As a young girl, Jana Jasper was a dreamer who suffered from a speech impediment. She came from a famous political family and wanted more than anything to follow in the footsteps of her father and grandfather. One night, she found a glowing boy hanging from the tree outside her window. She climbed out to free him, and together they shared adventures for a few magical days. Before the mysterious boy whom she had dubbed "Peter," after Peter Pan, left, he gave her a kiss, and after that, she could talk perfectly. Jana grew up to realize her dreams and become a California State Senator. Over the years, she never forgot "Peter" and subconsciously weighed all her relationships against the spellbound emotions she felt when she was with him. As a consequence, she's earned a bit of a reputation as a playgirl who can't seem to settle down with just one guy. Her family suddenly comes under investigation for campaign finance violations, making Jana swear off all men to avoid inviting any further bad publicity, but when she finally comes face-to-face with the grown up "Peter" again at the grocery store, it brings back all the feelings of the past, making it extremely difficult to keep her promise.
Cavin of Far Star visited Earth years ago with his scientist father who was researching whether the planet would be suitable for acquisition by their people. During that trip, he fell for the pretty girl who lived in the ranch house near where they landed their spacecraft and vowed to one day come back for her. He became a soldier in the Coalition army and quickly rose through the ranks, which gave him access to sensitive data. When he discovered that the Coalition intended to invade Earth, he knew that he must do everything he could to save Jana and her people. Violating orders, he flies his spaceship to Earth with a Coalition assassin hot on his trail. Once he's reunited with Jana, they must evade the assassin, as well as someone who seems to be out to get Jana too, all while trying to convince the political powers who are higher up than Jana that Cavin is telling the truth about being from outer space and that they must have access to a spacecraft no one will even admit exists. Life has suddenly become very complicated for these star-crossed lovers, but if they can get out of this mess alive, Cavin knows beyond a shadow of a doubt that he must make Jana his mate for life.
Your Planet or Mine? is my first read by Susan Grant and the first book in her Otherworldly Men series. It got off to a lovely start with the sweet, childhood friendship/romance between the hero and heroine who meet at a young age when he comes to Earth with his scientist father and she rescues him when he accidentally gets stuck in a tree outside her window. I love how they fell in love as kids during the few magical days they shared and neither ever forgot. In my opinion, this is the most romantic part of the book, and when they finally reconnect, the author relies heavily on this brief moment in their lives to explain the ease of their relationship as adults. I had mixed feelings about this. I love the reunion romance theme, and think that having a prior connection went a long way toward developing their relationship. At the same time though, they only spent a few days together when they were quite young and have been separated for twenty-three years, so in spite of them supposedly falling in love at first sight and never forgetting each other, it would have been nice to have a little more build up to their adult relationship. Having them fall right back into that comfortable place with no internal conflicts perhaps stretched the bounds of credibility a bit, but overall, it was still a fairly entertaining story.
As a child, Jana had a speech impediment. Since she couldn't talk, she spent a lot of time dreaming about the fantastical, which makes her very open-minded when a glowing boy in a bubble suit appears outside her window. I loved her childish exuberance, her ready belief that Cavin was from outer space, and her confidence that she would one day marry him. Then we fast-forward to Jana as a grown woman. She has followed in the footsteps of her famous family's political dynasty and become a California State Senator while still in her twenties. I liked that Jana was an idealistic politician with scruples, and I admired her commitment to her family. She's just the kind of person we all wish politicians would be once elected to public office. Her grandfather believes that she will one day become president too. Somewhere along the line, as she was growing up though, Jana convinced herself that her encounter with the boy she dubbed "Peter" was all in her imagination, but for the life of her, she can't seem to make a relationship last. She's gained a reputation in the tabloids for being something of a playgirl, because she runs through men pretty quickly, always looking for someone who will measure up to "Peter" and never finding him. When Cavin finally comes back into her life, she almost immediately discovers that sense of fulfillment again.
Cavin was a sweet boy, who even in his youth, recognized the wrongness of his people "acquiring" Earth and colonizing it. He felt guilty that he and his father ever came there to study the planet, because it would be his father's scientific findings that would eventually lead to them invading. When he went exploring the planet, he instantly fell for the pretty girl who lived in the dwelling near where their spaceship landed. Over the years, he never forgot her and was pretty much always biding his time, waiting for an opportunity to return to her. Cavin became an accomplished soldier, but when he discovered that his people were finally going to invade Earth, he simply couldn't allow that to happen. Setting out on his own, he went in search of Jana, intending to do whatever was necessary to save her and her planet, but he does so with an assassin on his tail. I love how sweet Cavin is when he reconnects with Jana, as well as all the naughty things he whispers to her and how he can't seem to keep his hands off her. He was also very brave in his fight to save Earth. I do wish however, that there had a been a few more scenes from his POV. There were times when I felt like I didn't know him quite as well as I wanted to, but the author does mention that he's a simple man with simple needs, so perhaps there wasn't much more to know.
Your Planet or Mine? has a number of secondary characters, primarily Jana's family. Her grandfather, a former governor, is a driving force throughout. Also introduced are her brother, Jared, and sister, Evie. Jared is a former air force pilot who now owns his own business. He takes part in the Earth-saving operation from the sidelines, and when the story arc continues in the next book, My Favorite Earthling, he gets paired with Kiera, the queen of Cavin's people. Evie is a chocoholic divorcée who has always been Jana's champion. She becomes the heroine of the third book, How to Loose an Extraterrestrial in 10 Days, paired with someone who is introduced in this book, but I can't mention his name or it would reveal a spoiler.
In addition to the romance, I thought that Your Planet or Mine? had a few other weaknesses. Jana's family was a little too quick to accept that Cavin was an alien which wasn't entirely believable. I realize that, at the very least, he needed Jana's grandfather's cooperation, but perhaps one of Jana's family members could have shown a little doubt. Instead, they, and then the government officials, all jumped on board with very few reservations. The political parts of the story were a bit slow-moving. In addition to Earth being in jeopardy, Jana has someone out to get her and her family by spreading false rumors of campaign fraud, but I couldn't help wondering if this part of the story couldn't have been pared down or eliminated altogether in favor of building Cavin's save the Earth mission a little more fully. Despite these perceived deficiencies, Your Planet or Mine? was a light, easy read and a pretty enjoyable story if the reader is inclined to just go with the flow. It has definitely peaked my interest enough to continue with the series.
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