REVIEW: About That Night (Matzah Ball Surprise Book 2) by Laura Brown
Izzy Fineberg can take on any challenge—and she’s had some big ones lately. After one fateful night with the hottest Deaf man she’d ever met, Izzy found she was pregnant with his child. And she never caught his name. She’s been doing the single mom thing for nine months now, and surely, nothing could be more challenging than that. But her first day at her new job, she meets her supervisor…and recognizes him immediately.
Nolan Holtzman never expected to see Izzy again, and now, she’s the new hire at the agency he works in. He’d think things were finally going his way for once, if not for the ironclad ban on interoffice dating. He’ll have to keep his distance from her if he wants to keep his dream job helping the Deaf community. Much easier said than done when Izzy drops the bomb that she’s a single parent…of his son.
It’s the shock of his life, but that won’t stop him from stepping up to be a dad. So when Izzy is suddenly in need of a place to stay for a week, Nolan invites her and the baby to his home. But even as difficult as it is, keeping their little family a secret from their employer isn’t their biggest challenge ahead…
Dear Ms. Brown,
I enjoyed “meeting” Izzy Fineberg in last year’s first book in this series, “Matzah Ball Surprise.” Younger sister Izzy pushes her sister in her relationship with (now fiance) Levi and I knew she’d be a firecracker heroine. Now she gets her chance but she’s a much changed woman from the carefree college student she was.
I don’t recall Nolan being in the first book but he seems to be a nice guy. He was hired to work at a non-profit organization working at improving access and information for the deaf community. When his new assistant shows up for her first day of work, they’re both shocked. It made sense that Izzy couldn’t figure out how to track him down after their night together as she was just learning ASL and didn’t catch his signed name before or after the hot sex. Numbers weren’t exchanged and Nolan was leaving for an out of town new job. Now the result of that night will need to be explained.
To their credit, Izzy immediately tells Nolan about the fact that he’s a father and Nolan accepts his new normal. I could understand that he’s shocked at this sudden life change and needs time to get used to it. Of course some issues stand in the way of their HEA. Nolan’s own father wanted nothing to do with fatherhood and was never a factor in Nolan’s life so he feels he has nothing to lean on or a role model to draw on in being a parent. Nolan is determined not to shirk his responsibility but in his (slight) shock, he initially comes off as offering money over emotional support. Their office’s “no dating” policy has always applied to current relationships but Izzy and Nolan feel that theirs is past and won’t affect their work. Of course romance readers will be waiting for this to blow up in their faces.
Also to Nolan’s credit, when Izzy needs a temporary place for her and son Archie to stay while Levi’s place gets renovated (Gaby and Levi have been housing Izzy until she can afford her own place) he steps up and offers his spare bedroom. Predicted closeness leads exactly where we think it will. Nolan also steps up and helps take care of Archie at their workplace as (usual daycare giver) Gaby is out of town with Levi.
I enjoyed the scenes of Nolan learning about childcare and realizing just why Izzy always looks exhausted. He admits his admiration for how well she’s managed to look after their son all by herself and regrets that she’s had to do so. He’s determined to shoulder his share of the work even if his first experiences watching and later changing a loaded diaper almost make him dry heave. It’s emotional for him when he realizes that Izzy has been signing to Archie along with talking to him. The book also covers some of the challenges deaf parents must deal with in child raising.
Izzy isn’t sure exactly what Nolan sees as their future but she’s more than willing to let him take over some of the feeding and diaper duties. Kudos that their workplace is supportive of providing her with a private place to pump milk and later to allow her to bring Archie in to work for a week. But yeah there’s that pesky “no dating” thing that is just waiting to burst their bubble.
Everything was going well until the inevitable Something Happens and then wow, Izzy and Nolan truly disappointed me with their knee jerk over reactions. I mean no talking over what happened just ::hand slash:: and it’s over forever and ever amen. Yes, they do make things up and talk and both do some thinking and self reflection but I felt that without some serious outside forces, these two might have just called it quits for good.
The writing for this book felt smoother than the previous one but it could easily have left out a lot of repetition surrounding the risk that Izzy and Nolan faced with losing their jobs should their past relationship be discovered. They did grow as characters and in their relationship though that was a bit fast given the enormous changes to their lives, especially Nolan’s as he was suddenly dropped into instant fatherhood. I would also love to have seen more of his mother as she seems like one sharp yet loving lady. So yay on more #ownvoices deaf representation but I still had some issues overall with the story. B-