Book Review: The Hotel Nantucket

Author: Elin Hilderbrand

Genre: Women’s Fiction

Release Date: June 14, 2022

Thank you to the publisher and NetGalley for the Advance Review Copy.

When her life-long boyfriend screws up their relationship, Lizbet takes on the challenge of running an old abandoned hotel that has been recently renovated by a billionaire. This is no ordinary hotel though; as legend has it, it’s haunted!

The hotel owner, Xavier, tasks Lizbet with fully staffing the hotel, training, and everything else that comes with hotel management.

As we get to know the many different staff, we learn about their drama as they struggle not only personally but also with trying to get along with their teammates.

Overall, I liked it. This is a book with many storylines and many characters, but not much plot focus. It’s very much a character-driven story, but with so many of them, I’d almost venture to call it character soup. Some of the staff I really liked, others not so much. I found myself questioning why some stories were there as they added unnecessary bulk. As a result of so much bouncing back and forth, it took me a good chunk of the book to care about anyone, other than Grace, the 100-year-old relentless ghost who is determined to have the world discover how she died. She, I connected with the most and immediately. I kept wanting to learn more about the others from her eyes. She made the overall plot interesting. I had hoped the story contained a bit more ghostly encounters than it did. But that’s okay. My bad for expecting that. As I read, I wondered who the main character really was. I thought it was Lizbet, the GM, then Grace, the ghost, but I figured out, in the end, I was wrong. The real star and main character here is the hotel! While a location, the hotel is a character in itself, brought to life before the pages with its homelike decor, secrets, and extravagance!

I have loved the author’s other books. I was excited to read this one.  While this one was good, my favourites are still: 28 Summers, Summer of 69, and, Blue Bistro. Those were amazing!

But this is still an interesting read if you don’t mind a book that jumps from story to story and character to character. Just give it time, and by the end, you’ll be rooting for most of them!  The ending was a nice surprise. Although left me with some unanswered questions; for the sake of keeping this review spoiler-free, I won’t list them. The added bonus of the ‘Blue Book’ at the novel’s end was a nice addition. I’ve never been to Nantucket (I’m well familiar with Martha’s Vineyard though) but if I ever plan a trip to Nantucket, I’ll definitely reference the ‘Blue Book’.

The Homewreckers

🌟Book Review🌟
Thank you to @netgalley and the publisher @stmartinspress for the advance review copy.

Release Date: May 2022
GENRE: Women’s Fiction

SUMMARY: Hattie, a widowed and still grieving young woman works for her father-in-law’s business restoring houses. After a poor decision leaves her financially unstable, she reluctantly agrees to do a home renovation reality show. Hattie goes on a hunt searching for the perfect home to renovate on the show and what she ends up with is way more than an old, dilapidated house when the wallet of a woman who went missing 18 years prior turns up hidden inside.

MY THOUGHTS: I really liked it.
The story is told from multiple perspectives, allowing readers to learn more about some of the side characters. I found there to be two major storylines: The home renovation reality show and the missing person mystery from years ago. But, I never felt like the two storylines were disconnected in any way. The progression and revelations of each were nicely intertwined throughout.
The story had some romance but isn’t romance-centred. I found myself wondering early on who Hattie would fall for and after her feelings developed, I wished she’d move on as I guessed quite early what the outcome of the relationship would be. I also had an early sneaking suspicion about who the guilty party would be, and I was right.
The characters were all well developed, especially Cass; I loved Cass’ character, Hattie’s best friend. She was a great addition to bring Hattie comfort and support during high-tension times. Together, Hattie and Cass made a great team.
I found the pacing sometimes a little slow with too much detail around the house renovation, but other than that, this was a really good, easy, and memorable read.

Four Stars.

Cover Reveal: Twenty-Eight Years

Title: Twenty-Eight Years

Author: Telma Rocha

Publication Date: Summer 2022

Genre: Contemporary Fiction/Women’s Fiction

A past love and a new romance have more in common than Jenna bargained for!

Book Summary: Jenna Taylor has it all, or so she thinks: a secure job as a journalist at a prestigious magazine in downtown Toronto, a steady relationship, and a bestie everyone wants. When her fiancé, Josh Harrison, gives her the ultimatum to start a family now or they’re over forever, she’s shocked and hurt. His sudden announcement forces Jenna to accept a much-anticipated promotion in Quebec City—one she would have turned down for him. The promotion comes at the most convenient time and the distance is just the perfect amount of space to start over and nurse her broken heart.

But, when Jenna meets Liam Garnier in Quebec City, the shocking resemblances between the two men unnerves her. Could it be possible that they just look alike—not likely! Jenna takes it upon herself to discover the truth. The reality of the situation comes with a lot of consequences: hurt the people she loves the most or remain quiet and keep the truth from Twenty-Eight years ago buried. Can Jenna live with what she knows and not tell the ones she loves, and can she do so without it tearing her apart?

