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Sudden Response by R. L. Mathewson

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Sudden Response
EMS #1

R. L. Mathewson
Contemporary Romance
Published in 2011

H/h - Eric Parish/Josephine aka Joe (?)
Setting: Present time.

Read in Feb, 2012.
My rating:

                                                     [spoiler alert]

Hmm, what to write... Let’s see. This book was ok but not very thought provoking for me. Sudden Response is the 1st book of EMS series by R. L. Mathewson. I’ve never read a medical romance before so I thought the EMS part of the book was quite interesting. I didn’t find the information boring; rather thought RLM knows her stuff while I read it. It could’ve been good since it had RLM’s humorous, sometimes silly dialogues/scenes but I didn’t find the main characters that interesting. More often than not, I thought they were being immature or selfish or plain mean to other people. *sigh* I’ll try to explain as I go.

Josephine aka Joe and Eric are best friends since the age of 8. After some really scintillating introduction in the school, these two formed a bond that could make anyone envious. Joe’s mother was ‘not’ the motherly sort, never really cared for her much. We never get to know about her father since he’s never mentioned. When Eric’s father came to have a look at the bully who fed his son worms (don’t ask!), he was never expecting a cute little girl. So wasn’t Nathan, Eric’s elder brother. They just fell in love with her there. Joe soon became a regular part of the family that consisted of their mother Alice, their father and the two brothers. She became kind of unofficially adopted to the family. A few years later, her mother was only happy to ditch her with the Parish family and leave town with her recent boyfriend. From then on, Joe has never heard anything from her in the last 15 yrs. Joe saw Nathan as her elder brother but with Eric, it’s a different story. Since they’re of the same age, Joe and Eric kinda became inseparable but they never saw each-other as siblings. As I read along, I felt that so far they did almost everything except sex. They like to touch each-other; one is always rolling on another, doing things like together as well. For example: they lost their virginity together, on the same day, on the same parking lot... just in two different cars and not to one another that is. They both knew about it of course. (FYI: I didn’t find this funny.) Eric actually knows Joe’s period cycle patterns, which is creepy when I think that they’re nothing but friends. But, I got that they have this unique sort of communication which made me envious from time to time, even though as characters both were annoying for the most part of the story.

So they grew up together, got into EMS together and spend the last 12 yrs being one-another’s partner in the calls. Good. But as I read about their thoughts about life, their relationships with other people and their own, I became more and more irritated. Eric or Joe, none has ever been in a serious relationship, through they’re 30. Eric doesn’t care for women unless it’s sex. I don’t even feel like calling his relationships that, a relationship. It was clear from his thoughts that he had always had the hots for Joe, so did she. Eric, as far as I got it, always compared his dates/gfs to her and they never reached his expectations, unreasonable as those were. Well, I really don’t know why Joe was so special, unless it’s all about her sexy body because personally, I thought Joe was rather annoying. She was always cranky, always going after someone’s butt. So, for Eric it was about sex most of the times and nothing else. He never sought for any serious relationship and treated his exs like crap. So did Joe. She also had the same ‘problem’, if I can call it that. I found it disturbing (and kind of pathetic) that she’d picture Eric while having sex with her partners, even to the one she lost her virginity to. I am not going to be nice because they weren’t nice. Eric got engaged to one of his gfs, not because he loved or cared for the woman, but because he wanted to end his obsession (and attraction) with Joe. Thus, it started with Joe and ended with Joe as a reason, just like all his other relationships. Yah, his gfs got mad when they saw them all touchy-feely with each-other and I couldn’t blame them for it. They even sleep together for crying out loud!! I mean what woman in her right mind would stand a thing like that, some other woman sitting on her bf’s lap and sleeping with him?! But to Eric, there was NO COMPROMISE about this situation so he plain dumped them. And, then there were his thoughts on how he didn’t give a crap about any other woman and how any f*cking other women in this whole wide world never begins to compare with Joe, all the while his comparisons bordering on rather humiliating IMO. Every time all these came up, I wanted to chase him with a broomstick! Jerk!! I don’t think he even remembered his gfs’ names once he’s done with them, as didn’t Joe with her bfs’ since the last bf, to her, was ‘that cop from Nashville’ or something like that. Great! I get it that they have this deep relationship but does this give them the right to be so mean and insensitive to other people? No wonder I didn’t care for them.

I understood that Eric and Joe were rather well trained in their job and did it well, even then some of their activities I found insensitive. There was this one patient who had this... er, really embarrassing accident. Eric and Joe are there to see what happened. Ok, so it was very awkward and I was cringing because the man was in serious pain. Do you know what did they do? They were trying to hide their laughter seeing the man’s ordeal. OMG! I was speechless. Ok, maybe being in a job like that for such a long time, they’ve seen many things and that may have made them lose their sensitive side… I don’t know. I only know that I wanted to beat the hell out of them, that’s all.

