Rating: 4 Stars
Description: Clare Morgan is ready for a fresh start when she moves to the small Massachusetts town of Knights Bridge with her young son, Owen. Widowed for six years, Clare settles into her job as the town's new librarian. She appreciates the warm welcome she and Owen receive and truly enjoys getting the library ready for its role in the annual holiday open house. Clare expects to take it slow with her new life. Then she meets Logan Farrell, a Boston ER doctor in town to help his elderly grandmother settle into assisted living. Slow isn't a word Logan seems to understand. Accustomed to his fast-paced city life, he doesn't plan to stay in Knights Bridge for long. But Daisy Farrell has other ideas and enlists her grandson to decorate her house on the village green one last time. Logan looks to Clare for help. She can go through Daisy's book collection and help him decorate while she's at it. As Clare and Logan get his grandmother's house ready for the holidays, what neither of them expects to find is an attraction to each other. Better than most, they know all the crazy things that can happen in life, but everything about Knights Bridge and this magical season invites them to open themselves to new possibilities ...and new love. (from Goodreads)
Genre: Romance - Contemporary
Why I Picked This Book: So many reasons! For starters I just really enjoy this series. Then throw in a bookish character who not only is a librarian but gets to spend part of the story sorting through someone's collection of books? How could I pass that up?
My Impression: I always enjoy a visit to Knights Bridge, MA and I can never resist a book where one of the characters is a librarian. I was prepared to like Clare but I was a little taken aback by Logan's first appearance in the book. He doesn't come off as a nice guy. In fact he comes off as rude and kind of a jerk. I wasn't sure how he was going to be redeemed into a character that I could root for Clare to have a HEA ending with but he was! It's not that Logan's a jerk it's more of an intense efficiency and a lack of people skills bred from years working in the ER. I liked that we could see inside his head a bit which helped me understand him. Plus, how can you not like a guy who is devoted to his grandmother and truly misses his grandfather? And is incredibly sweet to a 6 year old boy without being condescending? Turns out I cannot because I was a member of the Logan fan club within 5 pages of his not so promising beginning. Logan Farrell may be my favorite jerk turned not so much in a contemporary (if you were wondering - Sebastian from Kleypas' Devil in Winter is my favorite in a historical).
The story is lovely and wonderfully Christmas-y. I loved watching Logan and Clare get to know each other as they decorated Daisy's house and I also enjoyed watching Owen make friends and really enjoy the season. There weren't any huge misunderstandings or big drama but it wasn't all unicorns and rainbows either. They read like regular people and there problems felt like regular problems that people actually have.
While I enjoyed the tie in to Dickens' Christmas Carol I thought the connection to Logan's dreams could've been fleshed out a little bit. There were a few mentions of Marley visiting Logan at night but we didn't really see it. However, that was really the only flaw I found. I've read all but one of the Carla Neggers' Swift River Valley books and this was my favorite one. Of all of the books this is one that would be the easiest to jump into as both characters are new to town but I do think this is a series best read in order so that you can really get a feel of what life in Knights Bridge is really like (and it'll help you keep track of all those Sloans!)
As usual for this time of year I'm knee deep in Christmas romances. Of all the ones I've read so far this year this is my favorite. It's sweet and funny and perfectly Christmas-y!
Would I Read More of this Series/Author?: Oh definitely! I can't wait for the next one in this series!
Would I Recommend this Book?: Yes, but this is a series best read in order.