Title: Wild Iris Ridge
Author: RaeAnne Thayne
Release Date: July 2014
Length: 352 pages
Series?: Hope’s Crossing #7
Source: CBB Book Promotions
Welcome to my tour stop for Wild Iris Ridge by RaeAnne Thayne. This is an adult contemporary romance published by Harlequin.
The tour runs July 21-31 with reviews, author interviews and guest posts.To see all of the goings on for the Wild Iris Ridge tour, visit the tour schedule.
This book can be read as a stand-alone. Other titles from Hope’s Crossing are companion novels and each one is focused on a different couple from the town.
A big-city, high-powered advertising executive and a small-town firefighter learn that no matter where you started or what you’ve lost, if you open your heart, you can find joy and love again. WILD IRIS RIDGE is the latest book in USA TODAY bestselling author RaeAnne Thayne’s charming Hope’s Crossing series.
Lucy Drake and Brendan Caine have only one thing in common. And it’s likely to tear them apart. Because it was Brendan’s late wife, Jessie—and Lucy’s best friend—who’d brought them together in the first place. And since Jesse’s passing, Brendan’s been distracted by his two little ones…and the memory of an explosive kiss with Lucy years before his marriage. Still, he’ll steer clear of her. She’s always been trouble with a capital T.
Lucy couldn’t wait to shed her small-town roots for the big city. But now that she’s back in Hope’s Crossing to take care of the Queen Anne home her late aunt has left her, she figures seeing Brendan Caine again is no big deal. After all, she’d managed to resist the handsome fire chief once before, but clearly the embers of their attraction are still smoldering…
Lucy returns to the only place she can really call home, Hope’s Crossing, where her father unceremoniously dumped her so many years ago with a kind and compassionate great-aunt. In Hope’s Crossing she also bonded with her cousin, Jess, and together they create an unshakable friendship.
Now, years later, Lucy has left the big city in somewhat of a disgrace, seeking shelter and refuge while trying to figure out her next move…and complete a wish of her aunt and cousin, even though she has no intention of staying in Hope’s Crossing.
Lucy plans to renovate her aunt’s house, Iris House, and turn it into a bed and breakfast, but Hope’s Crossing is not all a bed of roses for Lucy. Years ago, on a starlit night, Brendan Caine kissed Lucy. And she thought he hung the moon…until he started dating her cousin Jess two weeks later! Now, with Jess gone and two little ones left behind, godmother Lucy is trying very hard to be civil to Brendan, but abandonment is a hard spoonful of medicine to swallow.
But history will repeat itself when her father comes knocking once again.
This is not a typical romance novel, for a couple of reasons, and I liked that. First, Lucy sparked something with Brendan all those years ago…and then he married her best friend. I appreciated that Lucy was a flawed character and that she admitted trying to undermine Brendan in Jess’s eyes – all the way up to their wedding. Lucy’s animosity toward Brendan has been no secret, but with Jess as the buffer gone and no reason to keep it quiet any longer, it brings about the opportunity for the two of them to work through that, which is a process all the way through the book since day one when Lucy reappears in Hope’s Crossing.
The second thing that struck me was that Brendan Caine was the one ready to settle down, which is the root of all their issues sparking from that one night of passionate kisses…and hope. Another thing that stood out was that Lucy had her own dad busting down her door and had to deal with his parenting and parental issues.
Hope’s Crossing is also embellished with wonderful townspeople, and the Caine family and the mayor’s daughter (who is Lucy’s interior decorator AND a future Caine herself) add rich depth, familial life, loyalty and love to the book. The Caine family, the townspeople, and some of the conversations Lucy had with various townsfolk was what created the truly authentic feel of this novel. I fell in love with the Caine family. Dermet Cain, the father of the unruly bunch, is a man that I would love to meet in real life.
The small town, down home feel of this novel, interspersed with the characters that appear in the first six books, makes me want to grab up those first six books! The Caine family is one I have no problem getting to know better, and they are a welcome and refreshing set of characters themselves.
*****About the Author*****
USA TODAY bestselling author RaeAnne Thayne loves words. This led her to a fifteen-year career in journalismas a newspaper reporter and editor. But through it all, she dreamed of writing the kind of stories she loved best, romance, and has since published more than 40 titles. RaeAnne finds inspiration in the rugged northern Utah mountains, where she lives with her hero of a husband and their children. She loves to hear from readers and can be reached through her website.
TWO WINNERS GET: 1 book from the Hope’s Crossing series, 1 beaded HOPE bracelet, 1 Iris necklace (US/CA).