Doctor’s Orders
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Pages: 39
Goes Well With: Hotel room service

In Doctor’s Orders by Annick Claire, we meet Cody Colbrick. One half of the (semi-) famous Colbrick twins, Cody grew up in Door Country, Wisconsin. The Colbrick twins were known throughout the county as rapscallion, handsome cads—real love ‘em and leave ‘em types.

Shortly after high school graduation, Cody begins a steamy summer fling with Brianna Raines—a.k.a. “Brainy Rainy.” Brianna runs off to college at the end of the summer, hardly sparing Cody a second glance. Being such a ladies’ man, Cody barely notices—or does he? The story fast-forwards about ten or fifteen years, and Cody finds himself in the same city as Brianna for the first time since that fateful summer. Cody now runs a successful furniture-making business with his brother, and Brianna is a highly successful doctor and humanitarian.

Brianna never felt “at home” anywhere other than in Cody’s arms. Cody, meanwhile, wasn’t quite the heartless Casanova that everyone made him out to be and was deeply hurt by how Brianna ran away. After seeing each other for the first time in so long, what follows is a study in bitterness, yearning, resentment, and the fine art of carrying a torch for an old flame. Can the two get past the past in order to have a good future together?

As with many short books, I found this e-book to be a bit of a challenge. The format is just too short to develop any sort of reaction to the characters—or at least any sort of positive reaction.

I found Cody to be sort of a jerk, and I was frustrated by the tension between him and Brianna. To paraphrase a cheesy ‘70s TV show, what they have there is a failure to communicate—nothing more. And after two or three bouts of some fairly steamy sex scenes, the couple magically works things out for their own happily ever after. The ending comes completely out of the blue—one minute they’re yelling at each other, the next they’re getting busy, the one after that they’re yelling again, and then a minute after that they’re deciding to get married. Once again, I chalk this up to the constraints of writing such a short book. When you’re working with only 39 pages, you don’t have much space for character development.

All in all, Doctor’s Orders is a fine book. I’ve read better; I’ve read worse. I just wish it had been longer—because I would have liked to see more of Cody as a high school heartbreaker and more of Brianna’s travels with her Doctors without Borders type of group. The story and the characters need fleshing out, and that can only happen with a longer text. But I still found it to be perfectly serviceable.

Ed. Note: For more on Doctor’s Orders, visit

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