If It Ain't Love

Rated 5.00/5 based on 6 reviews
In the darkest days of the Great Depression, New York Times reporter Whit Stoddard has lost the heart to do his job and lives a lonely hand-to-mouth existence with little hope of recovery, until he meets Peter, a man in even greater need of new hope.
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Reviews of If It Ain't Love by Tamara Allen

Queen Bee reviewed on July 5, 2020

Beautiful! Just...beautiful! All of it - the writing, the characters, the ambiance or tone of the book!

While the story is perfectly realized as is, I find myself greedy for more!
(review of free book)
Cathy Brockman reviewed on Oct. 1, 2013

Review Written for http://mmgoodbookreviews.wordpress.com/
This story won my heart. I love the cover also. It’s so well written for such a short story.
Whit Stoddard is a reporter in the time of the Great Depression. He is barely doing enough stories to get by. He meets Peter a man that is just fallen to the Great Depression. Peter changes Whit’s life in so many ways and shows him there is still humanity in the world and maybe even a chance for a man to find love.
This is a very beautiful story. I find I love this era. The way the author describes things so simply but elegantly; I felt as if I were there in the bread lines or there in the hotel with all the homeless. It is also one of those stories with some deeper meaning. You really should read it. It’s free so what do you have to lose?
I highly recommend this if you like depression era stories, reporters, love, hope for life and an all-around good story
(review of free book)
Victoria Zagar reviewed on July 8, 2013

The Great Depression looms over New York, with the jobless and the hungry devoid of hope that things will ever get better. Walt is a journalist who can’t write a story. Penniless, he spends the night at a flophouse where he meets Peter, a formerly wealthy man who is about to lose everything he has. Walt brings hope back into Peter’s life by giving him the chance to change the lives of others and in doing so finds the inspiration for a story that will kickstart his career.

I thought I would have a quick read before bed, so I opened this e-book with the expectation of reading a few pages and literally couldn’t put it down until I was finished. It’s been a while since I sat down and read a story that was a pure five star read for me, but If It Ain’t Love hit the spot perfectly. It’s a tale of darkness and light, despair and hope in a time when there was a lot of the former and not much of the latter.

Allen nails the Great Depression and its feelings of hopelessness, and yet somehow manages to make this a warm and hopeful story despite all the suffering. Walt and Peter are both good people getting through hard times, but they haven’t let it corrupt them. I felt so much warmth in this story that I found myself smiling. It’s been a while since I really felt touched to my core by a story and moved by its romance.

The writing style is excellent, giving enough details about the time and place without swamping the reader, while moving things along at a decent pace without rushing. It’s a fairly short read that you can complete in one sitting, but sometimes I prefer that to stories that meander on for two hundred pages to pad out a word count. If It Ain’t Love is short and sweet, warm and hopeful and a great read. Even better, it’s a free read, so there’s no excuse not to enjoy this gem of a book. I’ll be looking out for Tamara Allen’s other works with heightened interest.
(review of free book)
Renee Patrick reviewed on March 11, 2013

This was a beautiful story, I don't know how to put into words how beautiful. Definitely worth the read.
(review of free book)
Ann Somerville reviewed on Oct. 11, 2011

I won’t claim to be Tamara Allen’s biggest fan only because I know that there is fierce competition for that position. But by god, I love her writing, so very very much. Yet, when this little freebie turned up, I hestitated over reading it. I was in a foul mood about other things, and a story set in the Depression sounded…well, depressing. You can understand my reasoning, I’m sure.

But I should have had faith. This is the author who can make Victorian England sound almost wonderful, who could write about post WWI America (indeed, on the verge of the Great Depression) and make it a funny, fantastic, romantic place, and who could make the dry and dusty world of banking a hot bed of intrigue and sexual tension.

Once again she works her magic, and while the grim realities of the depths of the Depression are not remotely skirted over (and of course, knowing there are people in America, land of such wealth and promise, who still live hand to mouth as they did in the 1930′s, is sobering), she uses the very misery of people flung out of work and their homes to tell a sweet, beautiful story of love, hope, and above all—kindness. Whit and Peter are adorable – there’s jus no other word for it. They care about each other, and hold each other, raising each other out of their gloom and situations. A friend described this to me as having a Christmas feel about it, and it does. It’s a story about small acts of humanity making small but significant differences to little people’s lives, even while the whole world is mired in endless financial and social failure. It’s ultimately a story about how the human spirit is an amazing , almost indomitable force for both good and ill. Ms Allen believes in the good in people, and she’ll make you believe in it too.

Read it, love it, then read her other books. You’ll never regret it, and feel a better person for the effort.
(review of free book)
Alex Whitehall reviewed on Oct. 6, 2011

This is a beautifully written piece that follows the struggles of two men during the Great Depression and the hope that can be found in the most desperate of times. I don't have a single thing to mark off against this story. It was moving and well written, and I loved the characters, but it didn't make me feel like I was shorted (as many short stories do). It ended when it needed to. It painted the time period, surroundings, and characters superbly, giving enough to let the reader see without cluttering the pages.
(review of free book)
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