Blurb: In small town Laurel Ridge, not everything is as simple as it appears
After a terrible betrayal, Allison Standish flees Philadelphia for the small Amish village of Laurel Ridge to claim an unexpected inheritance. Allison intends to sell the mansion housing various shops on Main Street–until she meets Nick Whiting, a single father and tenant of Blackburn House, who challenges everything she believes about her estranged grandmother and the Amish community.
Strange stipulations in her grandmother’s will soon bring distant relatives and seething townsfolk to Allison’s door. As anonymous threats escalate, Nick grows protective of Allison, and she finds herself falling for the handsome carpenter… But then she discovers her grandmother’s death may not have been accidental, and someone wants Allison gone. Permanently.
Review: I really wasn’t jazzed by this book. While the basic story with regards to the mystery/suspense part of the book was pretty well done, it totally lacked the support of the romance aspect of it. That came across as something of an afterthought on the author’s part. You would be reading along and getting into the story and then it was as if the author remembered that this was also supposed to be a romance and threw those characters together for a brief moment before getting back to business.
I don’t need a book to have loads of steamy for me to classify it as a romance, but you absolutely need more personal interaction than a few tiny kisses here and there for me to believe the emotion behind a relationship. You definitely need more than a few hours together over a few weeks for me to believe that your characters are deeply, emotionally connected to each other no matter what else may be going on in the story. Heck, even if those personal interactions are just conversations and time spent doing anything together, it works way better than the effort that was put into this.
I used to really love the mystery genre, but I haven’t been all that interested lately. I picked this up because I wanted something different for a change. The potential for a good mystery romance seemed to be just want I was looking for. Since the romance totally fell flat for me, I hoped I’d get a lot more out of the mystery aspect of the story. While it was decent, it wasn’t awesome and definitely didn’t make up for the missing romance. Besides, there are only so many times when the bad guy spills his guts at the end to wrap everything up nicely in a bow before it becomes a cookie cutter ending to a mystery and leaves the reader half expecting to here “… darn meddling kids!”