Jennifer Greene is a much beloved writer of the contemporary romance, having published more than sixty of them. She brings the same wit and warmth to Where Is He Now? and continues to please and entertain her loyal readers.
Jeanne Claire Cassidyís life looks perfectly wonderful on the outside, until the day she receives an invitation in the mail to help organize her fifteen-year high school reunion. At thirty-three, she is a successful event planner for Oz Enterprises, having returned home after the end of her four-year marriage to work for her father, John. She never intended to work for her father but he needs her. Jeanneís mother, Claire, started Oz Enterprises, but after her death at the hands of a drunk driver, John has been unable to keep the business afloat. He has no head for business and a knack for getting it into further financial trouble, and Jeanne feels responsible to keep the business running for him, even though he sabotages her at every turn.
Fifteen years ago, Jeanne had been voted Most Popular, Most Beautiful, and prom queen of St. Sebastianís high school. Everybody had liked her and been drawn to her quiet beauty, but she had only ever loved one boy: Nate Donneli. Nate had attended school on a scholarship as he came from a blue-collar family who could not afford the tuition otherwise. He had been cocky and sexy with his thick dark hair, slow grin, and liquid brown eyes. Nate had been voted Guy Most Likely To Succeed, class president and a lettered athlete, as well as getting top grades.
Jeanne never quite understood what went wrong. She and Nate had been wildly in love, but he had dumped her in a letter during his first semester at Princeton, where he was attending on a scholarship. That instant changed her life, but she never really understood how much until the letter for the reunion arrived. Jeanne realizes her life has been on a downward spiral since that moment when she lost all confidence in herself. Since being crushed by Nateís rejection, she has allowed other people, such as her father, to determine how she has lived her life. Jeanne is a woman who has lost herself.
Deciding that she needs to face Nate again to find out why he dumped her all those years ago, she contacts him, using the reunion as an excuse. Jeanne knows that she cannot move forward in her life until she finds out the answer to the question that has burned away at her self confidence since then.
Nate Donneliís life has been out of control since his first semester in college. The death of his father forced him to quit school and become the provider for his mother and five younger siblings. Nate had wanted to be an architect and always hated his fatherís garage, but in order to feed his family he has turned it into a successful antique car repair shop, Donneli Motors. Dumping Jeanne was the hardest thing heíd ever done, but he had done it for her own good, knowing he could not ask her to share his burdens.
The reunion brings them together again and gives them a second chance. Both are forced to examine their past relationship and dreams and the lives they have led right up until now. They are not the same fearless kids they were at eighteen, but they have learned from their mistakes. Will they take this second chance, or will old problems and habits sabotage their chance at love?
Where Is He Now? is a novel about dreams past and present and how we are responsible for making our own destiny. It is about choices and facing the truth about our lives good and bad, and knowing that it is alright to let go of old dreams and have new ones. This is a wonderful, warm story about two people and their families. There is also a great secondary love story between Jeanneís best friend Tamara and Arnold, a man who had a crush on her in high school. Their story is also about taking chances.
There is a lack of depth in the relationships Jeanne and Nate have with their respective families. Also, they tend to grow more as individuals rather than sharing and growing together as a couple. Jeanneís real career dreams could have been hinted at throughout the novel and not just mentioned fleetingly at the end, as if it really didnít matter. At times, the secondary romance is more interesting than the main one, but all in all it is an enjoyable read. It makes you stop and think about your own life and where you have been and if you are where you want to be. It makes you realize that change is possible.