M.L. Hickerson from the September 5, 2011 issue
Tagline: When Julia met Matt, everything fell into place--it just took them both a little while to recognize it.
In A Nutshell: Julia is marking items off her "Twenties List," things she wants to accomplish before she turns thirty. Matt encourages and calms her before she bungee jumps and even promises to help her learn to tango and drive a stick shift. She, in return, teaches him how to make ravioli by hand.
Observations: I thought this idea was fresh and I kick myself that I didn't think of it. I mean, I saw "The Bucket List" movie! Doh! Although I did wonder why someone would want to bungee jump if they were that terrified of it...
What I found more problematic was the fact that because Matt had chaperoned high school dances, of course, he could tango. I'm not sure where in the United States high schoolers tango or even play tango music at their dances, but I found that implausible. However, I managed to forgive that and still enjoy the story.
I liked how Hickerson dropped that mysterious hint about the last goal on Julia's list. When I read "...she realized she'd already mentally crossed off the last goal on her list," I thought, "Hmm, I wonder what it is..." The story moved along right after that to her 30th birthday party, so I didn't "have time" to ponder it. As a result, the ending was great because I hadn't already figured out her last goal was to fall in love.
On a side note, I found it interesting that you don't learn the hero's name until a third of the way through the story. And I didn't quite understand the title of the story. Maybe one of you can explain it's significance to me. :)