Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Lilac Lane

You don't even need me to tell you I picked this book for the cover, do you?

No one writes about friends, family and home better than Sherryl Woods. Told with warmth and humor, Lilac Lane is a brand-new story in her beloved Chesapeake Shores series, one readers all over the world have waited two years to read!

At the heart of Lilac Lane is Keira Malone, who raised her three children alone after her first marriage broke apart, and who, after years of guarding her heart, finally finds love again. But that love is short-lived when her fiancĂ© suffers a fatal heart attack. Grieving and unsure of what’s next, Keira agrees to move from Dublin to Chesapeake Shores, Maryland, to spend time with her daughter, Moira, and her new granddaughter, Kate, as well as to help her son-in-law, Luke, with his Irish pub, O’Briens

Not wanting to live underfoot, she rents a charming cottage on Lilac Lane, replete with views of the ocean and her neighbor’s thriving garden—not to mention views of the neighbor himself. The neighbor is none other than Bryan Laramie, the brusque and moody chef at the pub, with whom Keira is constantly butting heads. But things get real when Bryan’s long-lost daughter, whom he hasn’t seen since she was a baby, shows up out of the blue. As Bryan and Keira each delve into their pasts, reopening wounds, the rest of the town is gearing up for the Fall Festival Irish Stew cook-off, and making no bones about whose side they’re on. It’s Kitchen Wars meets This is Your Life—a recipe for disaster…or a new take on love?

I think it plays in my favorite that I haven't read the rest of the series because it's my understanding that Keira is featured throughout and people maybe haven't loved her character. I can easily understand why you wouldn't love her, she immediately comes off as an abrupt, sometimes cold and rude, person- everything you would say were characteristics of an awful mother in law. Every book and movie that has that character, this is what Keira is. The book begins with us learning that while she FINALLY finds love (although reluctantly), he dies right away and she's left again. So her daughter and grandfather (and his new wife) decide they are going to lure Keira to the United States (from Ireland) to help Moira with her new baby, maybe help out at the pub Moira's husband runs, and (hopefully) decide that life here is better among family.

Keira comes and from the start things aren't falling into place quite so easily.

Eventually she meets Bryan, who is just as crabby as she is, and it's the start of a (rather comical) war so to speak. Bryan is a chef at the pub Keira finds herself consulting for to make it truly authentically Irish, and they butt heads over how things should be done. He's kind of a mystery because he doesn't talk much, but Keira ends up being his neighbor, and they strike up an out-of-work friendship... it just doesn't carry over into the pub. I got the feeling that Keira wants to be happy and in love but she has a reputation to uphold and doesn't want to appear weak- she's lived her entire life on her own and managed to raise her children alone by being tough and no nonsense. Love is something she doesn't have time for and can't afford to let herself be broken by someone else again. Third time's the charm?

If you didn't know, you would think this has "Hallmark movie" written all over it and as it turns out, it's part of a Hallmark Channel Original series. So if you are a fan of Hallmark movies, the feel good family based stories, or maybe a romance that isn't all hot sex and bad boys- this is for you. Truly. I think readers who enjoy romance but not with all the kink are going to enjoy this. Obviously if you're a fan of this series, this is a great addition. All of the favorite characters make an appearance (which is nice because if you were a fan of Moira and Luke, you are going to really love this book because they appear quite a bit and you get to see how they, and their new daughter Kate, are. Overall I'm giving this book 3/5 stars because I think I like a little more kink? This is maybe too vanilla for me to randomly pick up, but I also know a lot my blog readers aren't into kink so much and this would be right up their alley!

Are you interested in a free trip? If you pre-order your copy of Lilac Lane, you can enter to win a trip to the town that inspired this book series! You can visit HERE for more information!