We get to learn about Nathan too, who’s getting the next book of the series. Sadly, even though Nathan is nicer than Eric, relationship-wise he’s not far behind. He also dumps women left and right, without any specific reason at all. Eric’s mother is a nice woman; she’s always worried about her sons’ dating disasters, and so she creates her own dating disasters by inviting random single women, who almost always comes off as creepy to the Parish brothers and Joe. Of course, both of them compare women to Joe (yes, even Nathan, for f*cks sake! I still don’t know WHY the f*ck she’s so special! *rolls eyes*) and found all of them either creepy or insubstantial. It got rather old and boring (and disturbing) after sometimes. If Nathan keeps comparing his heroine to Joe in his own book, I don’t know what the hell I’m gonna do. *makes a face here*

So, more into the story- Alice’s matchmaking schemes were going in vain. Nathan dumped another nice, pretty girl for nothing at all. While on another call, Joe and Eric have this close call with some psychotic patient which made Eric instantly fearful of Joe’s well being. So, he was planning to get her out of the job and do something less harmful. He even asks Nathan the big pushover, to help him on this but afraid of what Joe would do to them when she learns of them meddling. As I said, she’s always in a cranky mood and didn’t take anything she considers ‘meddling with her life’ lightly. I don’t know if it was a bad case of PMS or something. Don’t look at me, even Eric made fun of it whenever she was in a cranky mood! Anyhooo, they kiss once or twice in between, one time almost doing it. Afterwards, they keep avoiding talking about that ‘freaky’ situation and what that meant. Now, Eric keeps thinking of what would’ve happened, so did Joe. Both wants to have sex, badly, with each-other but Joe knows that even though he’s the best friend a girl could ever wish for, Eric is a piece of sh*t when it comes to relationships. Funny thing was that the whole situation had Eric thinking about the same thing, that he won’t ever be good enough or that he’d get bored of Joe after sometimes, as he did with all the other ‘available’ women he’d slept with before. In return, he’d lose this relationship that means most to him. Joe is a big part of his family and the person he is, so there’s no living without her. Joe knew that losing this relationship would mean living without the only family she’d ever known (and Eric), so both are afraid to take it any further.

But this couldn’t go on of course, not when they’re almost always together. So, after a lot of dancing around for about 15 yrs of wanting to screw each-other, one day, in their bunker/room where they rest in between calls (yes, together), they just gave in. Both Joe and Eric were single at this point. Sex was hot, BTW. I can’t deny that. Eric was one sexy piece of a$$, even though in other areas of relationship he was a big NO NO. The next day, Joe was going away to for the dispatcher training. After knowing about Eric’s plan and thinking about her life thoroughly, Joe finally came to the conclusion that she needs some extra training, ‘if’ she can’t do her job anymore. She always felt insecure because of how her mother left her and so, she didn’t want to be a burden to the Parish family. But Eric won’t come along with her. Joe can’t believe it. Eric would go with her EVERYWHERE, only to piss her off, if not anything else. It means a lot to have him around always but after one night of mind-blowing sex, he’s already distancing himself. Joe is hurt and pissed. She tries to bate him with fishing, a sport Eric loves as much as sex... well, that was my assumption. But she couldn’t tempt him even with that. So Joe just leaves. In Eric’s mind, the thing about not being good enough for her is going on. He knows she’s hurt but he can’t help it. They both need to think. From this point on, I sort of begin to enjoy the book because I felt that they were finally becoming serious about life and what their relationship ultimately meant. Nathan, who’s not very successful in his own relationships, comes out with his own confession of comparing the other women with Joe and asks Eric to not let her go. He points out that both of them had been in love with each-other for a long time and it’s time that they realize it. Of course both realized it but were just too scared to take the bigger steps.

Anyway, with a little help from Nathan and a healthy dose of groveling from Eric, soon they mend their fences. Eric is still as possessive about Joe as he was before. There were usual funny RLM style scenes, some of them I enjoyed in the last part of the book. They were now living together and already confessed their feelings for each-other. Joe feels that she needs to back out of this job and finishes her training as a dispatcher. Eric proposes. There was a big accident that they witness which involved a guy who appeared in the book from the first scene. He was throughout the book and worked under them as an EMT. It didn’t work out. Then he got hired in some other company but the whole thing ended in a big disaster. It was a nail-biting scene, and even though I felt sad, he made his bed and paid for it.

The epilogue takes place 4 yrs later. It was… I don’t know, nice. Alice is still bringing creepy women in, this time for Nathan, who’s still single, still dumping women left and right. Eric and Joe have a little girl and another one on the way... 3.75 stars. Even though I criticized the characters, all of those were only my opinion. I would NOT say it was a bad read or anything and am definitely looking forward to Nathan’s story. I need to see if he gets his own Joe or not... er, yah, well, I just need to know what happens to him that’s all. lol


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