodded. "Like when I washed my crocodile, and all the stuffing came out, and Mom said I shouldn't have done it, only I thought it would be all right because a crocodile lives in the water, doesn't it?" That was when I smiled. "Yeah. Just like that," I said. "I washed the stuffing out of John."
I was asked by the author to review this book. I was not compensated for my opinions.