I have read, enjoyed and reviewed quite a few books by this author, so I was thrilled to be invited onto this Blog Tour by Mills and Boon. Susan Mallery writes uplifting stories that don’t shy away from more difficult subjects. You are guaranteed a happy ending, but you will have to work for it! If you’d like to look at my previous reviews, there are a couple of links here: The Friendship List and The Stepsisters.
I am grateful to Mills and Boon for my advance reading copy which was gifted to me in exchange for my honest review. You can read my thoughts below.
Could this be the place to find happy ever after?
When Bree, Mikki and Ashley open The Boardwalk Bookshop on the Californian coast it is a dream come true. But while their business is thriving, their personal lives are not.
Bree has sworn to protect her heart at all costs, until an unexpected meeting with a bestselling author changes everything. Mikki has never moved on from her divorce but knows something must change. And Ashley’s wedding fantasy is shattered when she discovers her boyfriend never wants to get married.
Every Friday the three friends meet on the beach in front of the bookshop to toast the sunset. Here, as their bond grows closer, they will challenge each other to not only face their fears but fight for what they have always wanted in life, and love.
I loved the premise of this book. Three very different women come together in business and friendship to create a special shopping experience whilst supporting each other through the trials of relationships.
The story covers all three women, but I found Bree’s story to be the most interesting. The impact of her parent’s indifference and her husband’s callousness had damaged her ability to trust both herself and others. Her self-destructive patterns were a huge part of her self-defences. An argument in terms, perhaps, but the only explanation for her attitude to love.
Mikki and Ashley both had incredibly interesting stories and I wasn’t bored when the action switched between characters. Mikki and her discovery of internet dating, and Ashley’s shattered dreams of happily ever after, added real depth to the plot. The backdrop of Dave and Harding’s non-profit was inspirational and added an extra element to an already uplifting story.
For me, the parts that I enjoyed the most related to Bree and Harding. Both of them had plenty of baggage, but it was Harding’s patience that I found disarming. His determination to break down Bree’s defences was a revelation.
I haven’t met a Susan Mallery book that I’ve not enjoyed, her observations of human interactions mean that her books are current and valid. I can certainly say that they keep getting better and this is my favourite to date.
Susan Mallery is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of books about the relationships that define women’s lives—romance, friendship, and family. With compassion and humour, Susan keenly observes how people think and feel, in stories that take readers on an emotional journey. Sometimes heartbreaking, often funny, and always uplifting, Susan’s books have spent more than 200 weeks on the USA Today bestsellers list, thanks to her ever-growing legions of fans.
Critics, too, have heaped praise on “the new queen of romantic fiction.” (Walmart) Booklist says, “Romance novels don’t get much better than Mallery’s expert blend of emotional nuance, humour, and superb storytelling,” and RT Book Reviews puts her “in a class by herself!”
Although Susan majored in accounting, she never worked as an accountant because she was published straight out of college with two books in the same month. Sixteen prolific years and seventy-four books later, she hit the New York Times bestsellers list for the first time with Accidentally Yours in 2008. She made many appearances in the Top 10 before (finally) hitting #1 in 2015 with Thrill Me, the twentieth book in her popular series, the Fool’s Gold romances, and the fourth of five books released that year.
Susan lives in Seattle with her husband, a ragdoll cat, and a small poodle with delusions of grandeur. Her heart for animals has led Susan to become an active supporter of the Seattle Humane Society. Animals play a big role in her books, as well, as she believes they’re an integral component to a happy life.
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