Review: Small Change by Roan Parrish (Small Change #1)


Note: This ARC was provided by the author via A Novel Take PR in exchange for an honest review.

And the thought of Christopher loving someone else? Of never feeling the sunny warmth of his regard, or seeing his beautiful eyes narrow in amusement at something I said. Never hearing him snort when he found me ridiculous, or want to hear the details of something that no one else would care about. The thought of all that care turned away from me and toward someone else...it opened a chasm inside me.

At thirty-four, tattooist and artist Ginger Holtzman pretty much knows where her priorities lie. She knows Small Change, the tattoo studio that's been her home since she was sixteen, will soon be truly hers, but that also means that she needs to continue putting in most of her time working on her clients and keeping the place in the black. She's also working on paintings to be showcased at a gallery in several weeks' time. Whatever extra time she has she gives to the family she's created for herself--her best friend and the Small Change crew. She doesn't do relationships because she doesn't have the time for them. But then she meets Christopher Lucen, and with his easygoing nature, sincere smile, and penchant for hugging, the owner of Melt, the neighborhood sandwich shop, has her curious and increasingly interested. That doesn't mean, however, that Ginger is ready and willing to bring down her walls--the very same walls that Christopher has no qualms to scale in order to get to the intriguing woman who has captured his attention...and his heart, one that may very well irrevocably break in Ginger's hands.

Small Change is my first Roan Parrish read, but it isn't the first one I've had on my e-reader, having bought her Middle of Somewhere series each time the books were on sale on the Dreamspinner Press website. Now after having read this first in her new series by the same name, I'm berating myself for not having gotten around to reading the Middle of Somewhere books--at the very least, In the Middle of Somewhere, which is where Ginger Holtzman was first introduced and where her best friend Daniel Mulligan has his own story, thus making Small Change a spin-off. So, those books have been pushed up several notches on my to-be-read list. But back to this latest release from the author... Had I known Parrish could make me feel and think as much as she did here, I would have read something from her much earlier. Because the woman can seriously write a story worth reading. Ginger Holtzman and Christopher Lucen are both complex main characters with issues of varying degrees of seriousness, but they also happen to be highly likable and have parts of them that I easily recognized within myself.

The story is told from Ginger's uncensored point of view and the woman rarely hesitates to say what's on her mind. What's in her heart, though, is a different matter entirely. You can see how much Christopher adores her via his emails and text messages to his older brother Jude, and how he thinks she's better than sliced bread--pun intended because he's a sandwich-making savant. At first glance, these two didn't look like they were going to click or make sense but hello, they so did! I know that Ginger and her best friend Daniel had this intense connection, but so did Ginger and Christopher, and while the former's went without saying, the latter's was nonexistent in the beginning and how I loved watching them evolve as a couple. There were tiptoes forward and lunges back on Ginger's end but seeing her develop as a female main character was fascinating. The author deserves kudos on touching upon more serious topics, i.e. misogyny, female empowerment, depression, with the last making me curious as to Jude's story, and I'm anxious for it. Small Change gets five-plus stars and one hell of a Care Bear stare. ♥

Date Read: 03 June 2017

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