Vashti has a checkered past that she holds against herself more than anybody else really does. When she’s forced to return to her hometown almost two decades after scandal, she’s well educated and has made something of herself. She’s inherited her aunt’s B & B which has fallen into disrepair, but Vashti has the training and knowledge to save it.
Sawyer and his teenage daughter have been touched by tragedy, but they admire Vashti and stand by her side when everything starts going sideways. They teach her that family isn’t always a blood relation, sometimes it’s just about love.
Here’s what bothered me:
The secrets and mystery seemed to reveal themselves very early on. In the middle of chapter eight I had a LOT figured out already. If you’re one of those people who can watch a detective show and say, “He did it!” in the first 20% of the story, you’ll see everything coming a mile away in this book. True story- I slammed the cover shut on my Kindle and said, “Oh my God. I know what’s going to happen.” That’s no fun. I want to be shocked.
Sequel Bait. There was enough backstory and explanation on characters, I started envisioning what would happen down the line to the rest of the townspeople.
Extra Words. I’m sorry. I see this a lot, so I know it’s a popular writing style but I can’t stand it. If you allow me to witness a scene between two characters, I don’t want a blow-by-blow every time they tell someone else what happened. I’d much rather you cut the extra stuff and give me a shorter book. Have you ever witnessed something, and so many people ask you to retell the story that you begin to bore yourself? That’s how I feel when every detail and spoken word is recounted to every other character.
Sexy Times. I liked the sex part of the sex scenes. However, I had a hard time believing people would think certain phrases when checking each other out. I know we’re all unique… but some of it left me confused, rolling my eyes, or ranting. I try to make sure I never put spoilers in my reviews, so I’ll word this carefully- Sawyer does something after a bout of lovemaking (I think it’s their second time) that would frighten most women. When you see a man do this in movies and TV, the girl is always freaking out, telling all her friends, and looking over her shoulder because she’s scared she’s now being stalked (and she usually is). But hey, we’re all different so maybe some women would think it’s hot. To each their own.
The “love” started happening too fast. Vashti and Sawyer have been through some crap storms before meeting each other. Understandably, they aren’t ready to have a deep relationship in their life. They just want to explore the sexual chemistry between them. But when they decide it’s best to take a break from seeing each other, both of them start thinking that it’s not just sex, it’s feelings floating close to their heart that draws them to one another. Ummm, they’ve spent a few hours together a few times and had brain melting sex. I think the “feelings” are an excuse, in the moment, to get another great lay. I can’t say I blame them, but it’s lust not love at that point.
I’m rating this particular book 2 stars because I think it could’ve been saved with a short stint in rehab. There were some great elements and characters, but the falling in love should take longer if it’s going to bust the romance stigma.
Full disclosure: We received an ARC from NetGalley, free of charge.
Does this book contribute to or help crush the romance stigma?
A stint in rehab wouldn’t hurt.
Other reading suggestions
Try Kristan Higgins. She’s all kinds of awesome. My favorite women’s fiction read of hers is On Second Thought. You can check out our review here.