Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Someone to Love - Contemporary Romance Review

Someone to Love (Darling, VT #2) by Donna Alward

Rating: Good
Source:  Publisher


Ethan Gallagher is a firefighter in Darling, Vermont, who followed tradition and pledged his love on the Kissing Bridge to ensure lifelong happiness. A few years later, he s a widower with two rambunctious boys who no longer believes in magic. But even he has to admit that free-spirited Willow Dunaway fills him with wonder and an attraction he cannot deny.

Willow s come back to Darling a different girl than the one who left after high school. Overcoming her past and owning her own business has made her into a strong, independent woman. Single dad Ethan appeals to her in a way she didn t expect, even though settling down is the last thing on her mind. But after fire destroys the local food bank, the town rallies, and a fling between Ethan and Willow leads to unintended consequences. Can they find a way out of their heartbreak to make a home in each other s hearts?

Genre: Romance - Contemporary

Why I Picked This Book: I've been a fan of Alward's for awhile and I loved the first book in this series.

My Impression:   I have slightly mixed feelings about this one.   I absolutely loved Willow and Ethan and their interactions were a lot of fun to read.  They have very different outlooks on life and -especially at the beginning- misinterpret what they see of each other but they're both honest and direct with each other which kept it from being frustrating.  I really appreciated that Ethan's marriage had been a happy one and that he isn't afraid of love but of loss and having his children hurt.  I loved checking in with the Gallagher family and with Darling, Vermont.  In the previous book it was clear that Willow had quite a back story.  It was nice to get to know her better and to learn her story.

My mixed feelings come from the last third of the book or so.  While I understand Willow's reaction to the conflict given her history I struggled with the fact that she avoided Ethan for several weeks given the fact that she had formed an attachment with his children and them with her.  I understood his anger as his fear of letting someone in to their lives and then them disappearing had been realized.  As well I wasn't entirely comfortable with her deceptive phrasing to Ethan regarding the conflict.  I understood her motivation but the lack of honesty seemed out of character.  Willow's back story could be considered controversial but it was handled so sensitively and honestly that I don't think anyone would have a problem with it.

Despite my minor hesitation with this book I really did enjoy the read.  I found the characters unique and interesting and just plain likable.  I loved seeing more of the town and I absolutely can't wait for the next book!

Would I Read More of this Series/Author?: Absolutely!  I have the next book in the series and I'm super excited to start it!

Would I Recommend this Book?: Definitely!  If you enjoy contemporary romance like Jill Shalvis, Susan Mallory, or Sarah Morgan you will really enjoy this series!


  1. I need to read more Alward. You know how much I loved The House on Blackberry Hill. But I've been nervous.

    I think I would be a little frustrated with Willow, too. I don't even know what the conflict is, but it sounds like she wasn't thinking much of the kids.

  2. I don't think that I have read Donna Alward. It is a shame that there were a few hiccups in this book but I am glad that you enjoyed it overall.

  3. I was disappointed in her deceptive word play, too. I thought as a character Willow tried very hard to be as open and honest with herself as possible, so to see her kind of go against her beliefs was hard, but I could understand why she did it. Although, as Ethan said, she took away his right to choose, too.

    I also really liked the subject of her tattoo. I have had three family members who chose the period and two of my closest friends who chose the semicolon. It is a subject close to my heart and I was impressed with how it was addressed in the book.

  4. I just recently bought the first one due to someone's review or a few that I saw. I dislike when the characters have to have some kind of conflict and its not quite in character for them. However if I like the first one no doubt I'll read this one too.

  5. I haven't read Alward but will make a point to. I like unique characters and I enjoy the authors you mentioned in the recommendation. Your thoughts on the character behavior in the last third are intriguing.