Oh, what fun this book was! 4.5 stars.
Grace Burrowes’ books are what I turn to when I’m feeling a little ragged. To me, they’re the equivalent of a nice, civilized cup of tea; particularly after I’ve been drinking too much coffee (or whiskey). Her writing is woven together as precisely as a lace-knit shawl, and the basic decency of her characters is generally a balm to my nerves.
This book covered all those bases for me, but it also managed to be a little sharper, a little livelier than some of her recent books (I’m looking at you, True Gentlemen). In this story, we got Burrowes’ usual likeable, intelligent main characters who used their words, had nice adult reactions to their physical attraction, and dealt with their interpersonal issues in mostly un-frustrating ways. But we also got a compelling side plot complete with fairly three-dimensional antagonists, not-too-cute kids, and a little bit of action.
The only thing keeping it from being a true five-star read is that Colin and Anwen fell for each other SO quickly, SO easily… it was just so convenient. On the other hand, the lack of angst between them is part of what I enjoyed!
Overall, I found this to be one of Grace Burrowes’ most balanced and enjoyable reads, and look forward to revisiting it in a year when I need that soothing, settling, slightly adventurous just-right tone.