Author: JoAnn Ross

Review: Herons Landing by JoAnn Ross

Posted October 2, 2018 by Holly in Reviews | 1 Comment

Review: Herons Landing by JoAnn RossReviewer: Holly
Herons Landing (Honeymoon Harbor, #1) by JoAnn Ross
Series: Honeymoon Harbor #1
Publisher: HQN
Publication Date: May 22, 2018
Point-of-View: Third
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Pages: 496
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | The Ripped Bodice | Google Play Books
Goodreads
three-half-stars

There’s no place to fall in love like the place you left your heart

Welcome to Honeymoon Harbor, the brand-new, long-awaited series by beloved New York Times bestselling author JoAnn Ross, where unforgettable characters come face-to-face with the kind of love that grabs your heart and never lets go.

Working as a Las Vegas concierge, Brianna Mannion is an expert at making other people’s wishes come true. It’s satisfying work, but a visit home to scenic Honeymoon Harbor turns into a permanent stay when she’s reminded of everything she’s missing: the idyllic small-town charm; the old Victorian house she’d always coveted; and Seth Harper, her best friend’s widower and the neighborhood boy she once crushed on—hard. After years spent serving others, maybe Brianna’s finally ready to chase dreams of her own.

Since losing his wife, Seth has kept busy running the Harper family’s renovation business and flying way under the social radar. But when Brianna hires him to convert her aging dream home into a romantic B and B, working together presents a heart-stopping temptation Seth never saw coming. With guilt and grief his only companions for so long, he’ll have to step out of the past long enough to recognize the beautiful life Brianna and he could build together.

Herons Landing by JoAnn Ross is the first book in her Honeymoon Harbor series. I took a break from small-town contemps for a while, but Ross is a favorite and this new series appealed to me. I ended up really enjoying it, though the beginning was somewhat problematic for me.

Brianna grew up in Honeymoon Harbor in the Pacific Northwest. For years she’s been working her way up the ladder at high-end hotels as a concierge. Her current assignment in Las Vegas is a challenge, but when Herons Landing, an old Victorian in her hometown she’s always coveted, comes on the market, she realizes she hasn’t been happy in her work in a long time. An incident at work the same day pushes her to make some changes in her life so she can finally realize her dream of owning her own B&B. The only contractor she wants to work with just happens to be her former crush – and her best friend’s widower.

Seth married Zoe right out of high school. They’d been together since they were 13 years old. She was his best friend and his soul mate. Losing her really devastated him. While he’s able to function, go to work, even spend time with friends.. he’s drowning inside. When Bri comes back to town, he’s not in a good place to spend time with her. But the more they’re forced to work together, the more he heals. It isn’t long before he realizes Bri is just what he needs…but he’s determined to protect his heart from ever suffering that way again.

I really loved the town and citizens of Honeymoon Harbor. Bri’s family, their friends and the entire town really came to life. There were several times I cracked up at their antics, or got a little nostalgic for my own hometown. I also really loved Bri herself. She was feisty, level-headed and not afraid to go after what she wanted. She really made the whole book for me. From the beginning I just wanted to see where Bri was headed.

My heart hurt for Seth. Despite his wife being gone for over two years, he still hasn’t been able to process his grief and begin healing. His anger and guilt over surviving came across very well, and really touched me. Conversely, it also frustrated me in the beginning. The first 6 or so chapters were dedicated a lot to Zoe, which made me question how well the romance would work. Thankfully, 1) Bri and Seth talked about things like adults, and 2) once they started getting physical things turned in his mind and he wasn’t always thinking about Zoe or feeling guilty over it.

Overall this was a quick, fun read. I really enjoyed the town of Honeymoon Harbor and the romance.

3.5 out of 5

Honeymoon Harbor

three-half-stars


Tagged: , , , , , ,

Lightning Review: On Lavender Lane by JoAnn Ross

Posted June 25, 2013 by Holly in Reviews | 0 Comments

Lightning Review: On Lavender Lane by JoAnn RossReviewer: Holly
On Lavender Lane (Shelter Bay, #3) by JoAnn Ross
Series: Shelter Bay #3
Publisher: Berkley
Publication Date: January 3, 2012
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Pages: 378
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | The Ripped Bodice | Google Play Books
Goodreads
four-stars

Sometimes the second time is the charm....

After seeing enough of war, former Navy SEAL Lucas Chafee is settling back into civilian life when he accepts a job refurbishing a farmhouse for an old friend, who plans to turn it into a culinary school.

Celebrity TV chef Madeline Durand was badly shaken when her husband's illicit video went viral, so she jumps at the chance to reevaluate her life in Shelter Bay while helping her grandmother turn the family farm into a new business. Little does she know that the man who broke her heart years ago is already on the job.

Having let Maddy leave Shelter Bay once, Lucas isn't about to let her get away this time. But rekindling their romance won't be easy, as she still hasn't forgiven him for a fateful night ten years ago. But Lucas is a man on a mission, and with the help of some Shelter Bay matchmakers, he plans to come up with a very special recipe of passion, patience, and perseverance to win her over....

On Lavender Lane (Shelter Bay, Book 3) by JoAnn Ross

After seeing enough of war, former Navy SEAL Lucas Chafee is settling back into civilian life when he accepts a job refurbishing a farmhouse for an old friend, who plans to turn it into a culinary school.

Celebrity TV chef Madeline Durand was badly shaken when her husband’s illicit video went viral, so she jumps at the chance to reevaluate her life in Shelter Bay while helping her grandmother turn the family farm into a new business. Little does she know that the man who broke her heart years ago is already on the job.

Having let Maddy leave Shelter Bay once, Lucas isn’t about to let her get away this time. But rekindling their romance won’t be easy, as she still hasn’t forgiven him for a fateful night ten years ago. But Lucas is a man on a mission, and with the help of some Shelter Bay matchmakers, he plans to come up with a very special recipe of passion, patience, and perseverance to win her over….

This was a sweet reunited lovers story (one of my favorite romance tropes). I especially liked that it was Lucas who wanted a permanent relationship. I don’t think that happens often enough in novels. It seems like the men are always commitment shy, but that isn’t realistic. This was refreshing in that respect.

I do think the romance came about rather quickly. Hardly any time at all passed between Maddy seeing a video of her fiance cheating and rekindling her high school romance with Lucas. I really wish more time had passed before she jumped into something else.

As a food lover, that aspect of the novel was really great. The way the food was described, along with the production aspects of the show, really drew me in. I also loved Maddy’s grandmother.

This was a sweet story. A must-read for food lovers and fans of contemporary romance.

3.75 out of 5

The Series

Book Cover Book Cover Book Cover Book Cover Book Cover Book Cover

This book is available from Signet. You can buy it here or here in e-format.

four-stars


Tagged: , , , , , , ,