Pre-order available soon!

Add to Goodreads now!

Book Review of: Built to Last

Title: Built to Last

Author: Erin Hahn

Genre: Adult Romance

Publication Date: October 2022

🌟Book Review🌟
Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher, St martins press, for the advance review copy.

⭐⭐⭐⭐ / 5

Summary: Cameron and Shelby first fell in love on set in front of millions of viewers. They were costars on a TV show from an early age until their late teens. Circumstances force them apart and years later, they are once again brought together by another TV opportunity, this time, a reality home renovation show. Can they get over all the public mistakes they made as kids all those years ago and finally admit their love for each other?

My Thoughts: I really liked this one.

The characters were likeable, the story was engaging, and the supporting characters were phenomenal—even the antagonist. Shelby and Cameron’s love shined through, and I rooted for them all the way. The only thing keeping me from giving it 5 stars was the slightly missing wow factor with the final climax. I had expected a bit more punch with a lot more anxiety-filled moments, but it was simply a sweet, well-written wrapup. It was actually fitting of the characters the more I consider it.

There are a lot of sexually mature scenes. So this is definitely not appropriate for younger audiences despite the cutesy cover.

Four Stars

Book Review: Haven

Author: Emma Donoghue

Thank you to @netgalley and the publisher for the advanced review copy.

Release Date: August 2022
GENRE: Historical Fiction

2.5 Stars

3 religious men set out on a small boat in search of an island after their leader has a dream.

This book caught my attention because of the premise and author but I’m so sad to say it wasn’t for me. The writing is undeniably beautiful, but I just couldn’t fall in love with the characters, and with the lack of adventure, it fell short.  The characters lacked conviction and the plot lacked excitement. I just found it boring and couldn’t get excited about the story. Because the writing is superb, and I’ve loved the author’s other books, I rounded it up to three stars. You might like it more or even love it if you don’t mind a slow plot.

Book Review: As Seen on TV

Title: As Seen On TV

Author: Meredith Schorr

Three Stars

Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for the advanced review copy of this book.

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Release Date: June 2022

Adi Gellar, a journalist from New York has had it with trying to find love in the city, so she heads out to a small town hoping to research and write a master of a piece about the residents and their objection to a new development project, and maybe fall in love. But what she finds is that the small town is unlike the other Hallmark small towns she’s used to from her romanticized movie obsession. But what the town has is the dreamy and delicious Finn who works for the developer.

There’s instant chemistry between the two, but when family obligations get in the way, Adi must decide what she really wants and what she’s willing to forgive, all while struggling to find a new angle to her story.

Overall, I didn’t love it as I hoped I would, but I liked it. The ending for me saved this book. I finally found that deep connection that I was looking for throughout.  What I struggled with the most was that the book just didn’t capture my attention for the first half. I found the characters a tad boring to follow in the beginning and it really wasn’t until the second half that it picked up, and I became more invested. Once that happened, I fell into an enjoyable rhythm, rooting and cheering them on.

An easy read with characters you’ll grow to enjoy.

Review Of: Fake it Till You Bake it

By: Jamie Wesley

Publication Date: June 2022

Four Stars!

Thank you to Netgalley and the publisher for the Advance Review Copy.

Jada, a rich, spoiled 25 year old is forced to work at a cupcake shop to prove she’s responsible before her grandmother releases her trust fund to her.

Donovan, the owner of the cupcake shop is a professional athlete and plays for the team that is owned by Jada’s grandmother.

The only problem is they’ve already met when she insulted him and his cupcakes! A spontaneous move on Jada’s part one afternoon has them fake dating in order to save Jada from a recent scandal and to try to increase cupcake sales. While ‘pretending’ to enjoy each other’s company, true feelings surface but they try hard to ignore them.

I loved this book. It was cute, fun, and while predictable, a gripping romance story full of tension. I even bought all the ingredients to make cupcakes as I read! I disliked Jada in the first couple of chapters. Her bullying and arrogance worried me, but once she showed us her vulnerabilities, she was a much more likeable character. Overall, she had a fantastic character Arc.  I loved her Grandmother’s and Donovan’s support. GREAT characters!

The only issue that prevented me from giving it 5 stars was the many sudden, unexpected POV shifts within the same paragraph! It pulled me out of the story each time and had me thinking about who’s head I was in at that moment. There were a few dialogue scenes that confused me as well. Mainly because it either didn’t fit or I wasn’t sure who was speaking. I hope these are addressed as part of final edits and cleaned up. Other than those two points, it was spot on and enjoyable.