(ARC Review) I'll Stand By You by Sharon Sala

I'll Stand By You
by Sharon Sala
Series: None
Release date: June 2015
Publisher: Sourcebooks Casablanca
My rating★★ 
Genres: N/A
Age category: N/A
No. of pages:  N/A
Source: NetGalley
ISBN: 9781402298592
No one is alone
Dori Grant is no stranger to hardship. As a young single mother in the gossip-fueled town of Blessings, Georgia, she’s weathered the storm of small-town disapproval most of her life. But when Dori loses everything within the span of an evening, she realizes she has no choice but to turn to her neighbors.

As long as there is love to give
Everyone says the Pine boys are no good, but Johnny Pine has been proving the gossips wrong ever since his mother died and he took over raising his brothers. His heart goes out to the young mother and child abandoned by the good people of Blessings. Maybe he can be the one to change all that…

My thoughts and whatnot:

Content warning: This contain spoilers (and rants, maybe). Read at your own risk.

It's such a shame that I shame to give this book such a low rating. It has a potential. There's just a lot of stuff I don't agree with.

When I was reading this, I forgot the synopsis. So I reread it again but as I was getting deeper into the book, I have to reread the synopsis again because it's a bit different in what I was expecting. For one, it has different point of views. I had a hard time keeping up with the changes of point of views.

I'm all for the "realistic" element here but this book is overly dramatic. I mean this book can even be a soap opera with all the "tragedies" the main character has to go through. The (main) characters aren't much help, either. Yes, life had been hard on them but they have it easy, really. Like for instance, Dori loses everything but she "didn't know" that her grandfather left a huge inheritance to her. I mean, come on! Convenient plot is convenient. A problem? Now, we can't have that, quick, throw an easy and big solution to that!

Dori and Johnny's relationship didn't really grew well. Five days (?) and they exchanged "I love you"s and you expect me to believe that they mean that? Well, that escalated quickly.

Also here are the things that I find odd:
1. How "shit was going to hit the fan" have to be used multiple times in the first quarter of the book.
2. It's a miracle Dori and Johnny is still alive with all the "heart skipped a beat" stuff.
3. The donations included a makeup bag (which include lipstick, etc.). Couldn't they give a more practical donations? If it was me in Dori's shoes, I would find it hard even to slap a powder in my face let alone apply a freaking lipstick, but that's just me.
4. Dori want to look gorgeous in her grandfather's funeral. WTF Dori?!
5. How much does a babysitter cost? I mean, the story definitely implies that the Pines have a very tight budget.
6. P. Nutt thanked Dori for seeing him in such a short notice when it should be the other way around.
7. Dori beat the shit out of Frankie, in a very public place. If the girl do the beating it's okay, right?
8. Dori's "neighbors" took revenge to another level. Really? Am I suppose to be thankful, in Dori's behalf, or should I call the police who probably will join them?
9. The one-day arrangement of a huge wedding by the kindhearted neighbors. Aside from "Elvis wedding" is this possible?

This would be an okay book for me if the relationship, romantically speaking, between Dori and Johnny was suitably developed (and Dori's neighbors stay out of it).

About the author:
Sharon Sala, who has also written under the name Dinah McCall, has 85-plus books in print, published in four different genres-Romance, Young Adult, Western, and Women's Fiction, and her Young Adult books have been optioned for film. She has been named a RITA finalist seven times by Romance Writers of America, and in 2011 they named her the recipient of the Nora Roberts Lifetime Achievement Award. Her books are New York Times, USA Today, Publishers Weekly bestsellers and published in many different languages. She lives in Oklahoma, the state where she was born.