Tuesday, April 22, 2014
After playing nomad for five years, Blake Hunziker has finally had enough of adventure. Not sure what reception he'll get from everyone back in Whisper Shore, he's stunned at not only a warm welcome from his hometown but also a job offer. The job is his if he can successfully pull off the annual Christmas Festival. If only he knew the first thing about coordinating events...
If there's one thing Autumn Kingsley knows, it's Whisper Shore. For years, she's been stuck running her family's inn when all she wants is to see the world. Now she has a visit scheduled from a potential investor who could take over the inn, as well as a dream job offer in Paris. But with just two weeks to whip the inn into shape, her chance at escape is a long shot.
The Hunzikers and the Kingsleys may not get along, but Blake knows Autumn's the only one who can help him. She agrees to a trade--she'll help with the Festival and he'll help with inn repairs. But what was meant to be a simple deal quickly becomes much more than that when the guy who's done running away joins forces with the girl who can't wait to leave.
Oh, where to start?! Saying I loved this book would be a gross understatement, adored is closer but still doesn't quite describe how amazing this book was! Made to Last was one of my favorite reads of 2013 and I loved Blake's character in that book. So needless to say I had some insanely high expectations for Here to Stay and I am quite happy to announce that Melissa surpassed them all, leaving me giddy happy and totally in love with this new book!
Blake was so completely awesome! I loved his character's sense of humor and fun-loving nature in the first book and while those things were still there we were given a much deeper look into who Blake Hunziker really is, and it just made him even more amazing! I especially loved the scenes where he allowed himself to be vulnerable, I honestly melted and just wanted to wrap him in a big hug. Then there was his caring side, some of the things he did for people were just so stinkin' sweet but I won't spoil them for you! And the last thing I'm going to mention is how much I admired how he was no longer running from his past but was finally ready to stand up and face it.
Autumn was fantastic too! I appreciated how hard she worked to keep her family's inn running even though she was planning to leave and how much she cared for everyone there. Her personality reminded me of myself a bit, funny, cautious but willing to take risks with the right people, wanting to do what was best for everyone, book loving, and remembering random facts. I also loved how perfectly she and Blake fit together, definitely a match made in heaven.
And then there were all the minor characters who were great as well, the inn staff, Ellie and Jake, Mrs Satterly, Lucy, the Hunzikers, and the Kingsleys. I thought it was really cute how Melissa incorporated her nephew Ollie, who has Down Syndrome, by having a little boy named Oliver and another character who had DS. Knowing about Ollie made those parts of the book all the more sweet!
One random thing I want to mention that I absolutely loved was the fact that Blake gave Autumn the nickname of Red! If fit so well and I loved the connection to The Philadelphia story.
I could gone on gushing for quite a lot more but this review is already crazy long so I'll wrap up! I love Melissa's writing style, her humor, the way she throws in fun movie references, and it just seems like every word is perfectly placed to create this wonderful story. In short this book was absolutely superb and I think it was even better than Made to Last! Also it is one of those rare books that I wanted to reread as soon as I'd finished it!
Meet the Author
Melissa Tagg, author of Made to Last and Here to Stay, is a former reporter and total Iowa girl. In addition to her homeless ministry day job, she's also the marketing/events coordinator for My Book Therapy, a craft and coaching community for writers. When she's not writing, she can be found hanging out with the coolest family ever (not that she's biased), watching old movies, and daydreaming about her next story. She's passionate about humor, grace, and happy endings. Melissa blogs regularly and loves connecting with readers at www.melissatagg.com
I received this book free from the publisher in exchange for my review. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.