Thursday, June 27, 2013

Review: In Need of Therapy by Tracie Banister

In Tracie Banister’s sophomore novel, In Need of Therapy, she introduces us to Pilar Alvarez, a South Beach based psychologist that has her own set of issues to handle.  Not only is her Cuban family a little crazy, but she has three muy caliente men in her life.  What is a single lady to do but have a little bit of fun?

If you read Ms. Banister’s debut novel, Blame It On The Fame, then you already know that she has a knack for weaving a tale that will suck you in with characters that are as vividly brought to life on the pages as the hot locations that they are playing in. The character of Pilar is so completely adorable with her quirks that you are going to eagerly keep turning the pages to see what happens next. And you are going to be enamored with three very different men that are all vying for a spot in Pilar’s life (and heart) – Her cheating ex, Victor, that vows he is ready to change for her as he makes one grand gesture after another to try to reclaim his position in her life; Hot lifeguard Mitch, who is unfortunately a patient as well; and fellow psychologist Ford, who has an adorable moppet of a son and a wedding ring firmly in place on his finger.  You add a scandal causing sister, a fun best friend, and an over-bearing mother, who just wants her daughter to get married, and you have quite the story.

This review took me almost two weeks to write.  Not because I couldn’t think of the words to use to praise the book, but because the review was beginning to sound like a squee’ing fan girl.  However, I think all the “squee” in the world is appropriate for In Need Of Therapy and would happily recommend this book to everyone that I know. Two books in and Tracie Banister has proven that she has what it takes to keep readers entertained for many years to come. 

Author Bio:  An avid reader and writer, Tracie Banister has been scribbling stories since she was a child, most of them featuring feisty heroines with complicated love lives like her favorite fictional protagonist Scarlett O'Hara. Her work was first seen on the stage of her elementary school, where her 4th grade class performed an original holiday play that she penned (Like all good divas-in-the-making, she, also, starred in and tried to direct the production.) Her dreams of authorial success were put on the backburner when she reached adulthood and discovered that she needed a "real" job in order to pay her bills. Her career as personal assistant to a local entrepreneur lasted for 12 years. When it ended, Tracie decided to follow her bliss and dedicate herself to writing full-time. Her debut novel, the Hollywood-themed Blame It on the Fame, was released in January, 2012. And she followed that up with the fun summer read, In Need of Therapy.  

Barnes & Noble:

About the book:

Lending a sympathetic ear and dispensing sage words of advice is all part of the job for psychologist Pilar Alvarez, and she’s everything a good therapist should be: warm, compassionate, supportive. She listens, she cares, and she has all the answers, but how’s the woman everyone turns to in their hour of need supposed to cope when her own life starts to fall apart?

While working hard to make a success of her recently-opened practice in trendy South Beach, Pilar must also find time to cater to the demands of her boisterous Cuban family, which includes younger sister Izzy, an unemployed, navel-pierced wild child who can't stay out of trouble, and their mother, a beauty queen turned drama queen who’s equally obsessed with her fading looks and getting Pilar married before it’s “too late.” Although she’d like to oblige her mother and make a permanent love connection, Pilar’s romantic prospects look grim. Her cheating ex, who swears that he’s reformed, is stalking her. A hunky, but strictly off-limits, patient with bad-boy appeal and intimacy issues is making passes. And the sexy shrink in the suite across the hall has a gold band on his left ring finger.

When a series of personal and professional disasters lead Pilar into the arms of one of her unsuitable suitors, she's left shaken, confused, and full of self-doubt. With time running out, she must make sense of her feelings and learn to trust herself again so that she can save her business, her family, and most importantly, her heart.

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